No, that’s not the title of her book. This blog is a guest post with Lilly Gayle and her first release, Slightly Tarnished, and “something new” called Wholesale Husband.
But first Lilly wants to share some words of wisdom and, of course, I agreed. So sit up and pay attention, there maybe a quiz at the end. (just kidding <g>)
The Dangers of Social Media
Social networking can be a great promotional tool for writers. By using social media sites like Blogger, Facebook, and MySpace, authors can post blogs, announce new releases, and add buy links. Authors can make “friends” with readers and interact with other writers.
My first foray into the social media frenzy was in 2006. I wasn’t published then, but my daughter had just gotten married to a soldier and they were living in Germany. She wanted us to stay connected and uploading pictures to a website is much faster than sending email attachments. She sent pictures of Germany, and I posted pictures of home so she could still feel a part of everything that was going on here in the states.
Then in 2007, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I posted chemo pictures and surgery updates so my daughter could stay abreast of my treatments. I also used the MySpace blog to write about my thoughts and feelings. It was cathartic and it helped me stay sane.
When I was first diagnosed, I prayed not just to survive, but to survive with dignity. I didn’t want to break down or appear weak. I told anyone who asked I was doing fine, but on my blog, I posted the brutal truth. I was afraid. I never asked “why me,” but that didn’t stop me from getting depressed.
On the day my hair started falling out, I asked my husband to shave my head. That same evening, I got an email from someone I thought was a friend. Basically, she told me she thought I was self-absorbed and a liar and that she didn’t want to be my friend any more.
Seriously? I hadn’t gotten a letter like that since 5th grade. But I was an emotional wreck, no matter how brave a face I put on. So, I blogged about it. I didn’t name her, but someone very dear to me who was also friends with that person knew who I was talking about because that person sent her a copy of the email. And the person dear to my heart accused me of “airing” my dirty laundry in public and trying to “force” her to choose between me and the other person. She did choose. And it wasn’t me.
In hindsight, maybe I shouldn’t have posted something so personal. At the time, I was hurt, shocked, confused and—bald. I was in the middle of chemo and felt like crap. And I wanted someone to understand how it felt to be dumped on during one of the worst times of my life. It seemed easier to blog than talk to people.
Fast forward to 2010. My first book was published and Facebook is the new MySpace. So, I set up an author page on Facebook under my pen name. I also set up a fan page. I still maintained a Facebook page under my real name for exchanging pictures with my daughter, since she no longer used MySpace. I also started a blog on Blogger. But promoting a book requires more than Blogger and Facebook. So, I got a Twitter and Good Reads account.
Good Reads seems more geared toward readers, but I post reviews and make sure my books are available. I like Facebook better. I understand it. When someone posts something on FB, comments and replies show up under the original post. Everything seems to follow a “thread” and conversations are easy to follow. Not so on Twitter.
Comments show up in response to something someone else posted, but I can’t find the original comment or follow the thread. Most of the time, I have no clue what people are talking about. But a writer friend told me some readers hate the constant promo bombardment from writers and prefer when they interact. So, I decided to interact when I saw a comment someone posted on Twitter about not understanding women who’d rather have a bad man than no man at all. It seemed like a good conversation starter. So, underneath that, I posted: Did you ever want to tell a friend her new bf is a looser who looks enough like her ex to raise red flags?
Nothing specific. But my comment didn’t show up under the original post. It showed up by itself—as if I’d just randomly bashed someone. And when I checked my email, I found a reply on Facebook from a writer friend who said something about following mom’s advice and biting your tongue. I replied with something along the lines of “But did she have to move him in? And is handy man even a real job?” I hit
reply. And then suddenly realized my post was on Facebook. Not twitter. I forgot the two were connected!
In reality, the woman is just an acquaintance. I run into her maybe twice a year and she always has a new man in her life—men who are interchangeable. Long, greasy hair. Wife beater. Grungy. And the worse he treats her, the more in love she is. She doesn’t have a Twitter account but she might have a Facebook page. She’s not my “friend” on Facebook but six degrees of separation and all that, she could see my post. And I wouldn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.
As I was contemplating what to do about my faux pas, my brother called. He saw the post on FB and thought I was talking about my best friend’s new boyfriend, who coincidentally does look a bit like her ex-husband.
Obviously, my friend knows her boyfriend isn’t a handy man, and he’s not living in her house, but how many other people would see my post and make the same wrong assumption my brother did? And that could hurt my best friend.
I felt so stupid. And naïve!
I deleted the Facebook post. Then I spent a good fifteen minutes trying to find the freaking post on Twitter. It took some doing, but I found it. By then, there were so many new posts on Twitter that my comment was nowhere near the original comment I thought I was replying to.
Everyone knows not post their home address on social media sites and then announce they’re going to Europe for two weeks. And who’d be stupid enough to gripe about the boss if the boss is a Facebook friend? Some things are obvious. Some aren’t. So, the best advice is not to post anything on the internet if there is even one person on the planet you wouldn’t want seeing it.
And yet, here I am posting my story on a blog…where anyone can see it. So, just consider this a reminder of the unexpected dangers of social networking.
Sad but true, Lilly.
And now for the things we want to repost, splatter on Twitter, and share on Facebook–Lilly’s spectacular covers and amazing blurbs!!
Victorian romance laced with danger.
When a brooding English earl with a SLIGHTLY TARNISHED reputation marries his dead wife’s American cousin to save her from her uncle’s vengeful schemes, the sea captain’s daughter with a taste for adventure sparks desires he thought long dead.
Nicole Keller has always been headstrong and independent, but after a failed business venture and a sinking ship take her father, her home, and her childhood sweetheart, Nikki must support herself and her mother. But moving to England and marrying Chadwick Masters, Earl of Gilchrest isn’t what she has in mind. And falling in love with the mysterious earl could endanger both their lives.
And now for the something new. Coming soon–September 28th to be exact–Wholesale Husband…
She needs his name. He needs her money. But can a rich New York socialite and a poor Irish immigrant find true love in the gilded age?
Betrayed by her fiancé and heart sick over her father’s death, Clarissa Burdick is further devastated when she learns she can’t inherit her father’s company—the company she loves—until she’s twenty-five or married. And Clarissa is neither. So she sets out to find a husband strong enough to protect her from her uncle’s thugs, too uneducated to run the company himself, and poor enough to marry a woman in name only. But Irish immigrant Devin Flannery is smarter than he seems and more educated than Clarissa expects. Her Wholesale Husband soon proves a greater risk to her heart than her company.
For the past thirteen years, Lilly Gayle has found time to write in between her regular duties as a wife, mother, and radiologic technologist. But now that her two daughters are both grown and her first book has finally made it into print, she hopes to devote more time to writing and less time to such mundane things as housework.
Lilly Gayle lives in north central North Carolina with her husband of twenty-nine years and her youngest daughter who is in her third year of college. Her idea of the perfect weekend is a trip to Emerald Isle with her husband, a good book, and her laptop.
Thanks so much for coming by today, Lilly, and sharing your exciting new release! Remember, the release day is September 28th (that’s next Wednesday, people. Write it down!)
And for those of you visiting, Lilly is giving away an ecopy of Slightly Tarnished to one lucky reader. But you gotta leave us a comment to be entered!