Does Anybody Out There Like Me?

YIP Day 305 - Dale Carnegie

Image by Auntie P via Flickr

Writing can be a lonely profession, if you let it be, especially for those who are shy or introverted. Yeah…that would be me, in new situations anyway. So embarking on a writing career, knowing full well I will have to talk to people I don’t know and, from time to time, present myself to a group of strangers as an intrepid professional in order to market my books and myself, would be giving me lovely white knuckles and a death grip on my husband’s arm while begging him to do it for me.

Contrary to the impression I’ve given you so far, I’m a very social person, but, with new people, I feel like they are looking at me as if I have three heads when I speak up. What I have learned to do is forge ahead anyway. It’s really scary to do that at first, but do it once and the second time will be easier…trust me. I have to credit an employer I had years ago at the Dale Carnegie Institute. I was 22 and he was  a handsome white-haired man with the kindest voice. Part of my job was cold-calling potential customers-probably the hardest thing I ever had to do up to that point in my life (childbirth was much harder). He said, ‘Close your mind to the fear, smile and pretend you’re talking to me.’ It took practice but, it did work. Since then, closing my mind to the fear is how I have gotten through many daunting moments.

Facebook and Twitter are my best friends, now. I can connect with people (other writers, publishers/editors/agents, and marketing experts), talk to and get to know them without having to deal with that face-to-face fear. Marketing myself and my book just got a whole lot easier and more comfortable. Oh, I know I’ll have to go out in the world one day soon and face real strangers, but I’ll close the door on my fears. Meantime, I’m having fun connecting with folks all over the world through blogs and social networks. In fact, one of my ‘friends’, Kristen Lamb, wrote a blog post on making friends on social networks and promoting yourself in the bargain -to have a friend you must be one first- with great tips to get you going. Here’s a reposted teaser:

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10 Ways To Improve Your Likability Quotient

The single largest determining factor as to whether a person will succeed or not on social media is our L.Q. Heard of I.Q.? Well, L.Q. is your Likability Quotient. We don’t care how smart you are as much as we care if we LIKE you. When working on our social media platform, the ever-present questions should always be: Do people like me?

I know it sounds crazy, but it is true. And there is no need to panic. Calm down. You don’t need to hide all your D&D books and tell your friends to get in the closet. This isn’t high school, where popularity is based on stupid stuff. Likability is important. Why? We hang out with people we like. We promote them. We go out of our way for them. We want them to succeed. Our information can be the best on the web, but when pitted against another blogger with not-as-great-information…but she connects to readers and we don’t? The likable blogger will win. If she promotes others and we don’t? Again, she will win.

Being an excellent writer is not enough. 

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Kristen’s an expert on this topic, so please read her full post here. In her post she also lists some fantastic links to fun and informative sites. She has also written a book called, We Are Not Alone, The Writer’s Guide to Social Media. Please click on the title to check it out.

Have you had trouble making friends? Are you interested in promoting yourself or your blog with social media?

Don’t let me be lonely, leave a comment! If you think your friends would enjoy this blog, please send them here. Follow me on Twitter and Facebook.

Now for my Wednesday links to today’s top ten:

Want some laughs? Go to Crabby Old Fart. For information about your favorite music artists and to listen to their music try Appleseed Recordings. What’s up in space? Check out Space Weather . Foodie? Go here 101 Cookbooks. Want to create believable personalities for your characters? Read Laurie Campbell’s article on personality types. For freelance writing opportunities, click here. Exploring more practical ways to use your mind? Lite Mind . A hilarious site about “Chewing on the gristle of kids, parenting, and fatherhood. It’s an acquired taste.”  For articles on books, reviews and book lists, go to The Millions. Suggestions for places to go and things to do from a lifelong traveler and author, Off The Beaten Path.

So there you have it! Have fun exploring! Don’t forget I love to hear from you.

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6 thoughts on “Does Anybody Out There Like Me?

  1. Pingback: Fidalgo Island Writer’s Guild Social Media Class « A Writer's Blog

    • Anita, thanks so much for commenting and welcome to Savvy Ink-Slinger! Please visit again and, if you wish, you can subscribe to my posts at the top right corner of the page. Hope to see you around!

  2. Yeah…… that first paragraph DID NOT describe you at all. You are a very social person, so this was surprising to read. But I think we all have a bit of that in ourselves that maybe alot of others never see, but we see so clearly. Keep up the good writing! Am enjoying it.

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