Now I know that there are people out there writing books, making films, taking photos, performing on stage or painting pictures who say, quite genuinely, that they do these things 'because they need to satisfy their inner muse' and, as a consequence, they place little store in the opinions of others. Some even say that they never, ever read a review of their efforts.
Well, folks, I'm not one of those people.
Whether I like it or not, I do value the opinion of others and, sad as it may sound, I do (ever just a little) crave praise for what I've written, if only to have the confirmation of my own self-belief in what I write; and let's face facts, it's that self-belief (misguided or otherwise) that we ourselves have the ability to produce something of worth that others may appreciate and gain enjoyment from that motivates most of us to do what we do and then, most crucially, place it out there in the public domain for others to scrutinise, dissect and comment upon. (If it really was just your inner muse you were aiming to satisfy, then you'd put what you'd created in a cupboard under the stairs, out of sight of others...wouldn't you?)
And it's a thrill, believe me, when you get that confirmation. It initially comes from family and supportive friends (though good friends are often critical as well), then occasionally there's a bolt from the blue, a name you don't recognise posting a positive comment or a high rating - and then there's an extra warmth to the glow you get when you read it.
Well, following the review of Red Plus Zone that was posted on the Stranger Views yesterday, I am positively radiant!
Click here to have a read the whole thing on the Stranger Views website.
And it couldn't have come at a better time, as final preparations are underway for the print version of Red Plus Zone to be made available...and with that in mind, I'll soon be asking a favour of you all, my fine followers out there in Blogland, to help me spread the word about Red Plus Zone, to tell your partners, your children (of a suitable age, naturally), parents, siblings, friends, work colleagues, even strangers on the street who you see reading a book or a Kindle (other e-readers are available...apparently).
Gird your loins, my friends - I'm calling in a favour!