I’m one of those people who doesn’t people very well. Like, I get into a physical space with a bunch of humans and I shut down. Freak out. Probably blurt something indescribably stupid. Don’t even give this girl a drink, because literally the only thing saving her from embarrassing herself is her sort of ability to keep her mouth shut.
Online communication has built-in protections for weirdos like me. I can think the indescribably stupid thing. I can even type it out. And then -- and this is the beautiful part -- I can delete it.
Sometimes even after I post it I can delete it.
So, knowing what a life-saver social media has been for me, you’d think I’d be on all the platforms doing all the things, right? Truth is, I’m not. I like Twitter for communicating with industry folks, Facebook for chatting with friends and readers (lots of overlap there), Instagram for spamming the world with pics of my pets.
Which is not to say that I don’t know, on an intellectual level, that there’s a lot more out there, or that the other platforms and usages can be great for book promotion. Earlier this week, Jeffe Kennedy suggested asking some younger folks for tips on finding the hip apps and tricks. And yeah, you can do that. I’ve queried the smaller people who live in my house, and they’re happy to tell me about YouTube and Twitch and “famous YouTubers,” which is apparently a thing and why-even-is-that? My reactions have varied from horror to dismay.
Remember what I said about physically being a room with people? How it’s deeply un-fun? Videoing or even podcasting myself would be exactly the same: intrusive, revealing, terrifying, and almost guaranteed to be boring for you. It’s not my comfy place. Sorry kids, I am resigned to being perpetually uncool.
So my short answer to the question this week -- how do you keep up with the trends and changes in social media? -- is that I don’t. And I’m pretty comfortable stewing in my ignorance. (Get off my lawn.)