As is usually the case, my bad day was followed by a better day. Honestly, I don’t know if this is the case for most people with bi-polar disorder, though to be perfectly honest I have not all that much interest in categorizing and classifying what is wrong with me. (I just want to learn to live with it and overcome it.) My huzband, on the other hand was an ICU and ER nurse for many years and is never comfortable until he can nail down the correct diagnosis. It frustrates him greatly when I say that I don’t much care if I am bi-polar 1 or bi-polar 2 or cyclothymic. I’ve had 47 years of living with this disorder, even though I only recently learned what it is properly called. Knowing something’s correct name doesn’t always give you more power over it. And not knowing something’s name hardly makes you powerless to fight it.
I am most pleased that I continue to have a lot of fun with my friends online. For only a few eaves (Empire Avenue’s virtual currency) I’ve gotten a whole bunch of folks to participate in the daily #definethis game on Twitter and have also been able to attract readers and comments to my blog. I am learning to simply let go of anger and frustration– to celebrate the folks who do their best to do what I ask in each mission and simply not worry about those who take the eaves and run. (Those who have flashing animated avatars and don’t follow instructions, I quietly block; but really, as they say ‘it’s all good’.) The point is I’m spending my social currency on having more fun with my friends. It seems to me that is kind of really the whole point of social media.
I am also pleased that my own little household has survived another month without really running out of anything we need and now we are into the shortest month and I encouraged Ron to go ahead and order the Kindle he’s been wanting for some time now. We got a flat tire coming home from Winco the other day and I’m afraid I’m going to have to buy a new tire with the money that I had been intending to buy a cheap android tablet. I suppose there is always next month. I am going to get my spit together and go to the doctor next week. I’m out of seroquel but have plenty of everything else. Will have to go to the pharmacy after I take care of the tire. Busy, busy busy at the beginning of the month.
That the lower case ’n’ and the lower case ‘h’ can look almost the same, to a not quite awake proof-reader’s not fully open eyes can be a curse or a blessing. The thing is, it was intended as a joke. The fact that I mis-spelled Holly Jahangiri‘s name in the tweet I got 20 folks on an Empire Avenue mission to tweet, in the opinion of some just made it funnier. I set out to see how many of the Empire Avenue folks who took my 1,000 eaves would send out this tweet for me:
@HollyJanangiri I DO believe in #prunebutt. (@libdrone made me say it!)
Those who know Holly may recognize that Prunebutt is a character on her blog, sort of in the way I am trying to make Mr. Everything (and still to come Ms. Efficiency) characters on this blog. Folks like my friend Liz (get that Hello World post down so I can link to your blog, Liz!) who know what they are doing on Twitter quickly realized that with her name mis-spelled @HollyJanangiri is not a real Twitter handle. For some folks, like my buddy Hank, the fact of the typo (which I publicly admitted as soon as Liz pointed it out to me) made the joke even funnier.
As with most everything I do, there really is a lesson here for folks who are trying to promote their B (blog, business, bullshit, buns, whatever). And the lesson is of course, humor sells. I set up this mission so that in order to fulfill it folks had to actually copy and paste what I wrote; the click through went to My twitter profile where some of the folks who clicked it followed me. I gave away 1,000 eaves to 26 users and fully 19 of them posted that exact tweet. A twentieth user modified the tweet to use Holly’s actual name and handle. And one of the first 19 posted a follow up tweet with the name and handle corrected. Given that it required more action that just clicking, that I got a completion rate of almost 77% seems fantastic to me. That folks will probably Still be laughing over this little episode after this post is published is a bonus.
So if you are trying to promote something (such as yourself) in the world of social media, try to always remember you could do a lot worse than going for a laugh.
I continue to have a lot of fun with my friends, which to a larger degree than for most people really is my primary goal online. Yes, I write books and publish books and do consulting with #indie writers who need help with the “blogging/social networking” thing. But everything that I do is really based on relationships and most of what I’m doing so far is just building relationships.
And the other day I had a mostly lovely chat with my friend Gaye Crispin (who by the way is one of the most lovely and charming people I know) about the very similar and confusing words loath and loathe. Click on each of the words to see the definitions. As homonyms go these two are kind of, well, killer. Our fascinating discovery of these two very similar words was brought about by the daily #definethis contest on Twitter. I’ve long been a huge fan of #definethis which challenges the Twitterverse to use Merriam Webster’s word of the day in a sentence. Just tweet your sentence with hashtag #definethis and you’re in the game. I’ve been playing for some time now and for awhile we had a nice little crew of players but they seemed to disperse over the holidays and somehow never came back.
But yesterday I used an Empire Avenue mission to try to rouse up a few more players, and was so pleased that Gaye not only played, but actually pointed out to me that the word of the day, loath, was not actually the word I had used but instead it’s identically pronounced cousin, which actually does not mean the same thing. For a word nerd like me it was a moment of pure bliss. I think I will continue bribing with eaves a few more folks to play #definethis with me on Twitter. And if eaves aren’t your main motivator, feel free to follow @definethis to receive one tweet every day with the new word a link to the definition.