A Friday Thought to Chew On: The Message Is the Thing

A Friday Thought to Chew On: The Message Is the Thing

Earlier this week, I had a moment of surprise strike with regard to who I am.  No, not Chris Kuhn, the chick who lives in Florida and likes to scribble a lot, but as an identity out here – in Social-Media-Land. And it wasn’t the first time in recent weeks that I began to question how people perceived me out here. Why is that? Because I had a longtime follower confess that he didn’t know I wrote a romance book or that I was an author even.

Boom.

That sound was my jaw hitting the ground.

Didn’t know I wrote a romance book? But you follow me? Huh?

I must admit I was flummoxed. I thought I pretty much spewed THE MUSE UNLOCKED 24/7. Heck, ad nauseum sometimes, so much so that I almost feel it necessary to apologize for plugging the hell out of my book but I know that you, my friends, understand — it is what we authors must do. To keep afloat. But with all of my imagery on my Twitter page of the cover and characters and the regular postings that promote quotes and plot points from the book, I thought to myself, ‘hmm, maybe I’m doing a shitty job reminding people what I do for a living.’ Maybe I think that I’m getting my message out that I love to spin words and invite everyone to read mine in whatever format – books, short stories, poems or essays – but perhaps it’s not really clear where those words live.

He is part of my audience and if my message didn’t get to him, who else didn’t receive it?

It really made me think that perhaps I need to revisit exactly what message I am sending about who I am, what I do and why I am here. I have to think I’m not alone in this dilemma. Has anyone else experienced something similar? We can forget sometimes that we are the ones that actually hold the reins on the social media stagecoach. I’ve always been myself out here at the risk of that not being titillating enough. But maybe I’m not being clear about what it is I write. I say this because in the past month I’ve suddenly received an influx of religious writers, culinary folks and conservatives follow me. Other than enjoying the pleasure of eating food and occasionally cooking some, I don’t really fit into any of those silos, so I have no idea why this trio of new follower waves arrived on my shore. It does make me ponder: has my message gotten lost? Muddied? Confused?

Hmm. Maybe all three. I’m still assessing. But I think a lot of us run into this in our daily lives when we start to think about the people we spend time with or the interests we pursue. Sometimes we can meet up with someone and wonder when the heck did we decide that we had anything in common? Or why is it that I’m actually doing what it is I’m doing? Am I going through the motions or is this really how I should be using my time?

Our messages are no different. Sometimes they need to be listened to again. And again. Re-assessed, possibly even tweaked. Like those people we cannot quite understand how they got there, maybe our messages once fit into our lives better, too. They may no longer be relevant. Or maybe we just need a reminder about what that message is.

This week’s little incident has me asking myself… has my message changed? Or did I just forget what it is?

So… here I am.

Again.

Hello, my name is Chris Kuhn. It’s been five days since my last blog. Oh wait, that’s that other thing —-

Hello, my name is Chris Kuhn.

I’m a writer. Some romance, some humor, some observation, some inspiration, some pop culture.

I write words. I like words. I hope you do, too.

I especially hope you like mine. Thanks for reading. ~ ck

4 Comments

  1. Marcus Boz

    Hey Chris;
    Enjoyed your piece on reevaluating approaches in social media. It’s definitely an identity thing. Sometimes we need to regroup just so we don’t lose our focus and purpose. It is so easy to get lost and stuck in that maze of social media! It’s info overload!!
    The follower you speak of who didn’t know you had published novels, well, obviously have lost their way in the maze. I also think they weren’t ‘reading’ you. Anyways I think you used this incident for your own benefit- the lemonade out of lemons – thing! Keep on writing and blogging and I will read. Maybe send this follower a complimentary copy or a couple of chapters! It may get you some fans you didn’t have! Although I haven’t read your novel, it’s obvious to me that you and your talent are a gift to us!
    Peace, Boz

    • chriskuhn

      Thank you so much, Marcus, for the sweet words, and especially for the encouragement and support. You’re exactly right — sometimes we need to regroup and this incident truly was a much needed splash of water on my face. Heh. Thanks again! ~:-D chris

  2. It’s not that you’re not telling people who you are and what you do,it’s people not listening. Not really interested in anything but themselves…..believe me,i know…..Best of luck with trying to change that

    • chriskuhn

      Thanks for your support, hon. I’m just going to be more aware that the clearer my message, the less confusion there will be :)) ~ chris

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