Three things happened in the past weeks.
One involved film making, the others involved the challenges of social media. After much badgering from my younger work colleagues I finally joined Instagram. The odd thing is, I’m enjoying it more than I thought.
My high school teacher friend groans about how we have several social platforms that do exactly the same thing. I don’t agree. I already knew the difference between a Facebook and a Twitter audience, but I couldn’t see much variation between sharing photos on FB and Insta. As I’m a visual person I now know finding creative artists and photographers on Instagram is the trick.
I’ve already unfollowed a few that treat this photographic platform for selfies, or for sharing, well, Facebook-style posts.
Instead, I’m exploring the imagery of those who are sharing the offbeat, or a wider world that’s bigger than themselves. Why would I want my Twitter, Instagram and Facebook feeds to all look the same?
Last Tuesday I was part of a Facebook promotion day with my colleagues at NineStar Press.
It was for the release of a new anthology, Once Upon a Rainbow, and, although I’m not in it, I welcomed the chance to go live for an hour as did the authors before and after me. I’d done this once before, sharing quizzes and games with whomever turned up online. This time I had Facebook Live on my side.
I’ll be honest. I only prepared for my part in the forty-five minutes leading up to my slot in the schedule. I practised some readings and quickly found the old graphics I used that last time. And I learnt that my wrap around phone case is perfect for hanging my mobile over the laptop screen. I can still type on my keyboard while using the decent camera on my smartphone to telecast with.
The same team of authors is thinking about a scheduled author live event once a month, or quarterly. This could catch on. As I found out recently, a Facebook Live video is four times more likely to show up in a person’s news feed after the broadcast than an uploaded video. It’s worth considering for any author who needs more exposure.
Finally, I shot and edited my next book trailer.
I used three topless men and a femme fatale to promote my novel, Social Media Central. Oddly, this book won’t be out until March 2018, but it feels good to know I’m well ahead in my marketing.
Anyone whose followed my blog knows that this was an effort. I had every cast member locked in since August except for my redheaded female. I didn’t find her until October, but at the eleventh hour she had to work on our shoot day. I had to rethink the storyboard and add an extra location just for her. We shot her special appearance the following day.
I’m really excited with the way the trailer turned out but know I have to keep it under wraps until next year. It’s not easy. I’m dying to share even though there is no final product shot (as the cover won’t be designed for a while). As my partner always says to me – I have to learn patience.
But tomorrow I’m looking forward to a whole day of getting lost in my current work in progress – ironic considering that in the end, all of the above is to help get my name out as a writer.