Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Writer Community: Real or Fake?

When I'm online, I kind of put on a mask--a persona. <---Not a bad one, just one that I think is essential. I strike conversation, smile, exude happiness and positivity to other writers around me (hopefully not obnoxiously so) It's like playing a part, to an extent.

To survive in this business, making connections is crucial. We're all doing it, trying to friend one another, gain support.

But when does it get to be too much? Or where's the line between real and fake?

There are some out there that only look at you like a number. How many people have you run into that befriend you and then dump you the minute you download their book? *shakes head*

It hurts when this happens. Yeah, sure, all of my friendships aren't the BFF type, but I do try to show sincerity wherever I go.

The difference between the real and the fake (and I'd like to consider myself real) is that I do care. We're all in this business together. Or we should be. But I guess, just like the "real" world, there are people out there that only have one thing on their mind. Their own success. ***And yes, I get that some people don't have time to buddy up, but etiquette should be shown at all times... maybe I'll do a post on etiquette for writers on twitter or something...***

Most of my best friends are my online writer friends. Truth. I've got such a tight knit group that has been through a lot. And one thing I've learned (and felt myself) is that true or real friendship is when you find success through others. In my group, I am the odd one out--in the fact that I'm not agented or have a book deal yet. But you'd never know it by the way I'm treated. Real friends treat you as an equal, regardless of where your status is. I do hope to have my own success someday, but I do find joy at seeing my friends succeed. On the flip side, I also feel great sorrow when they're down.

This isn't meant to be a slam on the fake people out there--well, maybe it is (har har) But what I hope comes across here is that there ARE real people out there that care and will stick by you no matter what. Find those people and hold onto them, because it can make a difference in whether you survive in this business or not.

Where are you on the real to fake scale? (LOL) Have you come across both? Is there such a thing as "real" in this business? I'd love to know your thoughts on this topic.

Red. Head. Out. :D


  1. Your awesome twitter group (I'm assuming Jolene and Kelley are in there) are amazing! Totally real and so encouraging! Had to say it, cuz I agree with you :)

    I think a lot of times busy comes across as fake, but we gotta cut some slack with that. People are busy... especially when they get a book deal. But I totally get what you mean from this post.

    I would like to think I'm a real person. I try my hardest to make myself available for anything, offer support, and do happy dances when I see people succeed. :)

    1. Agreed. I downloaded a book just the other day from twitter (it was free) and RT the link and never got a thank you. I think that warrants at least a smiley face, LOL! ;)

  2. I feel the same way about this. These connections I've made mean the world to me, even though I've never met these people in person. On the real to fake scale, I'm the real deal :-)

  3. The fakes are pretty obvious, I think. It's too hard to be convincing for too long, so they either let the facade slip or they give up. I'm on the fringes of this society, I think, so I really don't see a LOT of the fake.

    I'm real, though. For what it's worth :)

  4. Love this!I get so many follows that when I follow back they drop me like a hot cake, which has resulted in me being more cautious in who I follow. And that's sad! I could be missing out on some wonderful friendships. I'm a stay at home mom that rarely gets out. Twitter has been a place I feel I can connect with people, even though it has taken me a while to get past my shyness and find my voice :) I wish every writer could read and learn from this post. Being a great author isn't just about the number of sales, most of it is how you treat your readers. d(^.^)b two thumbs up!!!

    1. Ohhhh... thanks so much for your thoughts, Amy. You are awesome. I think the majority of us all want the same thing... it's just too bad that well, the bad seems to stick out. Love being connected with good people. :D


    I've written so many posts along these lines, but I can't keep the snark out of them, so they've yet to be published, lol.

    I'm online to meet people who love books and love writing. That's IT. Does it help me market my book?
    Does it help me market friends' books?
    But that's NOT why I'm here.

    AND because of that simple thing, I've met some AWESOME, AWESOME, people.

  6. *gasp* You've been holding back on us, Jolene???

    Bring on the snark! LOL. We're ready for it.

  7. I think this is really interesting. When I first started "putting myself out there" I was pretty much playing a part. My persona, or mask, was pretty thick. I remember at one point, my husband was reading my tweets and was like "This isn't you. Why are you so ... perky?" He said it sounded like I had gone back to high school. (Not that he knew me back then, but still). I explained to him how there were different expectations online, yadda yadda. I needed to be entertaining, yadda yadda. Anyway, to make a long story short, it made me realize I was being a phony. So, I tried to change that.

    Now, I'm not saying I'm not optimistic in my online doings. I still have a different online "voice" than I probably do in real life. But, I think to some extent, we need to protect ourselves by not being entirely TOO transparent. Know what I mean? I mean, I'm not going to bleed my heart out on my blog and not expect some sort of backlash. (Especially with politics, religion, etc.) But yet again, people appreciate honesty.

    So, if you couldn't tell, I'm a little conflicted about my online persona at times :) I still try to be real though. I still give my honest opinions and I try to be nice to everyone. If anything, I hold back at times. Everything I DO say is real, I'm just silent on some matters.

    Sometimes I worry that people will still think bad things about me (especially when I don't tweet them back or follow their every blog post or something), but I'm doing what I can. I'm not as big into social media as some people, and for me, I feel like I am going WAY out there and using up tons of my time when I am on it, but, people will just have to accept the fact that I only blog about once a century, or I'm only on Twitter about once a day. For me, that's real, and that's what they get.

    Okay, I've now posted an extremely long and rambling, confusing comment. I'll go hide in a corner now ...

    1. Haha... Oh Tiana, I. LOVE. IT. Seriously love it.

      I'm the same way--where I come across way more perky/crazy online. I'm not like that in "real" life. *winks* I mean, the number of exclamation marks I use alone... *shudders*

      It's a tricky balance, but I get it. My goal for this year is balance in all areas of my life--I'm doing better, not there yet, but better.

      And yes, you should blog more (LOL) I love your posts!

  8. Nice one, Morgan! I like to think of myself as real (just better behaved) when I'm online. I love the writing community too much to be fake. :)

    P.S. You have no idea how much I wanted to comment, "GREAT POST! BUY MY BOOK SOMEDAY PLZ!"

    ...See, this is why I have to force myself to behave. *grins*

    1. LOL, Carrie! And Pffft! <---heh, no reason to behave! We know you're the real deal! :)

  9. Replies
    1. BETTER be real, Cort! If not, the work I've read from you was written by a really talented ghost writer! *winks* ;)

  10. I think I'm more who I'd like to be when I'm online, because I'm not a quick thinker... not witty... but online, I have time to think about what I'm going to say, so I feel like I sound smarter/cooler/etc... maybe it's just my imagination though.

    1. Interesting! And true---I think most of us feel that way ;)

  11. I'd like to think I'm real in this biz. I try to be good to others and help them along the way. You've been the greatest help to me. Listening to my sorrows with writing and even my outside of author life.
    One thing that bugs me on Twitter is when I follow someone or follow them back and they instantly DM me with something like "Look at my blog" or "Read my book." That's when I get super bugged. If I want to look at your blog or read your book then I will. Don't smash it in my face. You know what I mean. That is when I feel you become fake--when you only want people to do those above mentioned things. If you carry on thoughtful or even bantering conversations then you are real.
    I guess it stems down to what your intention is.
    Ok, off soap box, babe!

  12. Awww - that was one of the reasons I left Twitter. I was always in the wrong time zone to chat with you guys - and all I was left with most times were the 'buy my book' crowd.

    I understand people are enthusiastic - but it's better to make connections than plug your product. Also, it's boring lol

    Morgan I hear you about staying real and being genuinely happy for other people's successes, and just being honestly interested in others as people :)

  13. Hi Morgan,

    Hope all is well, and just wanted to let you know I left you an award over at my blog:)

    Stop by to pick it up when you get the chance :)

    Cheers and Aloha!

  14. Yeah... sucks sometimes. Peeps like you and me wear our hearts on our sleeves and some others wear a patch that looks like a heart but flies away as soon as the breeze picks up.

    Love ya, here for ya, know you're there to for me.

    J. Dog. Out.

  15. Great post. Being real is the only way to go. If you're fake because you want to catch someone's attention, it's going to show. They'll see right through you - but the reality is professionalism is the only way to go. And acting fake isn't professional. Be real and polite to haven't developed a rapport with. Love the fact you are so real with me and was there for me when I needed you. Love.

  16. Dear Red, I love the way you write! Thanks for following me too! I'll be back to check on you! (And no worries about me being fake... I don't have a book for you to download! :) )




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