Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Sharing Good News

I struggle with posts where I share good news about myself, my family, or my accomplishments.

Where does sharing good news cross over into bragging?

With social media, including blogging, we face the challenge of how to present ourselves.  Do we show only our best work? Or do we share our less than stellar first attempts? We want to be sincere and genuine, but not foolishly transparent.  A balancing act.

In the New York Times article, The Etiquette of Celebrating or Bragging about Achievements, the author acknowledges, “we want to let people know about our successes, but we don’t want to appear to be doing so. And we want to hear about others’ victories, but not too often or too loudly.”

But here’s how I feel.  I think of my readers as friends.  You teach, encourage, and inspire me.  And I know you well enough to know that you are a kind and compassionate bunch.  You rejoice when I succeed and you cry with me when I am sad or discouraged. These shared experiences build friendships that last a lifetime.

I picked up a few guidelines for sharing good news from Dinty W. Moore, editor, Brevity.

  • Self –promotion is when you spam all of your friends and those who are barely friends and repeatedly say “buy my stuff,” or “look at my stuff.”
  • Self-promotion is NOT when you share good news with fellow strugglers. That’s just being part of a supportive community.
  • If you assume your friends would hate you for your success rather than be pleased for you, maybe it’s time to look for new friends. Or look at yourself. 

With thoughtful intention, I asked myself why I want to share this particular good news.  And the answers were simple.
  1. I’ve worked hard to master the crafts of photography and writing, and I am proud.  I want to show my work. 
  2. Uppercase magazine is an extraordinary magazine, and I want to do all I can to support publisher, editor, designer, Janine Vangool.  In fact, I wrote a short note of praise to Janine back in June.

Dear Janine,

This letter is long overdue, but comes from the heart.

I want to tell you how much I admire you. Not only do you produce one of the finest magazines I've ever had the opportunity to read, but you are a fine person. I love your emails where you share your struggles, your goals and aspirations . . . you think out loud . . . and this makes you feel like a friend. And most of all, as a mother of two sons, I respect the way you parent your son and nurture his sweet soul and budding creativity.

Subscribing to Uppercase is one of the most meaningful gifts I've ever given to myself. I tend to be hard on myself and sometimes feel as though I will never be enough, but lately, I've begun to embrace the concept that each of has worth and value apart from what we do, make, or create. And somehow, that concept has been very freeing. In Uppercase, I see the diversity of art and I am focusing on the joy that making brings me, rather than striving for some perfect product. Uppercase makes me feel uplifted and encouraged and as though my pictures count for something.


I am overjoyed to play any small part in the success of your magazine - and even more pleased to see you thrive, both personally and professionally.


Kindest regards, Donna


That’s about it for my motivation for sharing.  I’m really not that complicated.

So here goes . . . a little bragging on my part.

I’m in Uppercase, a magazine for the creative and curious, issue 26.


You can find my stamp from the Open Call on page 40 . . .  and my article, Lucky Find, on page 94.

 


Thanks for being the very best friends a gal could ask for.   Donna

28 comments:

  1. Congratulations! This isn't bragging at all. Sharing an achievement like this is inspiring and exciting. You've shared so tactfully and thoughtfully too. Believe me, I know what those braggy, braggy posts are like. I can finish them in my head before I read through them because they are all the same.

    This, on the other hand, was wonderful. Thank you for sharing.

    Now I need to check out that magazine!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Rebecca. I want to hear all about the new lens - and anything you can teach and share. Your website portfolio is gorgeous!

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  2. No you are not bragging. I have always appreciated your focus on others. Your work is beautiful and I am so thrilled. Gorgeous!

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    1. Sarah you have a heart of gold! Reading your recipes on your blog . . . you have a special talent in combining your science knowledge, your cooking skills, and your kind ways . . . to bring out the best in everyone. Can't wait to make those No Bake Energy Bites! Thank you for visiting here and for being such a faithful friend.

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  3. Many congratulations Donna! your work is amazing and you deserve to be published! I am off to check out that magazine ... thank you for sharing your heart!

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    1. Barb, When I look at your recent series of photographs featuring the berries and the vintage enamelware, I just swoon! THOSE pictures belong in a magazine! You are my go-to source for inspiration, my friend! Thanks for visiting here!

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  4. I know we have discussed this or I think we have, it is a balancing act and I think you have put it so well. As you always have a beautiful sense of who you are in my opinion. Love that you are featured in this magazine, so well deserved, your photography and writings are always so uplifting. Congrats to you dear Donna, couldn't have happened to a nicer friend. Off to look through the magazine. Have a wonderfully creative day.

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    1. Barbara, You always make me feel so good about myself. And that goodness spills over into my everyday life (my husband thanks you - happy wife, happy life!). I think of you as a sister - and you've got me considering a lensbaby!

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  5. Oh Congratulations! I saw your post in IG while I was at the gym, I couldn't wait to come home and read your blog post. You have worked very hard to master your skills and you should be proud of your accomplishments. I was just reading this morning in my C.S. Lewis devotional this..."As one of the humans has said, active habits are strengthened by repetition but passive ones are weakened. The more often he feels without acting, the less he will be able ever to act, and, in the long run, the less he will be able to feel." Obviously C.S. Lewis was talking about this in a faith context, not an artistic endeavor but it struck me just the same.

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    1. Sarah, I just love your outlook. You've really embraced this time of your life and it's been a pleasure to see you flourish. I look to your example of just how much we can learn when we embrace the journey. Your recent self-portraits were a joy - both because I can see you grow and I can see myself on the same path. Thank you for making the time to visit here!

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  6. Donna - you have every right to toot your own horn every once in a while...I want to hear that others I admire are having moments of success! I've known about uppercase but never really sought it out - I will now! You have much to share with the world and in your own quiet way, we all benefit. Reminds me of my favorite quote by Henry vanDyke - "use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those who sang best."

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    1. Amy, If anyone should be tooting their own horn, it's you! I love seeing your work in magazines. I carried my copy of American Farmhouse Style around the bookstore and told complete strangers that a friend of mine was in this magazine! Your success encourages me!

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  7. This is totally awesome, Donna! Kudos! :-D

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  8. Congratulations, Donna! So glad you share the news with us. I'm new to this magazine, but I'll see if I can find one!

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  9. Congratulations, Donna! I'm so pleased for you. :)
    I am off to check out that magazine now, have a lovely Friday ahead.

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  10. Huge congratulations Donna, so well deserved , I'm so thrilled for you :))

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  11. Oh how exciting!!! Congratulations! And it's not bragging--it's sharing joy and we all need that!!

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  12. Well congrats gal! What a wonderful post...you always do your homework and that's what I love about your postings! So a couple of things...I purchased an issue of Uppercase a year or so ago and honestly I couldn't get into it. So you've given me a renewed interest! Second, you've also given me inspiration to share as well. A year or so ago I had three of photographs in a gallery showing here in New York - chosen by Amy Arbus - Diane Arbus' daughter. I never posted about it...thinking the exact same thing you mentioned. Perhaps in a future blog I will share even though the time has passed. So you keep sharing...you keep reminding us that it's OK...because the folks that follow us are our friends and how important it is to share the good, the bad and the ugly!! Now I'm off to order that issue!

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  13. True friends celebrate each other's accomplishments - and this is truly an inspiring one, my friend! My heart was doing the happy dance as I read your post - so excited for you - so proud of you!!!

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  14. Donna, in reality (such as we lived near each other), I'd be celebrating with you taking you out to a nice lunch at one of the local tea cafe's, buy your lunch, and a treat for dessert, and anything else we could think of to do for highlighting your accomplishment! However, since I'm not there physically, I am celebrating in spirit your publications ... so very wonderful! I read this last evening on my iPod, and that device isn't my favorite for typing out a worthy note to you. As a friend, I commend you for stepping out to share your love of creativity. I've not heard of this publication, but see it has a nice variety of interesting features. I'm fond of crochet, and enjoy making things, as well as using vintage pieces made by my great aunt. We all need to celebrate our strengths and the beauty we make. I'm so pleased you shared this victory with your friends! Many congratulations!! xx

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  15. Hi Donna !

    I was so happy for you when I read the good news! My most sincere congratulations for being published in a beautiful magazine such as Uppercase… unfortunately, I’m not sure I can find it in France… would love to read your articles…
    And yes, as friends, we can’t but rejoice for such an accomplishment! And I rejoice with you Donna!
    We wish the best things and happenings for our friends and we share their joy and pride when they’ve achieved great things… we feel proud of them when their arduous work and constant passion lead them to such an acknoledgement… you thoroughly deserve to appear in this magazine and to be read by thousands of creative people…
    It’s a lot of joy and happiness to share this great event with you and your friends and I’m grateful for being among your community of friends and share this wonderful event with you.
    Oh! If only we could live closer… I would have loved to celebrate this happy event with you and your friends during a joyful party and a couple of bottles of Champagne (I live where they’re made!!).
    Your pictures are fantastic… I love the line of mail boxes… Discovered only today that you post pictures on Instagram… Not being an Instagram user, I don’t visit systematically Instagram…

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  16. Donna - I missed congratulating you on being published! This magazine looks brilliant - I am not familiar with it. I love stamps and collected them as a child...so this issue looks particularly interesting to me. And absolutely it is NOT bragging. That is part of the fun of having a blog with many like minded friends - we love what you are doing and are happy when you are formally recognized! Congratulations Donna and keep on sharing!!

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    1. Cathy, It's thanks to you that I submitted anything to a magazine at all!

      To friends, If you haven't visited Cathy or seen her published work, you're missing a special treat. She's one in a million!

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  17. As a published author and freelancer writer for the past 20 years, I struggle with this question ALL THE TIME. I hate coming across as boastful so I hold back in sharing good news. Thank you for this! And I have my copy of Uppercase nearby so I'll definitely look for your feature! :)

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    1. Ann, Looks like you have lots to brag about. Such an encouragement to see a writer flourish in her area of passion.

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  18. Thanks for sharing. I think it is wonderful when we can support others in their accomplishments. I have decided to subscribe to this magazine after revewiving the site. Congratulations to you and your accomplishments.

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    1. Hi Donna, So happy to direct you to this wonderful publication. My friend, Robin Craig of Gotham Girl Chronicles, recently wrote a post on the importance of going outside of photography for inspiration. I feel this way, too. And quality magazines, like Uppercase, certainly fit the bill!

      Would love to see your work. If you please, send an email my way so I can find you.

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