Raven's Rules and remembers…for those who do and those who aspire to…write.
(When you read them, please remember, these are my rules to me, you can like them, love them, hate them or think I'm crackers, no problems. I'm just sharing them in case anything strikes a chord with you and you get that light bulb moment and thing oh yes!)
Sounds posh, but believe me it isn't. This is my version of do's and don'ts. Some are learned the hard way, and some are sheer common sense.
I was a reader long before I was a writer and author, and I so remember things that irked me. Since I'm also now on the other side of the fence, I try to put them to mind before I do something that could be construed as stupid.
Firstly remember anything you put on Facebook or Twitter will be remembered and may be used against you, especially once your name is better known. If someone has annoyed you, don't go onto a social media site and slag them off. No, never, ever. Take a deep breath, and a step back. I read somewhere that you should have a think bank. Write it in there and look at it a day later. Chances are you'll take a deep breath and thank your lucky stars you didn't send it. More than likely it would look like sour grapes or jealousy and reflect badly on you. Just roll your eyes, and know fine a hell of a lot of other people will be doing the same thing.
Self promo? Yes if you don’t get your name out there how will anyone know who you are? But there's a fine like between promo and overkill. Interaction is the name of the game. Don’t expect people to like, like, like, everything of yours (on whichever site you happen to be on at the time) if you don’t like back. But and oh that is a wee word with a big meaning, do not like something and expect it to be reciprocated as a right, because it isn't—a right I mean. That attitude will get you blackballed pretty damned quick. As will spamming someone else page or taking over their posts.
And while we're on the subject, A "hello how are you I'm doing this and this and that," is not interaction. Nor is "oh I have a book out please buy my, like me," (turn cartwheels for me). That is teeth grinding narcissist behavior and sets peoples backs up. Remember, a two way street.
You like a book? Oh good, then please pop over to the site of your choice and give it five stars or whatever, and if you want to write a review, please make it constructive. I loved it or I hated it, well sorry that's no help. The author will be happy or sad according to which way you swung, but to help her progress, a few words on why is helpful. Even if it's just, the alliteration put me off, or I loved the way she described the pub.
Um, if you're an author, don't rate your own book. It hints at desperation. Of course you love it—you should do, because you wrote it. But to shove your 5 star like on the site for everyone to see (and get emails about)? No, no and no.
And never get into a discussion with someone who gives a bad review, unless you are thanking them for their constructive criticism. After all a review is merely one person's opinion, no more no less.
Enjoy what you do, listen to your voice, and remember it is unique to you. Not everyone will appreciate it, but hey, they don't have it. Yours! Don't try to copy someone lese, it won't work.
And as I had to do the other day, bit your lip and ignore those people who say they could write a book "if only they had time." No they couldn't or they would be.
If you've plowed through all of this and not thrown anything at your lap top, stuck pins into a Raven effigy, or organized a shut her up petition, thank you very much.
If not, sorry and that's it so you can go gnash your teeth knowing there's no more of this blog to annoy you.