Social Medea’s Golden Fleece

No, it’s not a misspelling. I refer to the legend of Jason and the murderous Mrs. he married. She was from a land known for its royal purple dyes: Colchis. An enchantress and princess, she gave up everything–title, family, country–for love. The endings vary, yet none are happy.

Someone always dies horribly however Medea’s tale ends.

As a recent arrival to mass social media, I am in the process of learning a lot about what I don’t want to do. Marketing one’s self, product, and ideas is no easy task. Through observing the culture, I learn what I want to do and what I do not want to do.

Blitz campaigning is definitely off my to-do list.

I am inundated with blurbs about this article or that book or this miracle cure for my first-world problems. Inundated, I am loath to say, is accurate. Having even a highly-recommended automated process send a burst of advertising like confetti drowns the message sender’s messages in their own messages. I’m startled at the sudden influx; I only want to stop the static noise. What I do not do is sort through those messages for useful things.

Am I perfect at it? Gracious me, no! I’ve just begun to see the perils and pitfalls. I will respond to individuals and send out far too much information in a short period of time. I will repeat the insights of individuals if those insights grab me. What I should be doing is giving a gold star quietly. However, I am a writer. I write myself into holes from which I worry I cannot climb out.

Social media contains within it the gift of social grace or the curse of social suicide.

I still have no idea how to get my books in front of people through using social media effectively.  Through proofreading and editing a trilogy, I did learn something about good storytelling. Now, I have three primary editing rules:

(1) Use only complete sentences;

(2) Spell the damned words correctly;

(3) If I don’t understand what I wrote, then delete it. No one should suffer that bad of prose.

The story gets buried in a blitz of nonsensical words cobbled together manically when I don’t. Social media is like six-word flash fiction: It demands tight prose and strong proofreading-and-editing before it’s disseminated.

Oh well. I’m learning. Progress is never failure, and I take forward with me that gift of hope.

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