Strictly Business


Sometimes, I have issues with keeping things strictly business with collectors now that I have written and published a memoir. For one thing, this is not a constant problem, it's just a couple of people so far, and it's not like my book is a best seller or something. But, now that some people think they "know" me, or feel I've shared something of myself with them, they feel the need to share themselves with me, and this puts me in a very strange position. I'm getting bombarded with a lot of TMI from someone that owes me payments and it's difficult to navigate. I've also felt I've had to become "friends" with a few collectors when I am only trying to be friendly and kind. What the hell am I doing wrong? This has happened on a few occasions over my career and it's not a good thing. It's not easy to be authentic without some people...maybe taking some advantage of that? Maybe it's not taking advantage as much as me not being able to properly put in boundaries. I'm not sure which.

At times, this has even made me rethink my own work. I've made a lot of personal work, which is probably my most natural way of expressing myself, and I have also tried to make work that has nothing to do with me (or at least not as outwardly personal and more ambiguous). I also like doing that too, but I don't like thinking about it too much.

Anyway, anyone else ever have this experience, or anything close to it?
I haven't, but that's because I stayed as reclusive as I could during the time I was making art. Once you put your life story out there, it was inevitable you would acquire fans who feel they have some special relationship with you just by virtue of having purchased your work, no matter if you want it. Everybody wants to tell the star all about themselves.

I wouldn't flip out too badly if it's only a couple of people. Just look at it as part of the cost of doing business.
I've had it happen a time or two but usually wind up putting a stop to it, even with hurt feelings. I don't just take people to raise that I've never even met, but some think that after you've worked for them that you are very best buddies. Some do become good friends but I'd rather just let it happen and grow at its own speed rather than have it foist on me. 😊
Maybe you need to tone down your correspondence, and not feed them. Collectors are purchasing your art, not you yourself as a living creature.
Too hard to put the jack back into the box? Cat back into the bag? The baby back into the womb? What the heck is the saying? Anyway, all this advice is good! Thank you. I can't go by another name though. Too late for that one. I need to not worry about hurting people's feelings when it comes down to it.
I am the last one to give advice, or I should be. Excuse my "tone." Anyhow, onward and upwards...
When someone becomes more friendly than comfortable, I find that delaying responses helps a lot to dilute it without hurting feelings.

But someone who owes you money is kinda tricky.

I don't share much info with my customers.
I think delaying responses is a great idea. I've been doing that and it's been working really well. :)