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February 13, 2013

Promoting your Book on Facebook and Twitter is a Total Waste of Time

Promoting your Book on Facebook and Twitter is a Total Waste of Time | The Passive Voice | Writers, Writing, Self-Publishing, Disruptive Innovation and the Universe
After being told for several years by every guru in the business (most of them styled as “social media experts”) that as a writer I must focus my attention on self-promotion through social media, I now consider myself to have become a social media expert myself — at least when it comes to matters writerly. And I am telling you that those other social-media experts (and the publishers that parrot them) are full of crap. When it comes to book promotion, your time is far better spent on other kinds of marketing activities, or even in writing your next novel, than it is being anywhere on social media. . . . . And here’s the bottom line, my fellow writers: nobody goes on Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn (or Tumblr or Reddit or even an Amazon forum) to read about your book or mine. They are especially uninterested in our novels. They might possibly be interested in a non-fiction book if they think that what it contains is going to help them somehow (change a tire or make a million dollars or find inner peace), but the creative stuff . . . ? Forget it. . . . . Rarely if ever since Gutenberg has anyone ever wanted to read a book because the author said he or she should read it. (Most of us have also never been interested in reading a book just because the publisher told us to read it.) Social media do not alter that reality at all. What readers want to read are books that other people – independent people, whom we respect – tell us we’ll enjoy, not what the books’ authors insist we will enjoy;

February 07, 2013

Florida school district would rather ban ALL student clubs than allow one kid to form a Gay-Straight Alliance

Gay straight ACLU Lake: Lake School Board wants rules that would keep gay student club from starting at middle school campus - Orlando Sentinel
The ACLU, citing the federal Equal Access Act, says school districts cannot pick and choose which clubs to allow based on what they think students should or should not discuss. If a school allows any student group to meet that doesn't have a mission directly related to school academics, then it cannot deny other students groups the same access, the ACLU says. In Florida, the law applies to middle and high school students. School Board members Bill Mathias, Debbie Stivender and Chairwoman Kyleen Fischer spoke in favor of a rule that would ban extra-curricular clubs in secondary schools while fellow board members Tod Howard and Rosanne Brandeburg favored banning extra-curricular clubs only in middle schools. Fischer said the district should focus on education and that "social engineering" is not the job of the School Board. "It is not our job to socially mentor students, but to educate them," she said. Howard said he was worried about the clubs that would be lost under stricter rules. "I am very concerned that one club would push out the remainder of the clubs that are doing good things," he said.