Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Rachel Thompson – In Social Media, Do Our Vulnerabilities Make Us Stronger?

In Social Media, Do Our Vulnerabilities Make Us Stronger?

by Rachel Thompson

I read an article recently that discussed how our vulnerabilities create connections to others on social media.

Rachel Thompson 2

Via free Google Images

If you’ve read either of my books, A Walk In The Snark or Mancode: Exposed, and my most recent release, Broken Pieces, you’ll know that I’m a proponent of laying myself bare. In Broken Pieces (not humor this time), I discuss the real-life experiences that form many of us, particularly women: sex, love, grief, abuse, and desire.

Writing this book seemed a natural progression for me, so I followed that muse. I gave myself permission. Many of my stories contain universal truths for so many of us, delving into experiences I had buried or was afraid to reveal for fear of repercussion. It’s the most nervous I’ve ever felt about releasing a book.

But we’re discussing social media, not books.

In a social media setting, is revealing our most personal stories exploitive? Is sharing our hidden truths something that has no business in a business world? Is it possible to have a public and private personas separate and still be real?

Yes, absolutely. But what it comes down to, for me, is a question of the B word: branding.

My author account, RachelintheOC, is me, vodka and all. I’ve made a point of revealing personal stories because I’m a non-fiction writer. And because my books are about real-life, so is my social media presence. I share my personal opinions, editorial, and experiences.

On that account.

However, I’m also BadRedheadMedia, the chick who helps you with understanding things like branding, social media, and author platform. I discuss those topics and more on that account, across all of those particular channels (blog posts, Twitter, Facebook, G+, etc). What you won’t find are the intensely personal stories that show my, well, vulnerability.

So that begs the question: is there a way for businesses to show strength and vulnerability at the same time?

I believe so, yes. By setting the tone of your account (whether social media or blog), you control the information that others’ see about you, whether it’s well thought out or a brain dump. We generally write about what we know, or ask others to share their opinions.

And yet, when we see people’s responses to our work, whether in social media, blog comments, or reviews, that’s when you have to realize that you have initiated some type of reaction in people, whether positive or negative.

Sharing relevant, universal truths in either setting is, in my opinion (and this is my blog so I can say this), a critical component to our success. Everyone expresses some sort of opinion in their writing, as do the people who read it. Debate and discourse are at the heart of intention.

Ultimately, we are who we write, particularly on social. We’re naturally drawn to reading and writing about our inherent interests. We write with both conscious and subconscious leanings. We learn from each other. Social is the ultimate word of mouth, right?

You know me as the snarky redhead author. That’s my branding. Yet, I’ve recently and purposely changed the tone on my personal blog, to reflect the more serious stories from life, whether it’s via my own situations or the incredible guest bloggers who share their own real-life experiences.

I coach these writers that putting out there what has formed them shows their vulnerability, makes them real, moves us. Embracing our vulnerabilities and mistakes in a public forum is what makes us human, real, and ultimately, authentic. And yes, many times these stories are intensely personal and difficult for them to write – and for us to read.

Vulnerability is how we connect to others, in real life or online. Each of us is different, yet we’re all still very much the same. The key is allowing our real selves to show.


Samples to Savor: Book Club Picks, presented by Her Books:

Discover your book club’s next page-turner and spark fascinating conversations with your friends in this free sampling from eight bestselling authors. You’ll find rich prose, evocative plots, compelling characters and surprising twists from:

Finding Emma by Steena Holmes
Composing Myself by Elena Aitken
Spare Change by Bette Lee Crosby
The Scandalous Ward by Karla Darcy
The Tree of Everlasting Knowledge by Christine Nolfi
The Promise of Provence by Patricia Sands
Broken Pieces by Rachel Thompson
Depraved Heart by Kathleen Valentine

About the Author(s):
Bestselling authors Steena Holmes, Elena Aitken, Rachel Thompson, Patricia Sands, Christine Nolfi, Kathleen Valentine, Bette Lee Crosby and Karla Darcy provide readers worldwide with contemporary fiction and nonfiction releases ranging from historical romance to literary.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre –  Women’s Fiction

Rating – PG

Connect with the authors on Faceboook



  1. "Oh no, I said too much. I haven't said enough.." R.E.M. - Loosing my Religion

    T'sa question of balance, innit?

    Orrrrrr - Is it just a question of Presentation? "Go as deep and dark as you want, but let's not creep out the innocent or the damaged, shall we?" - Unknown


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