still struggling with the marketing aspects of writing, especially when
it comes to Facebook and Twitter. I’ve found both of them quite
difficult. How are we supposed to know whom to accept as our friends
and the proper way to communicate with them?
I recently received some new
followers on Twitter—folks I don’t know. Others in the same predicament
might have automatically followed back, but I couldn’t. I have issues.
As I’ve done in the past, I
checked one of the profiles, even involved my husband to get his
opinion. I don’t need any more trouble in my life, thank you very much.
The man had no followers listed,
so I inspected his Tweets. The string of obscenities there, let alone
the racial slurs, could have lit up the countryside on a dark, cloudy
I blocked him—then prayed for
The other new follower, a fellow
writer, seemed to be a nice guy. When I checked his bio, I discovered
he wrote horror novels. Okay, not my favorite, but I can
handle it. But after I observed the pictures he had posted
there, which would give serial killers nightmares, along with some
obscenities on his posts, I decided not to follow him.
See what I mean? This isn’t
easy, let me tell you.
On the flip side, some people
have ignored my requests, and a few have stopped following me
altogether. The little lamb chops kicked me to the curb without even
Because I hadn’t posted
obscenities, let alone any other vile material before they discarded
me, I asked myself what I had done wrong. My pea-sized brain couldn’t
conjure up anything of significance, so I went to my beloved.
“Do you think I offend people,
Talk about a loaded question.
“What do you mean?”
“All this Twitter and marketing
stuff. When I don’t talk to anyone, I’m not being friendly. When I do?
Well, I just don’t understand. Maybe I’m too friendly.”
“No, Deb. That’s not it.”
“Like I said, I’m not
“No. You’re, um, open—out there
with things. Other people have the same thoughts as you do, but you
just blurt them. They probably have a hard time with you, especially if
they want to convey a certain image.”
Wow. Can’t even take me
out in public. Thanks, my little dumpling. I feel so much better now.
“So I’m supposed to pretend to
be someone I’m not, just for the sake of appearance?”
“No, honey, you’re not.” A
spark lit his eyes. “Hey, remember the guy you told me about, what’s
his name, the one who was the head of the publishing company?”
I didn’t understand what this
individual had to do with the topic. Focus, honey. Focus.
A few years ago, I felt
impressed to send this prominent person an encouraging e-mail, right
before the economy took a downward spiral. His reply was most gracious,
which I had immediately reported to my husband.
“Why don’t you pitch your book
to him?” he said.
I shook my head. “No.”
“I didn’t even tell him I’m a
“Deb, this could be your big
“No. If I do, it’s going to
take away from what God wants him to have. All he’s going to see is yet
another wannabe author trying to get her foot in the door.”
“Oh . . . you’re right.”
My jaw dropped. The man said I
was right. I wanted to do a happy dance across the kitchen.
tapped my toe on the floor, still not able to figure out why my husband
had brought this man up. What did he have to do with my followers on
Nothing, in my humble opinion.
Then I recalled a certain agent
I had recently followed. Soon after, I un-followed him. (Sorry, Mr.
Agent.) It was only because I wanted to send him a manuscript and
didn’t want him to think I was trying to rub shoulders with him
So I followed one of his
associates instead, thinking I could keep up on the current news with
This marketing business is way
But why was I thinking about
these two men?
Wait a minute. My husband.
I pondered how I treat others.
As soon as my new friends showed me kindness, especially a brother or
sister in Christ, I was off and running. My lips flapping in the breeze
as though I’d known them my whole life. It didn’t matter if they were a
famous speaker, author, editor, or agent. I chatted away because I felt
comfortable around them.
But I didn’t stop to consider
they might not feel the same way.
Blasted man is right
again. Perhaps I should sew my lips shut.
I blamed it on my past. After
being in an abusive relationship years ago, I got to where I was afraid
to say anything to anybody, which is the reason it took me so long to
get on Facebook and Twitter. Now it was as though someone had loosed my
tongue. (I don’t think this is what T.D. Jakes had in mind when he
said, “Woman, thou art loosed!”)
Or could it have been because of
two of my older brothers? The men can chat with a fencepost. Maybe I
got my socializing skills from them.
No matter how I tried to color
it, I had to find a balance in all of this.
Just because I’ve found a new
friend doesn’t mean I invite him to Junior’s bar mitzvah, laugh at
something, which might not have been meant to be funny in the first
place, or deliver my snarky personality in narcotic-like doses. Okay,
so I’m not Jewish, and there’s no son named Junior, but you get the
Please pray for me as I learn
this new dance. With Twitter and Facebook thrown into the mix, one can
have many partners. I just have to know when to sit out and when to
excuse the partners who step on my toes, which means I’ll have to
excuse myself first.
Like I said before, this
marketing business sure is difficult.