In an average day, trolling the Internet while working social media to promote my book, I run across a lot of news. I mean a lot of news. So much to worry about. So many bad things happening in the world. There's so little time in a day.
I am writing a second novel. I am promoting my first novel, The Reverse Commute, by tweeting, writing on my blog and here on HuffPost. I have a Pinterest account and a Facebook page. I'm Linkedin. But what I need to do is write, just write. I might need an administrative assistant but I can't afford one.
As my brain gets bombarded each day while I work on my computer, I have decided to weed through the chaff and separate what I need to worry about from what I can forget about. Here's a list of some of the things I see on an average day and how I feel about them:
Forget About: "Dead Pigs Found in Chinese River." I remember almost 10 years ago reading about deformed amphibians, in particular three legged frogs, that had been found in New Hampshire. At the time this freaked me out but now, 10 years later, the planet is still here and humans have not started developing a third leg, so I am not sure what to think about the dead pigs in Huangpu River but I'm not going to worry about them.
Worry About: Fracking. I came across Yoko Ono's video "Don't Frack My Mother" the other day. Honestly, fracking disturbs me. I am worried about this.
Forget About: "Jay Leno is Leaving the Tonight Show." "What Will Jay Do?" "What Is Jay's Next Move?" Numerous headlines on this piece of "news" spanning several days. Seriously? He's a millionaire several times over. I don't care what he does next and I am certainly not worried about it. A friend of mine went to high school with Jay and I hear he is a very nice guy. He still contacts his old high school buddies when their parents pass away or it's their birthday. So I'm not really worried about him. He's rich and he's nice. Besides, he has that garage he can hang out in.
Worry About: "There Is a Very High Chance North Korea Will Launch a Missile Test." We all need to be worried about this. The last thing we need is another war.
Forget About: "U.S. Races to Make Vaccine Against New Bird Flu." I didn't get the bird flu the last time we as a nation had anxiety over this. So I am going with the theory I am immune to bird flu. But, I do have these annoying ugly birds in my backyard who look like a cross between a duck and a turkey and like to crap on my deck. Oh gosh, do I have to worry about this?
Worry About: The gun control bill in the Senate. As I am writing this blog, the Senate has reached a compromise to expand background checks. This is good news but I am worried they won't go further and they need to, so keep on keeping on. Please, for all our sakes.
Worry About: Bill Clinton is on Twitter. Stephen Colbert launched him. He opened his account four days ago and already had 128,615 followers. Yes, I am worried about this.
Why you ask? Because I too am on Twitter promoting my self-published book. I've been on Twitter for four months not four days and I do not have nearly as many followers. (If you'd like to actually see how many followers I have, check me out @sheilablanchett and while you're there you might as well follow me.)
I enjoy all this tweeting and blogging and pinning and friending but it's hard promoting yourself when you don't have influential connections. I do have great friends and have met great people who love reading good books. I have attended numerous book clubs promoting my book and have gotten encouraging, positive feedback from readers who enjoyed The Reverse Commute. I have good reviews on Amazon. But none of my peeps have any cachet.
So I have even tried some crazy marketing ideas. My friend and I recently attempted to crash a Delia Ephron event in Boynton Beach. We wanted Delia to have a copy of the book. I'm not really sure what we thought this would do for our mission to sell more books but what the heck? We both love Delia and her sister Nora. (Their parents were screenwriters. They had cachet. Just saying.) We are big fans. And it made us feel like we were doing something productive.
I wrote a book loosely based on my life and marriage, much like Delia's sister, Nora, who wrote the novel Heartburn based on her life and marriage. Delia recently wrote a book, The Lion Is In, about three women on a road trip who meet up with a lion on a rural highway in North Carolina. I recently quit my job, sold my house and moved to Florida, taking a road trip with another good friend of mine. We ran out of gas in the rural town of Wade, North Carolina but we didn't meet a lion. We did buy lottery tickets, after coasting to the gas pump in the nick of time, but neither one of us won. I haven't heard from Delia yet but I knew she was on a book tour at the time and I envisioned her reading The Reverse Commute in an airport somewhere in the snowy midwest where her flight might be delayed.
It was very aggravating to see Bristol Palin awhile back on the evening news at a Barnes & Noble book signing for her memoir. Memoir? She's how old? How she does she get a big time book deal for her story of her teen pregnancy and sell it as a memoir at the ripe old age of 21? When I was 21 I was a college senior attending keggers and avoiding writing a resume. Hardly the stuff of memoirs. What was this story doing on the evening news? News you can't use. It belongs on the "Forget About" list. But I am worried about it.
I need the Colbert bump.