Decided it was time to post a new blog entry and blow off some vented-up frustrations that I've been experiencing this year.
2020 started of great with so many projects to look forward to, including StokerCon UK, The Dublin Writers Festival and launching a new book... Obviously with the global pandemic kicking in, all author events came to grinding halt. And the sudden stop to all of these things was compounded for me with Matt Hayward dropping off the writing map...
All of this took my feet out from under me and has left me in a bit of limbo regarding writing and the pursuit of a career within it...
Is it worth it anymore?
Is the reward worth the effort that goes into it?
I couldn't answer those questions, so during this summer, I've sat back and watched the Bookstagram / Horror Fiction scene act out in front of me and have come to the final realisation of something I always knew deep down... It's all a load of shite.
There is far too much drama and self-promotion from writers that I feel ultimately makes the whole place nothing more than a toxic bubble of narcissism. The constant posting on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, has left me feeling unwell and to be honest, I'm at a point now where I just don't want to engage anymore – especially when I see people much older than myself post and do some of the things they have done.
I've since cancelled all scheduled appearances I had lined up for podcasts, magazine interviews and online events. While I understand the importance of these things to "advance" my career and "build awareness" for my work (especially since I've decided to run down the Indie road), I just don't believe the mental sacrifice of putting myself out there is worth it in exchange for a few "likes" and generic comments and book sales.
In my view, I believe some of today's up and coming writers need to social media less and write more – with a focus of bettering their work with every release. I've read some books this year and got the vibe it's author was distracted, lazy and even to a point where these "books" wouldn't pass a basic exam at primary school level, but these writers are getting all the "likes" and engagements on social media and it really makes me wonder. It's not good enough from those who set up their online presence as announce to the world that they are a writer...
And that is what I'm going to do in an attempt to reconnect and enjoy the craft again. Because if I can't reignite the spark and passion for writing fiction, then I will retire my pen and find something else to escape the harsh reality of life... maybe a return to martial arts or music? Unlikely as that would involve mixing with other people... so who the fuck knows... because at this point, all I know is, book promotion on social media is a load of crap and "brand building" is nothing more than a fancy corporate-like term for having an self-inflated ego that screams... "Look at me, I'm important."
In summary, I believe going media mute is the way forward for me and I will put that into practice from this point onwards. If you have an interest in my books, that's cool – my three social media accounts will remain open so I can keep readers posted on things like that. I realise that's contradictory to everything I've been giving out about, but it's a necessary evil – it's how certain people use it that bothers me. In addition, any real media work such as podcasts, interviews and events will be no more because I simply could not be bothered wasting time on these things taking bollocks about myself in attempt to sell you something and make myself look great.
Anyway, that's all from me for now.