emaginings: Social Media, the Brain and Creativity

September 16, 2013 by in category The Romance Journey by Linda Mclaughlin tagged as , , , , , with 0 and 0
Home > Columns > The Romance Journey by Linda Mclaughlin > emaginings: Social Media, the Brain and Creativity

Yesterday’s meeting was informative and lots of fun. I missed Melissa Cutler’s morning workshop on “Making Grammar \work for your Voice” to attend PAW, but heard good things about it afterwards. 

Afternoon speaker Catherine Bybee joined us in PAW for a spirited discussion of publishing and social media. One thing she said struck me as problematic, for me. She said we should share about our lives at Facebook as a way to engage readers. But my life is so boring. Debra Holland told me later that was my choice, and she’s right. I prefer drama in my books, not my house, so living a quiet life is just fine with me. But it doesn’t make for fun anecdotes on Facebook & Twitter, like the ones I see about people’s kids and pets. So it’s my challenge to find a way to be interesting on social media. 
I’ll get the chance soon.I’ve joined a group of ten indie authors to publish a boxed set of our works and we’re going to do a launch party at Facebook. So I can report on that next month. 
In the meantime, I have signed up for Susan and Harry Squires online workshop on “Talking Back to Your Brain”. Now, I have zero time for a class, but this sounds like a good opportunity to get my head straight about some things.Plus I know the class will be great because I’ve taken classes from Susan and Harry before. But keeping up will be another challenge. I do hope it will help me to focus better. As you can see from this post, I’m feeling just a little scattered.
Speaking of the brain, I read a fascinating article recently at the Buffer blog on Why We’re More Creative When We’re Tired and 9 Other Surprising Facts About How Our Brains Work by Belle Beth Cooper. Several of these facts are useful to writers, including the fact that no one can really multitask. Our brains aren’t doing two things at once. Rather, the brain is jumping from one task to another at the fastest possible speed. Not the most efficient way to work. 
I had begun to figure that out for myself, but the internet makes multitasking so appealing. I can open multiple tabs in my browser and jump from one to the other. I start with my email, then, oh, here’s an interesting blog post, and there’s something good to tweet, so I open Twitter, or more likely Buffer, and pretty soon I’ve got seven tabs open to different websites. Yikes. I do close the internet before I start writing. I may be dumb but I’m not that dumb. I do make plenty of mistakes, though.
Which brings up another surprising fact. People who make mistakes are better liked. Maybe that’s why everyone is so fascinated when an icon falls. Hah, she wasn’t so perfect, after all.
Naps help us remember better and meditation can rewire the brain for less anxiety and more creativity. I plan to take more naps, as best I can since I’m a night owl who has enough trouble sleeping at night, much less during the day. And meditation needs to be squeezed in more frequently. If only there were a way to add more time to the day. Oh, wait, there’s something in there about a way to trick our brains into thinking time is going more slowly. That’s a little too much for me to process, but this is a very interesting article.
For those of you not familiar with Buffer, it’s an online and smart phone/table app that helps you to schedule social media postings throughout the day. I can access it from my computer or the iPad. It’s like TweetDeck and HootSuite in that regard, but Buffer doesn’t try to manage you account. Just helps you buffer, i.e., schedule postings throughout the day. It’s very simple to use and the Twitter analytics are helpful. The basic level is free, but someday I may “Go Awesome” and upgrade to the $10 a month plan. They also have an awesome blog with lots of informative and helpful articles.
(Note: No one at Buffer is paying me for this endorsement. I’m just seriously impressed by this app. FWIW, I have not tried TweetDeck or HootSuite, so cannot make a fair comparison.)
Do you use a program to manage your social media platforms? What do you recommend?
Linda
My social media contacts:
Twitter: @LyndiLamont https://twitter.com/LyndiLamont
Author Bio
Author Bio
Linda McLaughlin grew up with a love of history fostered by her paternal grandmother and an incurable case of wanderlust inherited from her father. She has traveled extensively within the United States and has visited Mexico, Canada, & Australia. A lifelong dream came true with a trip to England where she was able to combine sightseeing with research for her novels. A native of Pittsburgh, she now lives in Southern California. She loves transporting her readers into the past where her characters learn that, in the journey of life, love is the sweetest reward. She also writes steamy romance under the name Lyndi Lamont.
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Linda McLaughlin grew up with a love of history fostered by her paternal grandmother and an incurable case of wanderlust inherited from her father. She has traveled extensively within the United States and has visited Mexico, Canada, & Australia. A lifelong dream came true with a trip to England where she was able to combine sightseeing with research for her novels. A native of Pittsburgh, she now lives in Southern California. She loves transporting her readers into the past where her characters learn that, in the journey of life, love is the sweetest reward. She also writes steamy romance under the name Lyndi Lamont.

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