Saturday, January 9, 2016

Helping Me Helping You

This is not an ABBA song. It's just a title for a blog post. Below is the ABBA song, which is not at all what I want to convey at this very moment, but hey, who knows. Someone out there in the vast Interwebs  might be looking for this very ABBA song and those amazing outfits and they will come across this strange blog and read this post.


So, what the Heck is this all about you ask?  Let me tell you.

First of all, I'm a very lazy blogger. (I am not a lazy person. I am currently in grad school, I work and I'm a mom, wife , mother and I volunteer in various capacities.) Anyway, I used to be gung-ho about posting on this blog because I was in the process of building a platform. What's a platform you ask? It is something nonfiction writers need in order to be taken seriously by the publishing world. In other words, gatekeepers wonder if anyone would buy a self-help book from a carpenter that no one has ever heard of? The answer is no. Platform is important.

Even though my platform was more like a step stool, I kept on because I loved hearing people's stories about death and grief. Not because I'm a Morticia Adams wannabe, but because I'm human and other people's stories about being human made me feel less alone in this ridiculously crazy world. And I think it also helped a few others out too. It feels pretty good to facilitate healing, no matter how small or insignificant.

In November, my first book came out. This was a big deal. Not because I got a six-figure advance or an interview with Terry Gross on NPR. It was a big deal because I put myself and my creative work out into the world. OUT INTO THE WORLD where it could be JUDGED. And if you know me, I'm not exactly a social butterfly. I'm the person at a social event that is over in a corner petting the cat or the dog. If there isn't an animal around, I'm by the chips or in the bathroom wiping the sweat from my armpits and thinking about what I'm going to say if someone actually tries to engage in a conversation.Or more realistically, I'm at home convincing myself that social gatherings are no fun and why would I want to attend one in the first place?

Those days are gone. If you've read Death Becomes Us, you know that I've gotten over my fear of people. You still won't find me at a party very often, but I can hold my own in a one-on-one conversation without the assistance of a notebook or a tape recorder.



Which brings me to you, dear stranger who loves ABBA. I need you to do me a huge favor. I need for you to...

1. Buy my book on Amazon. You can get the e-book for less than a latte or you can make the paperback commitment and possess a tangible slice of my life. I pinky promise that you'll laugh, cry and want to hug someone.

2. Read the book. Read it while listening to ABBA. (There's a rumor that the story links up perfectly to one of their albums.) Reading is the cheapest way to take a journey without the cost of a passport, a plane ticket or a hotel room.

3. Write a review. I didn't say it had to be a glowing or lengthy review. Heck, you could just give it a star rating. Easy peasy! If you want to write one, be honest and don't fear brevity. Why do I need reviews? I'm after algorithms. The more traffic on my Amazon page, the better. I can't tell you what an algorithm is, but I think I need some. You can read this post by Kristen Lamb if you want to have a better understanding.

So, if you've read this blog in the past and it has entertained you, or given you a little bit of help, then please help me.

This was really hard for me to write. I don't like to ask for help, but as Babs once sang...


And don't forget to comment.  Just say "Hey" or "You Suck, Don't tell me what to do Pamela Skjolsvik" or whatever.  I've got rhino skin.

In my next post, I am going to reveal the spoiler from the latest Star Wars.  I hope to enrage the internet. Because, well, bad publicity is better than crickets.

9 comments:

  1. DON'T YOU TELL ME WHAT TO DO, Pamela Skjolsvik - cuz I will do it twice before you have time to blink!

    Seriously - way to do it, dudette. They are hard things to ask, and we gotta get really, really good at asking. But don't worry - if you can read a page of your thesis to strangers at Starbucks, this will be cake by comparison!

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    1. Thanks, Tex. I think trying on ill-fitting clothes at Ann Taylor and then asking random strangers what they thought of my ensemble was worse.

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  2. Wish I could help you out again. But I guess one review is enough, and I don't think I should probably do a review in my granddaughter's name! If anyone sees this and wonders if they should buy the book and then review it - I say YES! It is a very interesting read!!!

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    1. Thank you, Barbara. And no, you should not write a review in your granddaughter's name. That would be lying because she isn't old enough to write and the book isn't age appropriate:) I appreciate you for being one of the first to read and write.

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  3. Great book Pamela. I'm out here living it every day. I tried writing about it but felt inadequate. You've really put it in a relatable, friendly text.

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    1. Why would you feel inadequate? Go forth and increase the algorithms, Stew!

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  5. Thank you for the lovely ornament! Now stop telling me what to do.

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