Monday, May 26, 2014

Random Moments: Social Media

There always seem to be other things I should be doing than writing a blog—so it gets neglected, wilts like a garden left to tend itself.  For the most part, everything I have to say gets put into my books or short stories—or my indexes.  Those things take up most of my time. 

I visit Facebook daily because it is my water cooler.  After sixteen years of working at home, of freelancing exclusively, social media has opened a window of communication that allows contact that I never had before.  I’m on Twitter, too, but not as much, and it’s different.  But regardless, it has taken me a while to figure how to navigate social media as an author and as a human being.  The moment I think I know my way, something changes.  The mistakes I’ve made have been many.  First off, I try to avoid topics of conflict.  Religion and politics on the Internet and in real life are polarizing enough. And honestly, I’m not opposed to those topics, I have personal religious views and personal political views that are pretty strong.  But mostly, those are privately held views, even away from the Internet.   I won’t share those here either.  Why?   First off, I have nothing original to say on either topic.  I'm opposed to hate pretty much covers it all.  The Dali Lama has said that “Kindness is my religion.”  I like that idea, and it sounds very simple, but I think it is much more difficult to put into practice than most people think.  As far as politics go, well, find any quote by Will Rogers about that topic and start from there...

I’m grateful for social media as a freelancer, as a person who sometimes does not leave the confines of his neighborhood for a week at a time.  It has reconnected me with old friends, and I have made new friends, too. There are a million bad stories, ugliness that has occurred because of social media.  I get that it’s dangerous.  But for me, it has helped reconnect me in a basic human way that was sorely missing from my life.  Yes, I know, I need to get out more, but I’ll save that post for another day..

Not that some things on Facebook haven’t pissed me off.  They have, they do.   And I used to react.  Now, I don’t.  I walk away, or look away—and here’s the key: I try my best not to take the things that piss me off personally.    

So, that need of connecting immediately has taken away my focus  from this blog.  I have a new book coming out in August, and more projects to promote and announce in coming months.  I’ll post those here, but like on Facebook, I’ll do my best to mix them with pieces of other interest.  

I’m still trying to figure out my way.  How much to share personally and professionally in this new dynamic world--and how much to keep to myself.  I’ve never been good at being a huckster, but books come and go so fast that the need to announce them is important.  But writing is only part of my life.  It’s an interesting juggling act that I’m still trying to figure out... It probably always will be.

Until next time,



Richard Prosch said...

Many are the times I have typed in a response to a Facebook post, only to think again and delete it. Never had any regrets about not entering those conversations.

Larry Sweazy said...

Yup, most of the time I do the same thing... I just tell my wife what I wanted to say, and she says, "You didn't did you?"