As all aspiring writers must do, I have sold my soul to Twitter, Facebook, and the digital age. For years I lived happily without a Twitter account. My Facebook page remained stagnant, used only for the occasional (and completely harmless) online stalking of friends and family members. I knew nothing of LinkedIn or Tumbler. But once I finished my first novel and began the arduous process of publishing the work, I quickly realized that I must emerge from my happy cave and join the digital age. One year into “building my brand”, I have come to know a few truths.
Here are my top three reasons I would like to end my deal with the devil:
(If you continue reading this, thank you! But you may be offended. Consider yourself warned.)
- Ignorance was bliss. Unfortunately, Facebook and Twitter have taught me that the art of hiding the crazy is dead. Dignity and grace apparently died with it. Seriously, why do so many want the world to see their crazy? Of course, my husband constantly reminds me, “Crazy can’t diagnose crazy.” So, keep scrolling, commenting, and posting, crazies of the world. Maybe you will stumble upon an ad for psychotherapy or at least an uploaded copy of Emily Post. Oh, and, if anyone out there is working on an app that will block all political rants on my Facebook page, please send me the link. (Yes, my inner snob has hit a new high in the digital age.)
- Being good is way too easy. Natural disaster hits: “Prayers for (fill in the blank)!” A friend has a heart attack: “Praying for (fill in the blank)!” Facing a tough day: “Please pray for me today. I’m not going to tell you why, but just wanted to share something and get some online support in return because my self esteem is now connected to the number of comments and likes that I receive!” So, when we do this, how many of us actually get down on our knees and say a prayer? Or do we simply click the post button and move on to a video of a cat doing something weird?
- Common sense is dead. If you have posted a picture of yourself doing something stupid (Just how did you get so many beads during your recent trip to Mardi Gras?) or you decided to publicly vent about your employer, prepare to be fired. I hope you have updated your resume along with your Facebook status.
No, I really don’t care that you just checked into the Fabulous Hotel in Fabulous USA (Hopefully, you left your front door unlocked so the burglars won’t have to break a window in order to rob you while you tan yourself poolside.), but, alas, I will keep reading and clicking the like button, commenting and sharing. For several reasons, I cannot unplug. I will remain a resident of the social media world for the unforeseeable future. Here are my top three reasons why I cannot return to my happy cave:
- The YouTube video of the man in Mobile, AL who is convinced he has treed a leprechaun. I’ve never been prouder of my hometown. I cannot wait for the next installment. I want some more, please.
- The recent viral video of a little girl commanding her father to “Worry ‘bout yourself!” Ahhh…the wisdom of a two-year-old.
- And lastly, simply put, you are reading this blog right now. Without Facebook and Twitter you would have never found my queendom.
So, what other pitfalls have you found in the digital age? Have you sold your soul or do you find the virtual world more satisfying than reality? Turn my sermon into a conversation in the comment section!