The Benefits of Lying
By the time most of us are five years old, we learn a simple truth: lying has its benefits. No, I did not have my hand in the cookie jar. No, these are not crumbs on my face. Yes, I finished my chores. It helps to look mom straight in the eye. It also helps to cross your fingers behind your back.
Lying has its benefits in the adult world too. It helps smooth things over, make the situation look better than it really is, get you a sick day off work…exploring the art museum with your new hot date. Lying can help you get what you want or make you look like you’ve got it together. “Um, of coure I’ve already got plans for Valentines Day—but I’m free next Monday?
But in publishing, a lie is a loose canon. Fibs and fabrications might help you get cookies or hot dates, but when it comes to publicizing a book you might as well wear a ball and chain to swimming lessons. Lies only pull you down. Good publicists swear by honesty. And elbow grease. And joy.
A good publicist refuses to dress up a bad book to make it look good. If it’s not a good book, she simply won’t publicize it. She strives to celebrate only what is absolutely worth celebration. A good publicist builds lasting relationships—not only with clients, but with the media. She labors to build trust, and to build that trust on the truth, the beautiful truth of a good project. She seeks to support both her clients and her media network.
Like anyone who knows how to throw a good party, a good publicist makes spaces and connections that people want to be a part of. She is a synthesizer and a home-brew conversationalist. Good publicists do more than publicize. Publicists create community. They generate a buzz around books that are buzz-worthy, and they don’t need fake honey to do it. No lies. No hubris. Just honest-to-goodness service.
This entry was posted on Friday, February 11th, 2011 at 1:03 pm and is filed under Clients, Friends and Colleagues, Industry News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.