When I took a break from the blog three weeks ago, I mentioned it was because 2017 was trying to outdo the horribleness of 2016. Man, I had no idea how bad things would get.
Personally, I’m doing better. The stuff that kept me off the blog is settled, and I’m back. I even got some good news: my Fraggles Threadcake won 4th place in the 2D division of this year’s Threadcakes contest! I’m super excited because I’ve been entering for five years now, and it’s the first time I’ve placed (although I’ve been named a finalist twice) and it’s probably the last year the contest will run. Go here to check out all the jaw-dropping entries (seriously, it’s hard to believe some of them are even cake.)
But aside from that, 2017 has been filled with hate and injustice and fear, and in a lot of ways, the whole world has changed.
As a result, the way I use social media has changed.
I’ll still be here on the blog, talking about my writing journey, with the occasional personal essay about some of the topics contained in the books I’m working on. If the current political atmosphere affects my writing, well, then, it’ll probably at least get a mention, like it is today.
My Facebook will still mostly deal with baking and caking, although it may expand to other crafting as I try and get my family to eat a bit healthier.
Where you’ll see the most change is Twitter. In fact, if you’re on Twitter (whether you follow me or not) you’ve probably already noticed the change. Gone are the light-hearted posts about my kids’ latest antics (I never even got to tweet about how they collectively answer to the name “Weasleys” now) or posts about new children’s books (I’m trying to make some exceptions for books by authors from marginalized demographics or those with themes of inclusion). Those posts don’t feel like they belong anymore. Instead, now most of my tweets (let’s be real, retweets) are political in nature.
At first I tried to hold off. I told myself, it wasn’t my country, wasn’t my president, wasn’t my battle. But as the injustices added up, I found myself sitting glued to my Twitter feed much as I had sat glued to the news reports on 9/11, watching the terror unfold, feeling powerless, and wondering how long until it reached my country, too.
But the more I read, the more I realized:
I cannot be silent.
I will not silent.
I may not be as loud as others, but if I can amplify thoughts even a bit, then I’m doing my part. I’m trying to keep my posts away from insults and name-calling, and more on historical comparisons and calls to action. And I’m doing my best to check sources before retweeting.
And sure, it may lose me readers or followers, but to be honest, if you can’t handle me speaking out against hate, then you probably wouldn’t like any of my fiction anyway.
So there you have it. A new game plan for a new world. I’ll continue to adapt as the world adapts, and most of all, I’ll continue to write, because more than ever we need stories.