All Things Writing

The Craft of Writing

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Social Media 101.001 FACEBOOK

Walruscarpenter_tenniel1The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of Social Media. Yes. Social Media. One can’t even be Social-Media-avoidant in Wonderland any more. Seriously – there are some things you just need to be able to understand and be facile with in Social Media if you’re to have your work and/or your website discovered. In fact, many are eschewing a website entirely. I’m not so sure about that, but let’s start with FACEBOOK.

FACEBOOK is pretty much something you’ve got to have. Your Facebook persona will be built of a Profile and a Page (or Pages) and/or a Group (or Groups). It’s not that difficult once you get it started. The main thing to remember at all times is that sometimes something works in Facebook and two days later you do the exact same thing and it doesn’t work. Or, you can do something from your phone, but not your laptop. Or, you can do it from your laptop, but not your desktop. It’s not you. It’s Facebook – shame on them – but you’ve still gotta deal with it. Just stay calm and work around it.

Everyone on Facebook has to have a Profile. The profile asks you basic information about yourself. The reason you need this is that every Facebook whatever has to trace back to an individual who is at least 13 years of age. (In some cases, this has not been a problem for longer than we care to mention.) Once you have your profile, you can add a background image at the top, as well as a profile image. I will describe how to create custom images in the proper size in another post. For now, choose something from their library so that you have more than a pathetically newbie Profile page. This is my Profile page.

Now that you have a Profile, you can create something else. Let’s say you want a Page. This is someplace for you to post things about an interest. When I created my Profile, I wasn’t yet up to using Facebook for anything about my writing because I was using my website. This is the page for my KidWrite Language Arts program. I’ll create one for writing this week and use it in the next post so you can see what that might look like.

Most of the Groups I’ve created are for members only. Here is the link to my Bridge Science group that is public. It’s still in the early stages, so it doesn’t look much different from a Page. It is, though, because I can do a chat in there or easily create a poll.

Take a look at these. Let me know if you have questions about Profiles, Pages, or Groups. I’ll be back next week with more. Promise!

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Social Media Maven? Me?

I am not a person who ran to embrace social media. In fact, my very favorite social media cartoon is the one right here. Still, I know when it’s time to join the crowd in order to reach the crowd.

Social Media

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Social Media – Oh My

I have dabbled in the world of Facebook, flirted in the direction of Twitter, dipped a toe in the boards on Pinterest, and created an Instagram account for the sole purpose of keeping in touch with my kids. My newest venture calls for me to become something of a Social Media Maven. To say this has never been a cherished desire is to put it mildly. But – especially given that I had no choice – I’ve dived in and surfaced to report that it’s not so bad. Continue reading

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The Changing Nature of News Coverage

Unknown-5I’m glued to my video stream – as are many of you, I’m sure – as events in Boston unfold. I can’t help but remember back to 9/11, when the source of ongoing news was the television.

I’m not one to watch the same coverage over and over and over. I also tend not to watch most unfolding news coverage because frankly, I don’t think most of what is shared is information that should be shared. My concern is that it provides “tips and tricks” for those who are intent on causing harm while giving me information I simply don’t need.

Maybe it’s because Boston is in a part of the country I know well. Maybe it’s because it is such a horrific story. Maybe it’s because it is all unfolding in real time. Whatever the reason, it’s a story I want to follow. It’s also a story that has made extraordinary use of social and digital media. From smart phone footage to Twitter tweets, streaming video, and text message alerts, the events of this week have unfolded in a way that can be followed independent of a conventional television set. Continue reading


Blog Stats

What can I say? I’ve been studying my blog stats like a miser counting his gold coins.

I’ve read everything I can find on click counts, views vs visitors, the use of ….more in posts, linking internally, linking externally, linking extra terrestrially. I’ve also read and practice the publicize tips through Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest… People who haven’t seen me in years are starting to hate me!

But those stats. Those stats are so alluring.  Continue reading

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Has anyone else noticed that writers don’t just write any more? Maybe they never did, but I distinctly remember not doing a lot of what I now do when I first started freelancing. What am I talking about? This whole social media – presence thing.

In the past two weeks I have created a podcast, burned a feed, submitted the podcast to iTunes, pleaded with them to help me switch to a different feed, tweaked the feed, and seen it all appear in iTunes – pretty much as I’d envisioned it. Continue reading

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Here a Meme. There a Meme.

All of the sudden, “meme” is the hot word in my life. It’s as if a cosmic button has been pushed and meme is the word du jour, each and every jour.

So what the heck is a meme?

Here’s one definition from a Google search on “What’s a Meme?”

meme  /mēm/ 

  • An element of a culture or behavior that may be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, esp. imitation.
  • An image, video, etc. that is passed electronically from one Internet user to another.

But the true shout out goes to my friend Barbara Krasner! She supplied this link for those of us who might otherwise be meme-less!