Recently at a party, a photographer and I eagerly compared how, in our work, we blur the lines between commercial and artistic. I found it intriguing when she shared shooting headshots for actors and models present different challenges. Actors, she said, are more malleable, whereas models often have limited flexibility from their ‘look.’ With a subtle wink, she added she also shoots book cover shots for authors.
I segued into the genres I work within – memoir, fiction, inspirational, academic and so forth – and I easily move from one to the next as they all contain story elements.
She asked, “So, who is your favorite type of client?”
Quickly and confidently I stated, “I like working with a client who is enthusiastic.” I added it’s great to work with one who is open creatively, considers options and ideas, and enlivens both the personal and collective process. In an organic way, this client allows the writing to make decisions about its path as it’s written.
Of course, I have coached to expand all of those qualities. Truly everyone, including me, has room to grow. Enthusiasm is an excellent fuel to get things fired up.
Mingling, I began chatting with a guest who asked, “What do you do?” When I shared about my profession, he lit up. “I’ve got a great idea for a book” and then “I know it would be a blockbuster!”
“Great,” I responded with a smile. “Have you began writing?”
“Oh, I’m not a writer,” he said, shrugging it off.
“Well, you can’t be one until you write. Gotta start somewhere, and I can help,” I said taking a healthy bite of cake.
“So if I start, how long will it take me to finish my book?” he spouted before I could swallow, then “Will it be a bestseller?”
Oh, those end-result questions that leap from A to Z, from initial idea to the palatial estate bought with gobs of dough made from book sales.
“If we work together, we can determine a doable timeline, but otherwise,” I said with a grin, “those are good questions for a crystal ball.”
We laughed, and I added what I do know from twelve years of coaching is that published writers have a foundation of commitment and a robust perseverance. Passion is a starting point, and there are no boundaries set around its growth. I offered him my card.
Everyone has at least one story, and many have a book inside them. Still, the published author acts upon their desire and has the flexibility to roll with their creativity. The successful one never pretends by modeling the pose of a writer. As easy as cocktail conversation, this creative person simply feels a calling, an innate enthusiasm, then says ‘hello’ to the page and begins writing.