A few months ago, I addressed the growing discourse between authors and readers via Social Media. You can read that here. Recently, not that I give myself that much credit, but I’ve noticed that not much has changed. In fact, it’s getting worse. I don’t know what the problem is but I know how to fix it.
There needs to be a mandatory author-reader etiquette “class” implemented by Goodreads, Facebook, and other social media sites that you have to pass before you’re allowed to interact with readers and authors. The level of disrespect from readers and authors alike is off the charts. There should be a positive union between authors and readers because you can’t have one without the other.
There are too many incredibly talented authors ready to stop writing because readers keep crossing the line and too many authors losing readers because they don’t know how to act on social media.
To all the readers reading this:
Writing a book is not easy and publishing a book is even harder. And sometimes it’s difficult to accept the fact that everyone is not going to like something that we love so much. Still, readers, it’s not your job to make us feel like shit because you didn’t like the book or didn’t understand the book.
Coming on our pages and screaming that our plot didn’t make sense or that you hate my characters is not going to make me a better or more entertaining writer. If I write a book about domestic abuse and you don’t like books about domestic abuse, it’s not your responsibility to tell me how awful of a person I am for writing a book about a subject that makes you uncomfortable.
I’m not going to apologize for saying this because it needs to be said. Don’t read books where the subject matter offends you. You choose what you spend your money on. My book is just one of millions to choose from. I’m sure you’ll find something that is more suitable to your liking. There are groups and book clubs put together solely for the purpose of talking about books. An author’s page just isn’t the place to express your dislike.
And authors who are reading this…
Sometimes, we just have to let shit go. Get you some author friends who you can vent to about the crazy stuff that gets posted on your page. Post your excerpts, contests, covers and interact with those who mean you no harm. But don’t get on Facebook and go back and forth with people who do not have your sanity or best interest at heart. I mean, if you’re a published author, you already know that holding on to some semblance of sanity is important. You have kids and families and jobs to think about. Keep the drama in your books. Put that energy in your work.
Keep your little piece of the Internet reader friendly and vice versa.
Okay, I’m done. Now I have a headache.