A writer is a writer, whether self-published or otherwise. A writer has the hard job of telling the absolute truth, whether the public agrees with it or does not! When you lose your credibility, whether in journalism, non-fiction, blogging or any other genre’ you have lost your craft. A true writer does not write to please or impress people! You are writing to inform, you are writing from a passionate belief in something, or you may be writing to get the word out about something that may be crucial and time may be of the essence. Whatever your reason is for writing, you carry a tremendous responsibility and that is to tell the truth factually and not be so creative that the truth or the facts are lost in what you think the public may want to read and hear! Truth is something the world has had a problem with from the beginning of time. Adam and Eve had trouble with telling the truth in the Garden of Eden and not much has changed through the years!
The pen is mightier than the sword and for some reason people will believe everything they see in print. Good writers are keenly aware of this and make sure to write appropriately and honestly! When the truth is not what someone wants to hear then they need to change their truth! If you don’t like the truth then let the truth change you, don’t change the truth to suit yourself! No wonder people complain so much about biased media! Why are they biased? Because they have an audience to please! They have ratings to keep up and advertisement space to fill which keeps that station afloat. How sad when ratings outweigh truth.
I can give two modern day examples and one Biblical example of a dreaded response and the consequences “pleasing people” instead of telling the truth can have. The first example is of a writer. This writer was very gifted! He was so gifted he caught the eye of Oprah Winfrey. The author was James Frey and his book was “A Million Little Pieces”. It came out later, due to a report by the “Smoking Gun”, much of his book was fabricated and not TRUTHFUL! We haven’t heard much from Mr. Frey since his interview with Ms. Winfrey where she pulled his book from her “Book Club”. He lost his credibility and in so doing he lost his craft! She had him back on her show a second time. The first time he appeared he was a “hero” of a literary work of sorts. After his lies were exposed, she brought him on a second time to pull the truth out of him and allowing him to humiliate himself quite publicly! The second example is that of a group of performers by the name of “Milli Vanilli”. They WERE a successful singing group. That is until “their success turned to infamy when their Grammy was revoked after the LA Times Chuck Philips reported that the lead vocals on the record were not the actual voices of Morvan and Pilatus  .“, according to “Wikipedia”. Pilatus allegedly later committed suicide and Morvan was never able to reach the successful career status he basically lied to have in the beginning! The third example is of King Saul from the Bible. God gave Saul very specific directions to not allow any survivors to remain after a battle. Because he was afraid of what the people would think, he saved the king of the Amalekites, Agag, and brought back the best sheep, cattle, calves, and lambs. When Samuel confronted him about it he said he did it to sacrifice them to God (there is the lie). He also let his fear of “public opinion” stop him from obeying God and his kingdom was given to another. Saul’s end, as we all know, was suicide as well. This is why it is so important to stay with the truth!
I, myself, am not going to be a “Mary had a little lamb” writer! Whether it is an honorable truth or a convicting truth, I will not trash my writings (and I did let someone talk me out of a couple of pieces…NEVER again!!), nor my obedience to God due to what people may think! I owe it to God to write what He gives me and to care about what He and He alone thinks! When a writer is responsible in this way, the outcome is much better and you can rest much easier! We need more Andy Rooney’s in this world and I pray we have them!
Stay with truth, dear writer! You are going to be met with opposition no matter what you do. Ask yourself at the end of your “piece” if you can sleep with what you have written and published knowing you did the right thing. Let this be the marker of your success!