The downside of Facebook & other much nicer things!

HUNTERAt last I’ve found time to write a blog posting. The days do rush by don’t they? I can’t believe that I’m thinking about Christmas already.

I’ve been quiet for one reason and that is I’ve been engrossed in writing a new novel. I’m really excited to talk about it, so more on that later.

I’ve also discovered a new hobby. But first I want to talk about social networking and how I feel about it at the moment. I’ve been on Facebook for a long time and always enjoyed the interaction I got on there, but recently I’ve become very disillusioned with it. There have been several occasions where I have been extremely upset by what I’ve seen on there. A few weeks ago I scrolled through my newsfeed just before going to bed and a horrific photo of animals being abused was thrust into my face. I was distressed beyond words and couldn’t sleep that night for thinking about it. I couldn’t even face going back to report it because it meant I would have to see it again. I began to be afraid to scroll through my newsfeed for what I might see. So, since then I have barely been on FB. I post a few things and that’s it really. So, if you are on FB and I haven’t been commenting or wishing people a happy birthday, then that’s why. I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds these kind of photos distressing. I’ve tried to understand why people post them. I’m sure it is to raise awareness. But I am aware. I know these things go on. I know what charities to support. I know bad things happen. I’m aware children get abused as well as animals. I just don’t need graphic photos to hammer it home. So, for me, FB is not somewhere I want to be that much. If you want to follow me and I hope you do then you can find me on Instagram under Lynda Renham. It is a far nicer place I find. I’m also on Twitter but not so much. But I’m also here at the blog. So feel free to join me. Do let me know your feelings about distressing pictures on FB. I’d like to hear your feelings.

SOMETHING NICER

Now, onto something else, something much nicer. In between writing I also discovered the fabulous art of crochet and I am addicted. So much so, that in the next few weeks I hope to set up my crochet and knitting blog. It will be dedicated to just crochet and all the hand crafts that are such fun to do. It will focus on my crochet journey. So, keep an eye out. I’m in love with this hobby. It’s so calming and relaxing and makes you feel so calm. If you’re stressed in any way then I would recommend it. I taught myself by watching You Tube videos and I’ll be recommending many of those in my new crochet blog. I started last December and have so far made two blankets, a shawl, and lots of squares which I plan to join together. I also made a cushion cover and am currently working on another blanket for a friend. I’ve found a renewed interest in knitting and have made a teddy bear and am working on a shawl. It’s fabulous. I have bought numerous books and will share those on my new blog too. If you’re into any craft then please let me know. I’ll be sharing my new blog posts on FB, Twitter and Instagram. I hope you’ll join me when I do. There are CAL’s  (crochet alongs) which I hope to take part in too and I’m looking forward to going to some yarn festivals too. As you can see I am truly hooked (so to speak) I hope I have fired some of you into looking into this wonderful, calming craft. It’s not hard once you get the hang of it.

I’ve left the best for last. Coming on the 12th September is my new novel ‘Hunters Moon’

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It’s a psychological thriller and I so hope you enjoy it. It has been a long time in the writing. I’ve enjoyed it but I’ve also decided that the next book will be much lighter and funnier than the previous two. Thank you so much to all those that bought ‘Remember Me’ It did exceptionally well, especially in the USA. So well in fact that it is coming out as an audio book next month. I will post links when I have them. Also ‘Perfect Weddings’ is coming out as an audio book too and should be available for Christmas, I hope.

Here’s a little about the new novel ‘Hunters Moon’

‘Hunters Moon, set in the little English village of Penlyn, promises to be the dream home for Flora and Adam McIntosh. Adam’s career in politics has taken a turn for the better and the only thing left to complete the couple’s happiness is a baby. Flora believes the new home will help her overcome a recent miscarriage but she soon realises the house is not all it seems. What are the villagers of Penlyn hiding and does Hunters Moon hold a dark secret? Flora soon finds herself entrapped in a web of deceit with no one to turn to. Her dream home becomes her nightmare as Flora fears for her life.’

I’m very excited and can’t wait to share this with you. I hope you enjoy it.

Well that’s it until next time. I hope I hear from you.

Much love

Lynda

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Facebook- The Dark Side

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It’s not the first time I have considered coming off Facebook because I feel my self-esteem waning and my confidence at an all-time low. Some months ago I came off for a short time. I set my settings so my author page would stay active and removed myself from Facebook. The truth is, I felt much better. There was no one to compare myself with. I wasn’t looking at photographs and considering my self-image. I wasn’t reading about other people’s lives and how much better they seemed to be faring. I didn’t read about other authors who it seemed were doing infinitely better than me. I spent several weeks feeling, that as a person, I was okay. That my work was good and that I was, to all intents and purposes, successful, at least as successful as I could hope to be. I’ve never been a terribly confident person but I find my confidence drops to an all-time low after being on Facebook. If I had self-doubts, these would be reinforced when reading how well others seem to be doing, reaffirming my belief that I was a failure because I wasn’t reaching their standards. It took me a long time to realise that what I was seeing was very much smoke and mirrors and that most likely the people who seemed to be spectacular successes, were in fact doing no better than me. However, they maybe had a better way of making it seem that they were. And those who seemed to be living amazing lives are, in fact, living a life no better than mine. I would often come away feeling like the world’s worst failure. I don’t recall feeling this way for a long time. It then occurred to me that Facebook made me feel very much like the mousy, plain Jane that I had always dreaded being. It was like being out with a bunch of women who were more successful and prettier than me.

According to psychotherapist  Sherrie Campbell, social media gives us a false sense of belonging. This means we give our cyberspace connections more weight than they deserve. We ultimately compare ourselves to others. But only as others portray themselves, not necessarily as they really are. Everyone’s life looks perfect. But in reality it is just a quick snapshot of someone’s life. If we take everything we read literally then it most certainly seems like we are lacking. When I begin feeling negative about myself after looking at my Facebook home page I know it is time for a break. Hence my use has been less over the past few months. I’m sure I’m not alone.

I enjoy my interaction with friends and many of my friends on Facebook are my friends. Like everyone, I have friends on Facebook that I have never met and I also have friends that I have made through Facebook and they have become close friends. I’ve had some unpleasant connections too. But most of the time my interactions on Facebook have been pleasurable.  Am I alone in torturing myself? Do others look at their home page and come away feeling dejected? I’d love to know.

Meanwhile, I’m rationing myself to limited time on social networking and putting my self-esteem first. I’m learning not to take things literally and to realise that things aren’t always what they seem. I’m seeing a snapshot of someone’s life. What is really happening behind closed doors I’m sure I’m not privy to. I know I don’t share my personal hell. The truth is we only want people to know the extreme things that are happening to us. One for praise and the other for sympathy and I’m sure I’m as guilty as the next person of this. But if you see me missing for a while, you’ll know why.

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