I’ve always had a balance issue with presentations, readings and book launches. On one hand, it’s exciting, exhilarating, to have a book to present, read, launch. When I’ve worked for months and years to produce a story, the resulting book is a great reward. I think it’s fine to feel good about our work.
On the other hand, it’s not about me. My writing is a product of the call God has placed on my life. He has asked me to share His love and His word with others through my fiction. The joy I gain from this is rewarding, but again: it’s not about me.
I was reminded of this fact the other day when paging through photos or some of my earlier book events. I was pictured across the table from a woman who had attended a presentation, and we seemed to be deep in discussion. About writing? About books? About my book? None of the aforementioned. We were discussing…no, scratch that…I was listening to her tell me about her life. Nothing to do with my writing or any writing, but about the hardships she had faced.
It can be difficult to switch gears from being the “main event” to being a listener, but it’s a requirement of our calling. When I think back, I realize this woman needed someone to listen to her. God placed me there for that purpose. It wasn’t difficult, but it was humbling. She needed my ear, not my words.