I’m no Sally Field, but…

I don’t know how many of you were even watching the Oscars back in 1984 when Sally Field, upon winning her second statuette, couldn’t help herself and blurted out “…you like me, right now you like me…”

It was a moment that either touched you or made you squirm, depending on your reading of 1) her sincerity or 2) her “uncoolness.” I mean, it’s not cool to draw attention to yourself, is it?

But that’s what we’re asked to do today as authors. Writers (with the exceptions of Norman Mailer and Gore Vidal) are usually shy, retiring types, content to hide behind the written word. (I know I am, anyway.) They want their writing to be discovered, not themselves. But these days we have to get out there and meet and greet people, introduce ourselves online, in bookstores, libraries, even at the local Costco or Walmart.

We can no longer hide behind our characters or make do with an interview here or there. We have to share our souls, as well as our faces, on our websites, blogs, on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, our Amazon Author Page, you name it. It seems as if ten new online sites spring up every week, trying to convince you that if you don’t register with them, you’ll be left behind in cyberspace.

And after going through the initiation into Google Friend Connect, may I just say that now I fully understand the sentiment Ms. Field tried to convey years ago. Thank you to all those who joined my site.

I tried to look up Google Friend Connect etiquette, wondering if I was supposed to respond individually to each of you whose faces now share that little box with mine. I couldn’t find anything about it. (However, I did come across a goldmine of a post regarding the etiquette of socializing on Twitter…Heard of socialoomph.com? More about that tomorrow.)

So, if I’ve messed up somehow by not separately contacting each of you, please let me know (email would be a lot less humiliating than a comment below) and I will. But, for now, thank you all. Everybody wants to have friends, to be liked. Sally Field understood that. And I do, too.

Originally posted 2010-05-18 14:57:28.

I’m Ready for Review (I Think)

Once you add Google Friend Connect to your website, you feel absolutely naked online. It’s as if you’re alone in a vast wilderness. Hello? Can anyone hear me?

I decided tonight that I would throw all caution to the wind and invite all 600+ Facebook friends to check out the new website, leave some comments, and…hopefully…keep me company in that bare area of white space under “Followers” in the side bar.

Of course, I realize that most of my acquaintances aren’t checking out Facebook right now. After all, it’s FHE night. So all you ACS alumni–now’s the time to show some support, okay? I’m hoping that by tomorrow morning I’ll get a few hits and a few Google Friends. (I guess I’d better send out a few emails as insurance.)

Anyway, I’m still working on getting my book trailer embedded on the home page, as well as a few other images. But please feel free to tell me what works and what doesn’t. The Bio’s too long, isn’t it? And I know I need to post a couple of sample chapters from The Reckoning and my newly finished manuscript, Laps. I have a ton of links that still need to be added, plus some poetry. But I’d welcome comments on the Baghdad photos in the meantime. Should I add photos of Greece or Lebanon?

This is still very much a work in progress, so put your two cents in now.

Originally posted 2010-05-17 20:52:43.