When studios and networks and publishers and lovers reject us, we react by shying away from the edges of our personalities.
“I’m too edgy for broadcast.”
“I’m too quirky for mainstream distribution.”
“My books don’t fit their established molds.”
“I’m too messed up for someone to love me.”
Consciously or not, you censor yourself. You revise your personality to appeal to the customers.
This is the wrong move. No one respects someone who chases them, who conforms to their tastes — not a studio, not a network, not a publisher, not a lover. And they’re all lovers. No one desires someone who changes to suit them — because most people don’t know what they want. We know it when we see it. It’s not about a specific personality — it’s a quality — it’s the way you make us feel. It’s defiance. It’s standing out from the crowd. It’s the ability to deliver fresh, original, entertaining stories — whether in the room or out at dinner. It’s pride and confidence and authority. That’s who we all want to be in bed with.
The worst thing you can do is blend in with everyone else. It might work immediately — when they want someone — anyone — to fill a hole. But tomorrow, they’ll get the next interchangeable guy to fill that hole. And you’ll be there saying “but I fit in so well ….”
Be more you. Stake the territory at the edges of your personality, then show them why they need to set up shop there.