Story Excerpts

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Faceook Page: To Delete or Keep?

Not everyone who likes my Facebook page will see my updates.

Late last year, Facebook implemented changes to condense and customize a person's News Feed content--understandable, considering that people "like" more than a few brands, have lots of friends, and will only scroll through so much feed.

But small business took a crippling hit to visibility. And we're talking visibility among those who have already "liked" a page, and requested updated information from it.

"If you can’t reach even those who have liked your page and repeatedly engaged with your content, what good is a brand Facebook presence?" -- Ignite Social Media

Enter the ranking algorithm game.

I can earn more exposure in my followers' News Feeds, with posts that elicit likes, comments, sharing, etc. And while I could put a little more effort into questions and images that would encourage interaction, statistics are showing me I'd spend my time better writing books.

According to a recent Forbes article, even Facebook has proclaimed "organic reach" dead, leaving paid advertising as the only means to real growth. And sure, if you pay, you'll get the exposure, but then you'll have to pay again to interact with your followers.

"Instead of building a database of users that you can contact at will, you are essentially paying Facebook to build a list of people that you can then advertise to."  --Forbes

Last week, Edie Melson of  The Write Conversation blogged her reasons for shutting down her Facebook author page. It caught my attention right away, and since then, I've done more research, leaning ever more toward a decision to delete my Facebook page. I'd still keep my personal Facebook account, and I've considered bringing more of my writing world into it.

My finger still hovers over the delete button.

I've been mixing networking contacts with my personal Facebook, but its not something I'm completely comfortable with. My Facebook page seems worth keeping, for the sake of having a brand/presence on Facebook, even if I don't spend a lot of time and effort there.

Let's say a miracle happens, and I attract a literary agent's attention. Would the agent believe a Facebook page an important base and ask me to re-create it? The thought of starting all over with a Facebook page--even a year from now--not appealing.

What do you think? Should I delete it, or keep it?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Gift of Singleness

A writer friend wrote an article suggesting that the Church has placed an unfair emphasis on homemaking--some girls grow up planning for a husband and family and aren't given that opportunity, or life throws them a bomb, destroying their happily-ever-after with Mr. Right Wrong. They shoulder a growing sense of failure and stagger on in life, grappling at Plan B.

My heart went out to this writer, because I've met many women entrenched in this sense of failure at life.

I was single once.

And like most single young ladies, I was obsessed with finding "the one", the man God had made especially for me. I was convinced that my life would be complete, a real slice of heaven, once I'd found and married him.

Haven't read this, but gosh, it's a cute title and cover!

Don't get me wrong, my husband and little boy do enrich my life and bring me a lot of joy--I thank God for them everyday--but they also devour the "me" time I enjoyed so much as a single woman. All that time I had for church ministry, writing, outreaches--poof.

I hear ya, you're saying that you'd happily trade in your free time for a husband and family, in fact, GLADLY.

But what if...what if God has a special calling upon your life, a ministry that you could not manage alongside a family? I know my own writing career is riding turtle-back as I tackle days with a preschooler. But my family must come first. God, then husband and little darling boy, then my stories. That is the way it must be, and I believe the Lord takes note of the times I succeed in right priorities.

Did you know the Bible talks about whether a woman should marry or not? And this is where we get that saying, "Singleness is a gift." 1 Corinthians 7. Paul says that his answers to the question of marriage are his opinions, but opinions backed by trustworthy wisdom.

"I want you to be free from the concerns of this life. An unmarried man can spend his time doing the Lord's work and thinking how to please him. But a married man has to think about his earthly responsibilities and how to please his wife. His interests are divided. In the same way, a woman who is no longer married or has never been married can be devoted to the Lord and holy in body and spirit. But a married woman has to think about her earthly responsibilities and how to please her husband." 1 Corinthians 7: 32-34 NLT