So everyone’s an artist. We are all writers, poets, singers, dancers, actors, painters, photographers, creators. But what makes your work stand out? That is the question. There seems to be a hive of people all swarming the same ideas, concepts, innovations. The public falls in love with a fad or a sub genre and goes mad until they grow bored and move on.
But don’t be too different either. I have learned through my own trial and error that you cannot push too far or people grow uncomfortable and you lose your following. Ah here comes that damn word again, balance. It makes me laugh because it is a simple enough goal, but constantly shifting. Just when you meet success and feel that you have finally reached some forward momentum you get forced back by someone else’s new take on things, or your very own.
I hit a wall lately because it seems that a lot of speculative fiction publishers disclaim that they are drowning in zombie, werewolf, and vampire tales and are not looking for such stories but then their next release is…wait for it…the latest zombie, werewolf, and/or vampire story. What they say they want is not necessarily on the mark nor is a warning to avoid certain genres.
Neil Gaiman is very good about stating that writers need to be true to themselves, him and like every other successful artist get that need for personal connection. The point is to find the publications that you trust and build a relationship with them. Do not fall into the trap that we all do in the beginning, trying to get as much of your work out there as possible.
Getting back to what I have previously stated in earlier posts, make your mark quality over quantity. Stand out by working on what you do best and maybe adjust a few things here and there to appease publishers, producers, directors as you need to. Improve over time and keep at it.