Social media and the traveling salesman

Did I happen to mention I went to a wine region?

We may be writers, but sometimes we’re like cheesy salesmen; traveling ones at that. We sell dreams and some of those glossy fantasies may even come true.

Feeling like a real estate agent at a home open I grease myself up as I use social media as my selling tool.  The only problem is everyone’s yelling and no-one’s listening, or buying for that matter; particularly so with Twitter. I compete with traveler’s blogging from the tops of mountains and PRs offering authentic villas in Cyprus. My trip to the local wine region doesn’t seem quite so interesting anymore, so I yell a little louder.

I don’t mind the ‘intimacy’ of Facebook though as I broadcast how I had my own ‘Lost in Translation” experience in Tokyo. No-one will ever guess the six day press trip I took actually meant I was in transit for two of those days. And in my sleep and caffeine deprived state I was herded from location to location while trying to take notes, photographs, be affable, and not look like a refugee while doing it.

Once I’ve returned home with fond memories, my story takes on a life of its own. Nostalgia gets the better of me and before I know it I’m posting photos and snippets of my journey with all the wonder of Marco Polo on his spice trail. When my story’s published I become a marketing guru and referring to myself in third person, I’m plastered all over the web and social media sites. I bask in my five minutes of glory; a tiny bit of fame without the fortune. I won’t be showing any homes in my BMW any time soon, which is fine as the world is my true abode.

If I’m a fraud, then I’m in good company. Whenever I’m feeling exposed I retreat to the conservative refrains of LinkedIn, because even introverts need to feed themselves.

– Carmen Jenner


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