Random thoughts on our impending doom and everyday life, courtesy of a Romance Writer who occasionally feels the need to talk like a Sailor.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Etiquette by me... because stranger things have happened.

My husband won’t tell me what to write about on my blog. I don’t know what his problem his. Something about my interrupting him in the middle of his busy important work day when he is on a deadline and overstressed and blah blah blah. Aren’t we all? He’s refusing to discuss my favourite TV or movie or whatever random bit of crap currently holds my attention courtesy of the internet. He apparently doesn’t care. Rude, much? I know! Like marriage was meant to be easy. As. If.

Birthday boy or not, hogging the cake is way uncool, Rodney.
Therefore, we shall discuss manners. It could have been priorities and my husband’s lack of them, but for now let’s roll with manners. Due to the rise of Email and Facebook and Twitter and every other damn mode of communication we have at our finger tips, manners has become a bit of an issue. Who do you follow on Twit? What if they don’t follow you? What if they’re having a conversation with someone and you’ve had the funniest darn one-liner of all time appear in your head and are just dying to insert it? What do you do? What? WHAT? #convointruder only gets you so far. The lines are blurred and the honest answer is – I don’t know. When does friendly become stalker painful? What if you’re following someone and they don’t follow you back? What to do? And humour, it’s a bitch and it doesn’t always carry well, no matter the amounts of ;) attached.

The propensity for us to curl up into our paranoid, self-obsessed, anti-social geeky little shells is high given the stresses inflicted by the abundance of chat thrust upon us. And let’s face it, for writers at least, the introversion thing generally rings true. Social graces aren’t always rocking and rolling. Or maybe that’s just me. It’s probably just me.  See – PARANOIA!!! F*ck it. Go forth with good intentions and learn when to back off. Hopefully. But here are some things to think about...

Be Generous – If someone @’s you then reply. Unless you’re the President of the United States or Neil Gaiman... you know what I mean. Go on, it won’t hurt you to make friends. Much. Or it shouldn’t.

Think Twice – I could perhaps benefit from this one. Because that joke about cat poop I just put on Facebook, well... I don’t think it’s going to go over so well. But it made me laugh... but then there’s your audience to consider. And perhaps good taste. Oh well.

Act Appropriate – There was an interesting debate going on about the content of blogs and such like being G rated across the board. Umm, no. But do be a dear and give a warning. And remember, there are times and places. Potty humour aside, maybe the F-bomb doesn’t belong on Twitter and FB. I dunno. Are you going to peeve more people than you impress? Should it matter? What if you’re some free radical crazy boozing it up and having a blast? Well? So go for it. But remember, if people are tuning you out then thems the breaks. Have you considered the well bred * insertion into your language? I think it looks cute. I really like it. Yeah, M*t*er F*c*er!!! Or perhaps the abbreviated WTF? Consider.

I’m not telling you to express yourself in ways that are untrue to your wholesome loveliness. I’ve been accused of being crass on more than one occasion. But it can pay to think about what you’re putting out there. We’re all learning on the fly, this is the truth. And if you’re online in a professional capacity then it’s worth contemplation. I myself have an L plate stuck to my forehead and maybe this was all to get it straight in my own head, but I hope some of this has been of use.

One last hard definite for people of the writerly persuasion...

Don't send nasty crap to Publishers or Agents when they reject you – It makes me sad that this even needs to be stated and yet I keep seeing it coming up time and again. Don’t do it. Pointless. Unprofessional. And maybe the catharsis is not so helpful if you just vent and jump up and down and wave your arms and sh*t. Maybe you should take some time and figure out if there was actually something to what they said. You never know. But if you can’t take rejection then boy are you in the wrong business. This applies to book reviewers and competition judges too. You will never please everyone and not everyone’s going to love you. Walk away.  So they didn’t get your tortured tale of torrid love between the Billionaires Undead Virgin Bride and whoever. Move on! If you can’t think of anything nice to say then thank them for their time and leave it be. Or better yet, say nothing.


  1. I'm always paranoid about jumping into a conversation on Twitter but then, it's a public forum. It's not like sneaking up to someone on the bus and earwigging on their conversation. It's on Twitter. It's public. And a lot of tweeps post a line just to spark a conversation off.
    You're right about the introvert bit. But I've learnt that if I don't dive into the stream I miss out on so much.
    Some people post that they don't want to be thanked for every RT they do. Sometimes I thank peeps and sometimes I don't. And sometimes I find myself RTing the same person's stuff several times and feel I'm being all stalkery and creepy. What the heck. They can always block me. Or if I know them slightly, maybe they'll be kind enough to tell me I've gone OTT?
    And yeah, what is it with husbands that they won't play ball about blog topics and brainstorming?!?! :-P

    1. It's all so fluid and crazy, I don't think there are any definite right or wrongs with a lot of this stuff. If it feels good, do it. And then do it some more. It'll either work or it won't. I think you're right about diving in. Very right.

      As for husbands... I dunno. So sad. Like discussing my crap constantly isn't fascinating... his issue, not mine.

      Thanks for stopping by, Pippa! Always lovely to chat.

  2. Dog is funny; someone had shared that exact one the other day, and i just laughed, well and truly out loud.

    As for the twitter stuff; If someone @'s me, I reply. Not that many do, mind you..
    If someone follows me; and they aren't a bot or someone who just adds thousands upon thousands of follows, i will check them out AND maybe follow them..
    The act appropriate thing; Well I do try; since a rather good friend told me to cut the crap. Not always easy to do mind you, but I try.

    1. I bet you have awesome friends. The stort that are never invasive and give you unwanted advice with regards to personal issues. And they probably write really great books about unsavoury subjects. Wish I was you. *winky smiley face here*

      Ok. Sorry. Got that out. Sounds like you're doing fine and dandy and as I said there's so actual rules. With social media its whatever you can live with really. Whatever works for you. Maybe we should all wonder if we'd do or say it to people's faces when we know then as little or as much as we do. Hmm. Who the hell knows...

    2. I do have some awesome friends; most of which live too far away now.