Do you really care about your readers? Do you care about the writers and/or readers who attend your conferences, workshops, and author readings? Let’s find out.
Everyone has an opinion. That’s good. Life would be miserably boring if we all thought alike. There would be no differences. It’s why politics is such a hot-bed of chaos.
Sadly, over the past twelve years, elections have become more and more volatile. Couple that hatred with the ease of spouting off on social media and everyone is lambasting everyone.
Three Ways You’re Disrespecting Your Reader:
1. When you’re on social media do you share every meme degrading the politician you hate? Do you spout off that anyone voting for the person you think sucks is an idiot? If so, you are disrespectful.
For the most part we can separate a writer’s creativeness from their political beliefs. And I do believe most people on social media should just skim over the stuff they don’t agree with. To a point. When the writer takes to social media every day with diatribes of who not to vote for and why their person is best it gets exhausting. If we get inundated with your hate-filled opinions, we stop following. We also stop reading your work. We stop recommending your books. Yes, a thoughtful post once in awhile is okay. Long disgruntled comments everyday, aren’t. Calling people who don’t vote the same way as you idiots, brainwashed, uneducated, heartless, etc…, is slamming a whole section of your readers.
Fix: Check your social media accounts. Are you posting more about politics than about stuff your readers really want to see? If so, scale it back, delete the anger-filled posts you’ve shared. Rein in your hatred of those who don’t vote the same as you.
2. When you are speaking at a conference or workshop or seminar or book reading do you throw out political jabs, snide comments, and crude jokes? If so, you are disrespectful.
Unless you have been asked to speak on politics with a hard lean on your beloved party, you are out of line bringing up politics while at the podium. Most conferences, workshops, and seminars cost money. When we shell out money to hear you speak about character development, we don’t want to hear your politics. We don’t all agree with you. When you disrespect by weaving in a few political beliefs we kind of hate you. We could have taken the course on finding voice with the author who respects us. Instead we paid money for you to slam our beliefs.
Fix: STOP! Don’t go into politics. Not one snide breath. Nada. Zip. Zilch. People saved and shelled out good money for something that has nothing to do with your political beliefs. Even if your event is free, stay away from politics. We cleared our schedule (possibly missing out on something else) and found a way to get to your event to support your novel. Not your political beliefs.
3. Do you weave your political beliefs into your novel? If so, you’re being disrespectful.
Again, we spend money on your books. We buy novels to get lost in the story, not preached to about how rotten we are if we are of the opposing view. The majority of novels can be written without going into particular party. When you produce a one-sided opinion, you are preaching. It never, ever comes off as part of the character. It always reeks of the author stepping in and slapping us across the face. Then laughing all the way to the bank because we just spent hard-earned money on a novel that considers our political side to be “bad guys.”
Fix: STOP! Your readers spent money on your book. Unless you have some warning label on the front that says: Slamming this party inside, you’ve just wasted a reader’s time, money, and enjoyment.
REMEMBER: Your readers and peers come from all walks of life. We all have opinions. Just because we don’t all agree on the same path to point A doesn’t mean that you’re better than us or we’re better than you.