Alright, already! I did it – connected this blog to a Twitter account (@ridiculouswidow, because someone already had ridiculouswoman) and Facebook, where I recreated a page for it, which was no small feat, because Facebook’s soulless algorithm didn’t believe I was me.
It thought using my logo as the profile picture on my personal page, which I have to have to have a Page page, which is the only way WordPress can be connected to Facebook to automatically post your posts on a Page, was “suspicious.” It said the first post I added, which said I created the account so I could have a Page, violated “community standards.” It seemed to think I was impersonating myself and locked the new account. It asked me for a photo that looked like me, and I sent one, and it still didn’t believe me, and disabled the new account, thereby destroying two hours work in setting up the page.
Facebook, dear, I am not some Russian bot loosed upon your bandwidth to wreak havoc across the land. I’m a short, stout, suburban widow who writes a blog. Is that so hard to believe? I almost decided not to bother trying again.
But resistance is futile. I must have a “platform,” that virtual thing you stand on to convince literary agents and small publications that you’ve got something people might want and your writing is worth a look. Ergo, I must have a social media “presence.”
Things haven’t been going well on the job front or the query front, so I figured I’d better get serious about building the “platform” –
I’m working to overcome my social impairment enough to think of something to tweet and people to follow, and to gather some new readers, commenters, and “likers.” I hope to build a larger community of wonderfully, um…eclectic people (that’s enough italics for today, old girl) out there who actually enjoy reading what I write, even if the subject matter is a little all over the place.
Because in addition to the problem I identified with my book (no grand social themes, except cancer and autism, which affect more and more people every day, and love and death, which affect everyone), I’m not the “marginalized voice” they all seem to want (except for my age). I have also
belligerently deliberately avoided strictly confining myself to a “niche” like all those “how to succeed in blogging without really writing” pundits demand – I want my “niche” to be 800 words of something worth reading. Oh, and a few published books, so I can legitimately add “author of…” to my bio (and someone will add it to my obit, when the time comes).
I decided when I started this blog that, although I would write about grief and life as a widow, I didn’t want to be a “professional widow” – I want to be a writer – an engaging, entertaining, occasionally heartstring-plucking and often, I hope, funny, writer.
So, the “Twitterverse” and
the Empire Facebook will now have the benefit of my blatherings, or links thereto, at least.
Starting with my next post (I thought we decided enough!)
Because I’m pretty sure if I post this to Facebook, their soulless algorithm will shut me down again, just for saying I don’t like Facebook. Today as I was setting it back up, it thought it found “suspicious activity” in my account again, and made me prove who I was two more ways before it let me back in. So I put the actual photograph I cartoonified to make my logo on there as my profile picture. See, Facebook? That IS me! (oh, all CAPS now?) Take that, Facebook!
There are a lot of not-nice people on social media. But by avoiding politics and “niches” I hope to interest a few of the nicer people – people who like words, reading, gardening, stargazing, redecorating, failing and trying again, laughing, crying, loving their kids, remembering their lost loved ones, and being gentle in the face of human foibles and frailty.
I hope we can learn something, or share something, or just commiserate along the way.
So, welcome, Tweetie birds, and hello, again, Facebook friends, if you manage to find me.
After my next post (well, the CAPS were too shouty!)
But this one is just for you guys – current followers of this blog, some of whom have been with me since the first few posts – it’s a comfort (and a bit of a thrill) to know you’re on the receiving end of this, and, I hope, actually reading it and enjoying it from time to time. And liking, commenting, sharing with others who might.
Stepping reluctantly, tentatively and fretfully into, or back into, the social media morass, I remain,
Your skeptical, resistant, but biting-the-bullet and getting it done,