It was in October 2017 when I ran across a new author who wrote about a part of his life that most people would never share with friends, let alone strangers. He held nothing back except his real identity. It was very personal and without question, he was going to be judged harshly. I understand and respect his decision to remain anonymous.
Zane Michaelson wrote about some of the most challenging times in his life. Depression and the feeling of discontent which lead him down a road that had the potential to destroy everything and everyone around him. Choices were made and hence his story begins.
The series is called I Know What You’re Doing. Before releasing the book as a whole, three novellas were released under the titles, in order, She Loves to Watch Me Play, Our Dirty Little Secrets, and Till Death Us Do Part. After reading She Loves to Watch Me Play, I searched out this new author on Facebook. I find all of my book recommendations on Facebook. It’s why my blog was a Facebook only blog for 7 months. I “Liked” his page and began to “stalk” him. Zane Michaelson’s Facebook author page.
This may seem weird if you are not an avid Facebook author stalker. In the Facebook world “stalking,” an author is a good thing. It means I follow them on all social media. Stay up to date with new releases. Follow the author to other pages and groups for “takeovers”. Generally, be a super-fan and show my support. It allows me, as a reader, to converse with and get to know an author. An author is a real person, not just words in a book. It adds to the reading experience, especially with an author like Zane. He responds to his reader’s comments and is genuine. Even though he keeps his real identity a secret, his personality shines through. I know about his sweet tooth and his crush and obsession with Kylie Minogue. Like I said, you get to know more about the person behind the words.
**Following an author and getting to have this ‘personal’ experience does not mean you have the right to harass or act inappropriately with an author. If you wouldn’t do it or say it to someone face to face, then don’t do it on Facebook. OK, done preaching…. just be smart. Don’t ruin the experience for others who know how to act appropriately.
Back on the subject of Zane Michaelson and why I am grateful he stuck with me. Yes, I love the personal story he shared with us, but this isn’t why I chose to write about him now.
Back in December 2017, I had just started my Facebook blog and group. I have always expected instant gratification and success. I didn’t feel like things were moving fast enough and I made a casual post about giving up.
Zane messaged me and offered to ‘takeover’ my group. This means he signs into my Facebook group and spends an hour talking with and posting with readers. I love ‘takeovers’. When Zane messaged me I was stunned. Here I am ready to shut things down and this new author offers his time to help make my blog better.
I was shaking I was so excited. His personal assistant, Gloria, walked me through, step by step, and corrected my errors. I am grateful for her too. They make a great team.
We picked a date and time and waited. I continued to play on my blog but the number of members did not climb very much. If I remember correctly, I had about 35 before Zane’s takeover and 76 on takeover day.
What nobody knows about that day, until now, is that I got ready 2 hours before the takeover. I set up my room with a cushy chair, pillows, and blankets. I added a folding table, covered it with a table-cloth, set up snacks, and drink and counted down the minutes until the takeover was to begin. I know it was silly but I did it. It was a big event for me.
I messaged Zane about 15 minutes before takeover time and prayed he did not forget. He answered right away and stayed on the private message with me while chatting easily with the readers. His encouragement was everything I needed to convince myself I could really do this. It was so much fun and the adrenaline was pumping through my body. I’m not sure I was actually breathing the entire time.
At the conclusion of the takeover, I burst into tears. I had been searching for a new path after leaving a job I loved. I needed something besides just being a stay at home mom. I especially needed to find a group of people I could relate to and connect with. People I had something in common with. Romance books.
It is hard to find friends who read or at least admit to reading romance. Especially if it’s really dirty books. I have since found them thanks to my blog. I would not have continued with my blog if Zane had not messaged me. I was done and ready to look for something else to fill a void.
Since deciding to continue my blog I have gone headfirst into the pool of romance books. I attended my first author signing in April 2018 and went to the humongous RT Convention in May 2018.
I will write more about those in the upcoming months. Now I have moved on to include a web-based blog to my Facebook blog and why? Because Zane Michaelson stuck with me and gave me the chance to see my potential. I don’t think he knew what a difference he made that day. He is just a great guy.
Thanks, Zane, for sticking with me and supporting The Redhead. You never know who you may be helping or inspiring daily. On that day in December, you helped me.
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