Hiking the Facebook Trails

Written By: Jackie Weger - Sep• 07•16

Wild life in the Facebook jungle


Jackie Weger

Jackie Weger. Do subscribe to my newsletter, sent about once a month. It is always full of free and discounted books. Thank you for visiting today.

Good Morning. I’m Jackie Weger, founder of eNovel Authors at Work. I write romance novels. The heroines in my books are good girls in turmoil. The heroes  lean toward the alpha–good men all, because good men make good husbands and better fathers.  My books are not going to shake the world by its roots. I write to entertain. Sometimes I get it done, sometimes I don’t. Goes with the territory. When I don’t get the job done right, I keep trying…I don’t blame Amazon if my book doesn’t sell, or  rail at Bookbub because a book did not snag a coveted promotion slot, or sound off because readers don’t post reviews.  Which brings me to topic: Facebook and Amazon Community discussion forums. No promotion allowed.

An author will say, “My book isn’t selling” and then will add: “The cover is professionally made, the book description is stupendous and it has a review rank of Five stars.”  So I looked at the thing: Well boo-ya, honey. The cover has a picture of a contorted naked woman, but you can’t tell what it is in thumbnail cover on Amazon. The upper font of the title is lost in color. Unreadable. One of the reviews has a warning: Adult content: drugs, violence, rape, strong language. The book description is a synopsis. No mention of  the mission/crises/villain.  Main character is introduced in the very last sentence. Oh, all of those five stars are gushing like Spindletop. The title is scary. Think Aztecs. There is absolutely no way to suggest anything to that author, because the author’s comments say he/she/it has already nailed it. Closed mind.

Later in a another discussion thread I posted that a professional cover that does not capture the story arc won’t work. I mention I have changed

Flying is Parnel Stillman's highroad. Heroics is not his thing. But Rebecca Hollis insists he must do the impossible to save the orphans.

Flying is Parnel Stillman’s highroad. Heroics is not his thing. Rebecca Hollis insists he must do the impossible to save the orphans. Fifth cover~by Steven Novak. He nailed it.

my titles to make them more appealing. Plus, I changed the cover on one book five times–all of which were professionally made and we finally nailed it. Took two and half years. Also, that I often revise book descriptions. None of my descriptions are stupendous. I also mention my units are professionally edited and formatted.

Count The Roses Final MEDIUM

I love, love. love this cover. A Melody Simmons design. Plus, the book is an Amazon Exclusive. Can’t get any better than that. Editions in both print and ebook.

Oh, my goodness…Next thing out of the blue, along comes an author who accuses me of being a snob, and arrogant, and educated and having more advantages than he. And more money than he to pay for author services. And younger! My youth gives me an advantage. He can’t spend two years to get a book right. It was about a 500 word rant. He despises people like me. He is not going have his books edited because editors destroy an author’s voice. Huh? I leaned back from my keyboard and decided “not doing this anymore.” I left the group. I reviewed other discussion groups I’m a member of…and left a half-dozen of them too.

Here is why: We cannot help people who won’t help themselves to success–not just in our indie author world, but I do think that is universal. Frankly, I’m weary of the whining and complaining and spoon feeding to others what I’ve learned the hard way. Most don’t want to hear it. So. Saving my breath and aggravation.  One of my colleagues is so annoyed at this sort of behavior, she shut down all of her social media. Spends her time now writing and selling her books. I’m close.

But! Before I checked out, I told the author “senior citizenship” is no excuse to produce a less than stellar product.”  Child, I’m so senior I’m older than God and just a smidgen younger than death.

Jungle plumbing site. Best place ever to store wildlife rants. It's real. I used it for two years. Talk about wildlife! Home to snakes, scorpions, tarantulas and geckos.

Jungle plumbing site. Best place ever to store wildlife rants. It’s real. I used it for two years. Talk about wildlife! Home to snakes, scorpions, tarantulas and geckos.

Next, the ranting author gets mad because I use a headshot of a makeover my granddaughters did on me. Looks nice. Shows me about five years younger than I am because they Scotched-taped my wrinkles to the back of my neck. (Actually 10 years younger–I lied. I do write Fiction). Folks, I am so not going to float a picture all over the Web of me with hairs on my chinny-chin-chin.

Fact One: It is author choice how you roll with your career. I respect that choice. Fact Two: There are many paths to success. Not a single one is smooth as silk. Fact Three: A book is an inanimate object until it is in the hands of a reader. Fact Four: If you want your book to do right by you, you must first do right by your book.

If by some wonderful chance you know of a better way to handle the wild life situations such as the above, tell me! I’m all ears.  Comments welcome. Be nice. If  you can’t be nice, be articulate. @JackieWeger 2016.  I love this banner. Showing off.


Every title on this banner is READ FREE with Kindle Unlimited or Amazon Prime. So go for it! Meme designed by Faith Mondigo, a wizard when it comes to these things.


You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.


  1. Jackie, I agree with every word.
    More power to you. 🙂

  2. Susan Tarr says:

    Wahoo! You tell them, Jackie! I totally agree with you (even though a weeny part of me gets into a whine now and again).

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Susan! We all get into a whiny mood now and again. We aren’t happy with the results of a task we set ourselves. I get it. But Golly, it is not the done thing to spew vitriol at an author who may have managed a task more successfully. By-the-by, I looked inside at the ranting author’s books and discovered dozens of grammatical and punctuation errors. POV changes in the same paragraph. No space markers between scenes–all of which leave the reader confused. Holy smokes. If his books ever sell, he is gonna be in a world of hurt when readers start posting reviews. A wake up call–if he listens.

  3. EM Kaplan says:

    Scotch-taped to the back of your neck? Haha. 🙂

    Can’t help those who won’t help themselves.

  4. Donna Fasano says:

    Once again, Jackie, you have your facts straight. As always, you are honest and straight-forward. How can anyone argue with that?

  5. Julie Frayn says:

    Wow, what a ridiculous rant that author spewed on you. I agree, most author forums are just folks fishing for compliments. Or people lurking without actually taking part or contributing. I am lucky to be in 3 that are filled with folks who care about their work and are prepared to do what’s necessary to be taken seriously, and want to learn from others, and help others. I’ve left all other pages. There just aren’t enough hours in the day. Editor’s destroy an author’s voice – please….

  6. Mary Smith says:

    An excellent post, as always, Jackie. And you are so right about people who don’t want to hear. They have a string of reasons for their books not selling, none of which include anything they have done or not done to promote them.
    I’m going to bite the bullet soon and work on a cover change for No More Mulberries.
    And can you send your granddaughters over here to show me how to do that thing with Scotch tape, please?
    Mary Smith

  7. P.C. Zick says:

    Thank you for articulating what I often think. Whenever I feel the whines coming on, I go to my computer and start pounding out the next story. After all, it’s all about the book. Thanks, Jackie.

  8. TJ Shortt says:

    Attacking other authors for any reason isn’t cool. Ranting and whining on line – again not cool. Energy much better spent working on your books.

  9. Jackie Weger says:

    TJ Shortt: You are so right about author rants not being cool. I do think a lot of this behavior get shoved in a closet and the author who is subjected to abuse slinks away, lips zipped for fear of retaliation. I’m just not going to put up with it. If that sounds arrogant or advantaged, I’m going with it. I raised five kids and when my sister-in-law died having her sixth, I found myself with eleven kids under my roof to raise, six of whom were teenagers. Lemme tell you–that experience makes for a strong stomach, a steel backbone and a fearless attitude. If those characteristics ever fail me, I have my snake gun for backup. Woot.

  10. Jackie, I could not agree with you more. Close-mindedness defeats just about every worthwhile pursuit in life I can think of, and it certainly slams the door on learning anything. Interesting, isn’t it, how the person with the least to say is often the loudest? You go, girl!

    • Jackie Weger says:

      I love it when you comment on my blogs, Lorrie…so I can name drop and say I personally know a three time winner on Jeopardy! I know that is off-topic, but it brings me to this: Know who you’re talking and listening to in those Facebook groups. Before I comment, I ALWAYS search Amazon or Google for the author or the book. As often as not, I will look inside the author’s book, plus check book rank and glance at reviews. Whole story right there.

  11. MaryD says:

    How to handle the wild life situations? IGNORE THEM. It raises your blood pressure even if you are youngster Some people just do not want to listen no matter how much sense you make. Such is life.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      I wholeheartedly agree with MaryDee. But in a room in which 30 or forty authors are listening, I did have the urge to correct fallacies. Besides that, I got a blog out of it. Boo-ya. Moreover the site owner sells $249 promo packages to authors. He says on his webpage that he is careful of the authors and books he promotes. Now, we know different. Above all, the Facebook page administrator/monitor needed to be on the ball and delete that comment before I discovered it or it got any traction.

  12. Every word you said is true, Jackie. I wouldn’t go as far as removing myself from social media for the sake of a few idiots of the sort, though. Why miss the benefits of interaction with fans and extra sales when I can easily block these idiots? I never get into arguments. What’s the point? As you wisely said, you can’t help anyone who don’t want to help themselves. If they think they’re doing everything right, you’ll only anger them if you tell them otherwise and contradiction is just a waste of time. And time, is the most precious commodity in today’s hectic world.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Hi, Frossie. How are you doing? You make some good points…but you know what… times have changed since many Facebook discussion groups went live. Administrators tire and pass the baton to another with less focus or a different agenda. Or leaders do not keep up with events. I left another two Facebook groups that have less and less activity. The group may show 5K or 6K members, but only the same half dozen members are active day in and day out. Networking is at a standstill. Reviewing the groups I’m a member of is like cleaning out my closets. Clothes that I love and are still useful, I keep. The others, I don’t. Another may find those same groups helpful. Go for it. Author choice. I’m choosing.

  13. Totally agree with every word. I have no patience for people who can’t own their own success.

  14. I’ve seen the same thing. My protonovel is still in its first-draft stage, but I’m stalking successful writers across the internet, making notes about how they do production and publicity. To me, it’s the only sensible way to go: learning by your own experiences is good – learning by other people’s is better!

    It astonishes me that so many people in the same position seem to either do no research at all, or only ask “Why isn’t my book selling?” of people whom they know will answer, “It’s not your fault, you’re a lovely person, your book is brilliant, your time will come – just keep on truckin’!” What those people want is not advice: it is validation.

    Fine. They’ve got their way. I’ve got mine. I may still fail (and everyone else is free to laugh when I do) – but I will fail knowing I did everything I could to succeed; no stone was left unturned, no successful indie author was left unstalked.

    Yes, it’s annoying to watch other people screwing up and then whining about it, but that’s their choice. I don’t even have to respect other people’s choices if I think they’re idiots – all I have to do is acknowledge that it is their choice and freedom to choose means freedom to screw up.

    When you come across that kind of person, it’s very tempting to fire both barrels at them and then stalk off in a cloud of righteous anger and blood splatters. And it’s really, really satisfying (did it once to my boss; one of the sweetest memories of my life. In writing, not with an actual shotgun. Really).

    However, before you do that, it’s generally a good idea to make sure that they will end up worse off than you. No point taking your bat and ball home if actually, you wanted to stay out and play…

    So yes, ditch the internet fora where it’s all whining and complaining. Or just steer clear of those discussions where you just know it’s all going to go south – even if you have something interesting to contribute. Possibly, especially if you have something interesting to contribute, because often people don’t want to hear anything that doesn’t agree with their worldview, and they will come after you with pitchforks and flaming torches. If nobody is going to listen, then don’t waste your breath – you’ll need it for running.

    But ditching social media altogether? Sounds a bit extreme. Surely there are some decent people somewhere whom you might like to chat to? Statistically speaking, there are so many people on social media that there must be some reasonable ones lurking.

    And as my husband has pointed out to me, the minute you allow the whiners to stop you doing something you really want to do, they win. Which they don’t deserve to do.

    Nil illegitimi carborundum. 🙂

    • Jackie Weger says:

      You make some very good points, Theophania. Nice to meet you and so happy you’ve added to the discussion. I have not forsaken all social media. There are forums and some blogs I continue to visit and share or comment when it seems reasonable. And when time permits.

  15. Learning the hard way is the only way to learn, you don’t make the same mistake twice. For every one of those individuals who rant, rave and complain, there are many more who respect, learn from and appreciate your advice and experience.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Hi, Dougie: It’s always nice to see you here. eNovel’s goal is to share what we learn and boy! Most of us learn it the hard way. However, it is always Author Choice. Some may benefit by what we learn and share, others not. We do see a huge amount of misinformation fed to indie authors. However, there comes a time when we have to cut our losses. One toxic member in a Facebook group can ruin it for all. I move on. And so do many savvy indie authors. Thanks again for stopping in and adding to the discussion.

  16. Rosie Dean says:

    “Be nice. If you can’t be nice, be articulate.”
    Love that!

    On a more serious note, the life of an indie author can really scare the you-know-what out of a benign and creative writer. It can also look like a piece of cake to the more arrogant amongst us.

    Like in all walks of life, some people will understand you and some people won’t but they’ll sure as hell have an opinion.

    Just smile and soldier on. Know your own truth.

    Thanks again!

  17. Lois Lewandowski says:

    I think many people use forums as a crutch, remaining close-minded as you point out, and unfortunately having their lack of success supported by these “friends.” A real friend will tell you your cover sucks, or that you need another edit. Mine did.
    Thanks for your thoughts.

Leave a Reply