Many artists, entrepreneurs, and dreamers hear that there’s no market for their dream. It’s dire, folks, but here’s some hope for ya.
Psst! I heard that some odd sort of people prefer watching videos over reading articles. Super weird. But weird people are my type of people, so I made a video preview of this blogpost. Now you can go watch the great quirky awkwardness of me instead of reading my awkwardness in blogpost form.
So I was walking through Barnes and Noble and stumbled across these books:
They were on the shelves in the front, the money-maker shelves. You know what I’m talking about, the shelves that mean publishers have bought into this book, that have said “Yes, these will make money, put them prominently on display for all to see!” Those kind of books.
But these aren’t your typical money-maker books.
Exhibit A: poetry.
Let’s be real, I totally judge books by covers, and I bought “The princess saves herself in this one” without even opening it. But when I did open it, I found poetry. A story in poetry form.
Poets are notorious examples of being told “there’s no market for your work.” When’s the last time you read poetry from a book? Probably high school. Poets are told they’ll only get interest on cutesy Instagram or Facebook images, and they’ll never get a publishing deal, and if they self-publish, they’ll never have any readers. Yet Amanda Lovelace, I don’t think she listened to that. At least not entirely. Because she wrote poetry and convinced probably an agent and a publisher that her work was worth front shelf placement at Barnes and Noble.
Exhibit B: Cartoon drawings with bad spelling, for adults not kids.
Like seriously, how do you pitch THAT to an agent or publisher? Got me! I’m still trying to figure out how to describe it on a blogpost.
It’s a book of cartoon drawings. An alien comes to earth to study humans, but the alien is bad at spelling and grammar so the book is full of cutesy misspellings, and the alien is actually befriending non-humans like rocks and animals and trees, but it’s insightful and philosophical into what actually makes us human. Oh yeah, it’s not a children’s book, it’s for grown-ups.
Okay, I have no idea how he pitched it, probably better than me, but I’m just saying if your dream sounds crazy, you’re in good Barnes-and-Noble-front-shelf company.
The business guy top secret insight:
After posting that Facebook video about these books, my business school brother messaged something insightful.
I had mentioned that poets often hear stuff like, “Nobody buys poetry anymore, they only read it on cutesy Facebook or Instagram posts.” I had said these authors didn’t listen to that negativity.
My brother noted my claim isn’t quite correct. They did listen to that. They noticed where the audience was and went to it. Amanda Lovelace started on Tumblr before ever being published, and I heard that Jomny Sun was on Twitter before being published. They both went to their market to get their big break. You can find your market and build interest now, too.
There’s a step in the right direction for ya. Past the dreaming and onto a practical tip. This is why my bro will make the big bucks 😉