Friday, May 02, 2014

Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ - Oh My, Oh My, Oh My!!




By Jann Audiss w/as Jann Ryan

I’m technology challenged. When it comes to the social media world I’m plain scared. Just the thought of posting something incorrectly has stopped me dipping my toe into the water for years. My goal is to break through the fear. When OCC announced its Online Class schedule I was thrilled. There it was-- April’s class--Social Media for the Confused and Terrified presented by Elena Dillon. No more excuses by golly. I signed up.

Week 1 - The class started with Facebook, and for four days straight I had my desktop and laptop computers running side by side. Reading lessons and asking questions on one, doing class assignments on the other. I was learning about personal pages and author pages, friending and liking. Even though I’ve had a personal FB page for several years, I’ve never really interacted on it. I had started an author page (Jann Ryan), but hadn’t made it public to the world because I’m not a published author. Well, I hit the published button and it’s now live. To support my fellow classmates (which are a terrific group), I’m friending and liking and trying to comment on posts.

By the fourth day, I was on Facebook overload. I needed a bit of a break, so I thought I would start going through a couple of my file boxes filled with years of writing paraphernalia (handouts, conference stuff, articles and pages of stories.) It was suggested by a good friend to scan what I wanted to keep and toss the rest. I DIDN’T COME OUT OF THE ROOM FOR 4 DAYS! I was scanning and tossing from morning till way into the night. My determination to master FB was transferred to cleaning out paper. I couldn’t stop myself. From the file boxes, I moved to the book shelves, then back to the file boxes. I was obsessed.

Week 2 - Monday, I came up for air only to be confronted with the next week’s class--TWITTER.  I hadn’t conquered Facebook, now I was facing the Twitter monster with its hashtags, retweets and Tweet chats. Thanks to the wonderful instruction and guidance from my teacher Elena, I marched into the Twitter world. I installed Tweetdeck and selected people to follow. I was fortunate to see meet up Beth Yarnall, author of the Azalea March Mysteries, The Misadventures of Maggie Mae and the Pleasure at Home Series, who gave me some hands-on instructions. Check out her website http://www.bethyarnall.com/ .  I’m still feeling awkward with Twitter, but I know I’ll be Twittering up a storm soon.

Week 3 - My Waterloo is Google+. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been receiving great instructions, but I realize I need hands on instructions when walking into the unknown. I get the overall idea, but just can’t seem to figure it all out. I need to spend more time on my lessons and work with it more, but life is getting in the way this week.  It’s similar to FB, but now I Hangout with a Circle of Friends (actually, I’m not hanging anywhere yet).

I have one more week to go and one more social media item to learn. Heaven help me.

All that being said, I’m happy I ventured into this new world. I have some wonderful classmates and a great teacher, Young Adult Romantic Suspense author Elena Dillon. Stop by her website http://elenadillon.com/.  

Go forth and conquer!