Celebrity fame and productivity

I’ve got one of these. But if I were also a famous celebrity, this is what would happen. You’d hear about me a lot on the news and each time I would’ve got a new book out. Or my shocking scurrilous sordid squid sex secret has been revealed. (Delete depending on what celebrity news outlet you read.)

My personal life aside – we’re all adults here, I don’t judge you, you don’t judge me or at least don’t judge me until you’ve tried it – I think that there is something interesting and something that gets forgotten. These people you see relaxing on the BBC Breakfast couch talking about yet another book, yet another success, they have two things going on that they don’t really talk about and that they are not really asked about either.

First, they need that publicity. I don’t mean that they crave it within their souls or that their lifeforce depends upon adulation, I mean that without you hearing about their book, the book doesn’t sell. They want to eat, sure, but they probably also want to keep on writing books and they need us, they need some floodlights put on their faces.

But the second thing is ridiculous. We listen to journalists asking people about their new book and yet we don’t really, consciously think: “They’ve written a new book”. Obviously they have but we tend to think more that it’s “They’ve got a new book out”. That’s subtly different and I think it misleads us.

To get on the telly talking about a book, you have to write the book.

We see celebrities relaxing, talking happily at events and in interviews, but they solely got there because they did the work. It’s back-breaking work but they have broken their backs and done it.

And tomorrow they’re off doing it again.

I’m not fussed about fame and celebrity, I am very fussed about getting enough sales that I can keep writing books. Do the work. Be productive. And you will produce things.

I have no idea whether that will get you on the telly but I know that you don’t get on if you haven’t done the work.

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