Monday, November 7, 2011

Social Ineptness

Yesterday my friend Kim Peter Kovac (henceforth known as KPK) and I tried to set up a Facebook account for this blog. Well, actually that’s not really the truth. KPK did the work while I drank his excellent coffee and played with one of his three humongous Maine Coon Cats. I occasionally asked inane questions to make it look as if I knew what was going on but I think KPK saw through this early in the game.

We managed to set up something, but when I came home and tried to access the new page on my own computer (KPK used his Mac to set up the account), it was zilch. The page came up but it was empty and no amount of mouse work or cursoring helped. Facebook insisted on sending me back to my personal account which I established years ago in a moment of blind madness, and the stuff I thought we had put on an Epiphanette page was gone. Poof, into the ether…

Here’s the deal—Call me a Luddite, but I really don’t like Facebook. Or Twitter, Tumblr, Myspace, Zoosk®, Linkedin, Yammer, in short, any of the programs designed to let people know where I am and what I’m doing. I never liked their predecessors either. I can see their potential uses and I have no issue with Twitterrers and their ilk, but it ain’t for me. I don’t like the lack of privacy, or that photos, information, facts and fiction about me could spring up on anyone else’s computer at the asking.  Yes, I know I can keep people out, I can unfriend them (which sounds positively hostile and sneaky) and I can even put my Facebook page on hold but that’s not really satisfactory.

Earlier this morning in a fit of righteous anger over the system not responding to my very simple requests (the picture I tried to upload, for example, was too small!), I deleted my account entirely. Man, that felt good!  I will now proceed to rebuild something that is all about my writing (which is the interesting part) and not at all about me (which is the boring part).  I think it’s possible to do this but I’m not entirely sure.

There’s probably a Facebook for Dummies book out there. The fact is, it’s not that simple to do stuff unless you have the time to spend learning the system. What, for example, is the difference between ‘liking’ something, and being a friend? And if there is a difference, why? How can I block Mary Beth—whom, I may like—from telling me in detail that she walked her dog this morning and plans to have a root canal this afternoon? And do I need to know that CunĂ©gonde is in a relationship with RenĂ©? No. Really. I don’t.

So here goes. With luck, I will be able to set up a page called Epiphanette which will feature this blog and others, and serve a launching pad to advertise Wasted Miracles, a novel I recently put on Kindle, Apple and Nook. I have no illusions. The probability of failure is high, particularly for a technologically challenged person like me, but it’s worth a shot, nothing ventured nothing gained, etcetera…

Oh, and I forgot to mention that one of my short stories, Les Peaux Rouges, just got published in the Chrysalis Reader, a pretty good annual literary magazine. I’m not sure if it is online yet, but you can check the website, Or you can buy the magazine at better bookstores…

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