Here's the deal... Social media has made it a hundred times easier for people to connect. That includes authors and readers. Sounds solid? However, through being on Facebook and twitter with my "author sites" I've realized just how poorly some people use it. There's definitely a fine line between being yourself and authentic, and coming off phony. There's also a fine line called oversharing.
Since being friends with authors and bloggers on my page, I've realized just how much drama goes on at events, behind the scenes, and between everyone. I wasn't stupid enough to think it wasn't going on, but still. It's a little awakening when you find out certain things through social media. And in my opinion, it's wrong. Why are you going to blast someone in a group or share their status and complain about how they're wrong? The indie community is great, but honestly, if you get on an author's bad side, you better watch your back. You get on a bloggers bad side, same thing's true. Your personal messages may be shared, your emails even (I've seen this). I know it's true for anyone, but I'm specifically speaking on the author dynamic with Facebook.
I guess there was some drama at an event the past weekend and by Monday morning I could've told you exactly what happened, who was upset with who, and what was going on. That's terrible! I wasn't even at the event and I know scene by scene what went down. I find it appalling that authors and bloggers are willing to air their dirty laundry in the form of statuses and PMs. Don't they realize that readers are their friends, too, and can see these aggressive, whiney posts?
I like to think of social media as a tool. I use it to talk to readers, promote my books, chat with some industry friends, and share new content. I don't use it to complain, bully, put people down, or post passive-aggressive statuses about people I know I'm friends with and will most likely see the post. Maybe I'm just old fashioned because I don't see the point. If I have a problem with a blogger or another author, I will email them or at the very least PM them with my issue and ask them to email me back. There's no reason to blast someone when you don't know their side.
Think of a movie. As a movie-watcher (What the hell is this called? Viewer? haha) your experience is this... You see trailers and are intrigued. Then on the release or when it's in theaters, you purchase a ticket and go see the movie. If you love it, you may rave about it, post a review or star rating, or tell your friends to go. If you really loved a director or actor you'll go on their fan page, like them, follow them so you know what they have coming up, maybe post a little love note, tweet them. That's your experience.
Let's say the actor is in a fight with the director. They post on Facebook about how their experience on set was terrible and how director 1 was a jerk and stupid and unprofessional. Director 1 posts about how actor was high the entire time and couldn't act and was unprofessional. In what world are you going to want to see that movie? I wouldn't. That's so completely unprofessional and turns me off like nothing else. Plus with the two badgering each other, nobody really cares about the movie anymore. The drama is what people are viewing like the movie.
I guess my bottom line is that everyone in the indie community wants everyone else to succeed (or should). Authors rely on bloggers to help them with promotions, covers, tours, and getting their book seen. Bloggers rely on readers to view their pages, like their posts, review, share. Readers rely on authors to put out solid material that's presented professionally and is quality. It's a big old circle and when someone breaks off, it's broken completely. There's no reason a reader needs to know what's going on behind the scenes. Sure, you can share the positive stuff like I do with my street team and those readers I've formed relationships. But I can honestly say not a single person on my Facebook knows my relationships with professionals. I would never post about a bad experience on social media or anything related to that. It's tacky.
And by posting about how Author 1 hates Blogger 2 and they won't work together anymore, you're off-putting someone. If a reader enjoys that blog, guess what? Author just lost a potential reader just by voicing that opinion against the blog. Nobody is forcing authors to use certain blogs. You aren't required to be on their pages. And guess what? You can even say you don't want to be featured on a blog if you don't want. But in my opinion, that makes no sense! More blogs = more visibility.
At the end of the day, an author's job is exactly that, a job. Be a professional and learn to work with people you may not like. Or else you're opening up the behind the scenes doors for all to see, including readers, who may change their opinion of you, which changes their opinion of your work. And while I'm at it, please dear god don't post religious or political posts on Facebook. People are just plain stupid by doing that. Again, you're alienating yourself against potential readers just by who you voted for or what religion you are. Leave that veil up and show who you ARE. Readers like that a whole lot more.
Weigh in! What do you think?
© Taylor Lavati 2017
What Readers Have to Say...
"An absolutely heart wrenching read that shows us that at times no matter how much we hope, darkness will find its way to win. "
-Blogger's From Down Under for A Reliant Love
"So this book is the ultimate love story. I like how two ordinary people who is so different and still so alike in so many ways can overcome everything together."
-Angelica Berglund for For The Love of Hockey
"I never thought I would read a "zombie book", much less love one. The Last Legacy really surprised me. Even with the whole people-eating-people thing, it was a fantastic book"
-Melannie S for The Last Legacy
"I could not wait to start book two. If this book was as good as book one, then I knew I wouldn't be disappointed. It wasn't as good as book one...it was better. "
-Keely Retchloff for Finding Sam
"The powers, the love, the excitement, the drama kept me so enthralled. If you are looking for a GREAT series about true love and mythology, look no further... I wish I could rate 10 stars! Definitely recommend this whole series to all my book loving friends!"
-The Book Blog for A Curse Books Trilogy
"For the Love of Ash" by Taylor Lavati was a rare 5-star read for me. I honestly find many typical romances rather dull and predictable. This was not the case at all here; there was nothing average about the romance, overall storyline, and the long list of supporting characters."
-Summer's Book Blog for For The Love of Ash
"Wingless isn't what I would normally pick up and read, but thought I'd try it out and I am so glad I did. The characters and "worlds" she creates are done so well that you can actually picture them and feel like you are there right along with the characters."
-JLH for Wingless
For The Love of Hockey | January 2016
The Price of Love | 2017