We have all been there: sucked into the entertainment that social media provides where two or more authors are engaged in an internet rivalry fit for the gods. We grab our popcorn and go back and forth between the two profiles to read the hard hitting subs and direct shots that is available for the world to see. We read through the comment threads to find more drama; to watch the hateful fire spread between more contenders; to digest the "tea" as some would call it and then quietly discuss the day's events with our associates because nothing is more interesting than an internet feud. I have experienced my own bout of internet beef and drama and although to this day I still consider it justified, I realize now that there were other ways I could have resolved my issue.
But we live and we learn, right?
Since then, I prefer peace over everything. I don't do drama. My energies are focused on the expansion of my platform as an author and a coach and the day to day goals that I have set as it relates to my personal life. I will unapologetically DELETE and BLOCK all that will distract me from my purpose.
And that's on "Mary had a little lamb..."
Your reputation is EVERYTHING in this material world. Your past and your present can affect future opportunities because there is VALUE in how you present yourself and your business to the world. That old saying "All publicity is good publicity"- even if it's negative, only works for certain situations and individuals. It does not apply to everyone. Many of us have been brainwashed by reality television and there are those - even authors- who cannot make the distinction between the scripted drama that occurs on television and the drama that they themselves create on their platforms. Yes, it does draw attention to you and your platform. However, your beef or feud with another author will mostly attract those fascinated by the conflict and not your work. I myself have many a time rushed towards a post I caught a glimpse of or somehow heard about just to find out the scoop. The individual could be a bestselling author with a hundred titles under his or her belt but none of that would interest me because I am there for one purpose only: information. Drama. Tea. Entertainment. Once I accomplish what I set to accomplish I move on without another thought of that author or what he or she may sell.
People are not always mindful of the energy that they attract too. If you find yourself beefing with one, you will find yourself in the center of another feud with others. Most of your "supporters" will probably only follow you because they are a fan of the toxic entertainment that you bring. And soon enough, problems, conflict, drama, and feuding will be what you are known for. And who wants to build a foundation on chaos? And you have to think, who would want to WORK with someone who is always in the midst of a quarrel?
You never know who is watching. Imagine an agent or a potential business representative scouting for someone to work with and he or she happens to come across your titles. The next step is scoping out your social media profiles and...my, my, my... a recent post from a week ago is stumbled upon wherein there was heated engagement between yourself and another author or a post that reads something to the effect of "I stay bossin' up on bitches" - or something like that. What in the world...?
Confrontational. Problematic. No thank you.
You are what you post, what you share, what messages you deliver. You may not know it, but you could have very well put the nail in your own literary coffin by deterring someone from wanting to work with you or simply take interest in your work. Because of social media, readers can have access to who you are in real life. Gone are the days of a small author bio found in the back of a paperback that gives little information about the author. Now readers can see who you are, who your family is; how you are living; who you are sleeping with; etc.. And because we live in a world based off of "likes", readers often decide whether or not if they will read your work by how they feel about you.
One bad feud has ended quite a few authors before they even really began. Don't allow social media to determine who you are. You have control over your platform. Your image is your brand. Instead of focusing your energies on stirring the pot, identify your niche; figure out who your audience is and what they are interested in reading and start there. Use your talent to sell your books. Post snippets and excerpts of your work to SHOW that your books are worth reading. Research how to run ads successfully. Network with other authors and learn from them.
You have to look at it this way: what happens when the drama dies down? What are you going to do? Start some mess again because that is the ONLY way you know how to draw attention to yourself or your books? Drama gets old after a while and it wont take long for folks to pull your card.
Until next time...