Becoming a published author means that you enter the public arena knowingly and with intent. When I worked in publishing, the author was fêted at a book launch party, chatted with a few radio hosts and participated in book signings across the country. While this still happens to a lucky few, the vast majority of working writers jockey for valuable real estate in cyberspace: trying to ensure that one’s book gains a healthy number of Amazon pre-orders and generates a buzz on Facebook far in advance of its publication date.
Like me, most writers are solitary souls who’d rather spend hours in dusty archives or labour away on a difficult paragraph in one’s study rather than nurture one’s Instagram followers or try and boost the number of Facebook friends. I only joined social media two months ago and it’s been a bit like going from being a librarian to a stripper. Nothing is considered off-limits. It’s easy to be beguiled by this new anonymous world of friends for the taking and harder to focus on what matters- the words and the writing of books. And yet, natural introvert that I am, I’ve made new friends and fascinating connections with enthusiastic fans throughout the world who now know about Louise Arner Boyd- and that was my goal all along.