Léna is also a Regional Manager for Writopia Lab whose mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing.
"Well, the question is, what do you want to believe? Do you want to live in a world where things are possible, or in one where they aren't?" Cin, Edges.
Thursday, January 26, 2012
Author Page: Do You "Like" Me? and Other Marketing Insanities
What does this have to do with the insanity of marketing? Well, I'll tell ya.
Saturday night I went to bed early with my feverish daughter, and was toolin' around Facebook when I decided to throw caution to the wind and create a more official "author" Facebook page. I already have a page for Edges, created over a year ago in the lead up to publication, watching way too closely for my mental health at the rate it's "likes" were ticking upward. I naively hoped that my book would take the world by storm - instead it's been a slow build.
Just the way our careers should be. Yet publication, and the need to be "liked" has been a challenge to my maturity. It makes me uncomfortable because I feel both needy and tacky. Dirty.
Although Facebook and other social media has been a good time and an incredible tool for creating community, I have often felt like a fifteen-year-old all over again - who doesn't experience a flush of excitement when a comment or a post garners fun or thoughtful interaction? And then the opposite - it's even easier on Facebook to compare our insides to other people's outsides and judge ourselves based on who "likes" us. Sometimes I just want to delete my accounts just so I can focus on my writing.
Yet I am an author, and need to use the tools at my disposal. I have to treat myself like a business, and the fact is that I wrote EDGES years ago. I have written two (as yet to be published) novels since then. I run an after-school creative writing program, I live and breathe writing. I need to have another page where I can post things that are not necessarily related to Edges. And Facebook makes it so darn easy!
My author page. I had 40 "likes" in the first half hour, 80 "likes" in the next half hour. All friends full of love and support. Phew!
The goal? To increase business, to reach more potential readers of my blog and my book(s).
So. The next few sentences are not going to be pretty - they're going to highlight an insecurity that I need to keep in check: I have to admit that I've been obsessively checking my page for new "likes". 145, 146, 147 . . . I have to seriously get over it. After all, I've been blogging regularly for two years now (oh! I missed my anniversary?!) and I "only" have 158 followers, yet I still write.
How many "likes" do I need? Will it ever be "enough"?
It's foolish to focus on that.
Writing is the way I process the world, and if I stop because I'm uncomfortable, because I'm not popular "enough" then I will be denying myself the key to my personal freedom.
Marketing is a tool to use and not be used by, but I like that my imperfections remind me of my vulnerability and my need for humility. It keeps me authentic. Don't you agree?
And yes, go "like" my page! And follow my blog! ;-)