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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment #374

Social Media Fascination

I’m far from being a Facebook junkie, but I do find it fascinating. Where else would millions of strangers tell intimate details about their lives to millions of other strangers? It really is a very weird testimony about human beings and our needs. Why do we have such a need to be heard? Why is it so important to people that our opinions be validated? I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with it. What I am saying, though, is people seem to lose all inhibitions on social media, and say things they would never say in person, with no apparent realization that there will be ramifications for what they say, and I find that fascinating.

My God! Talk about airing your dirty laundry. I remember, growing up, my parents were very tight-lipped about their lives. They would never tell anyone how much their jobs paid. They would never share their political opinions. They would never, and I mean never, tell intimate, personal details about their lives.

Fast-forward sixty years and people seem to have lost all concerns about their privacy. Why is that? What happened during those sixty years to turn people into open books?

I have some suspicions why it happens today, but no definitive answers. Maybe you do. If so, feel free to share in the comment below.

Now, though, we have some mail to sort through, so let’s get to it.

The Mail Room

The Mail Room

Is Hp Worth It?

From Denise: “I guess I have a question for then. Do you think it is of any benefit for someone to join now? If it was so much better for HP in the "old days" is it even worth it anymore? I know I for one appreciate the community and the encouragement even if I don't make money like I used to. Plus, I have things to say that I can't really say otherwise. HP does give me a platform for that. Is it worth it? Shall I take my writing elsewhere? Am I just spitting into the wind?”

Denise, it seems to me that you answered your own question. Yes, this platform gives you a community which appreciates you and encourages you. Yes, it gives you a free site where you can post articles. So, is it worth it? I think so, using those criteria.

If you were to ask me if it’s worth it as a money-making site, I might have a different answer. Then again, I might not. I don’t think HP is any better or any worse than all of the other content sites. There is still money to be made on HP. It requires you to follow very specific guidelines, and it requires you to learn as much about SEO as you can, but money can be made. Is it as much as it once was on HP? Probably not, but I still know people who are making a couple hundred each month, and that’s not bad money at all.

So, there’s two different viewpoints about it. I feel like I get tons of support from the HP community. That’s why I have stayed here as long as I have despite the drop in HP income. And, truthfully, if I wanted to make more money, I could. I know the SEO game. I know what it takes to make more money online. I just don’t choose to do so. For me, it’s all about community and friendship.

That was a rather long-winded answer, but there you have it.

More books by yours truly

More books by yours truly

Any Excerpts to Share

From Bobby: “I like it when you share excerpts from things you are working on. Care to share another with us?”

Of course I’ll share, Bobby! Thanks for asking. This is from the new Shadow book I’m working on, “Hidden In The Shadows.” I hope you like it.

“What in the holy hell are you doing, Baker?”

I hear those words quite often. My wife, Liz, likes to head-off trouble before it can germinate, and she assumes, most mornings, that my actions will lead to all manner of difficulties.

Truth be told. she is justified in that thinking. I seem to be a magnate for trouble, and that’s not even taking into account my supernatural association with the person I call The Shadow Man.

I am a shadow-hunter, as was my father, as was every Baker for the past two-hundred years. It is my job to find the Shadow Man, kill him, and end his reign of terror. It’s a thankless job simply because it’s impossible to actually kill the bastard. I can kill his temporal body, but he then just injects himself into another body and resumes killing. It’s like that old Whack-A-Mole carnival game. Kill one and up pops another one, an endless game of futility.

But it keeps me busy, so there you have it!

Liz was asking that particular question, on that particular snowy morning, because I was feverishly cleaning out our garage, something I had never done in the two years of our residence in that Olympia, Washington home. I am not terribly fastidious, and I’m certainly not the most organized human being to walk this planet, so it was a fair question.

Scroll to Continue

She handed me a cup of coffee, or to be exact a vanilla mocha she had purchased at The Perfect Cup coffee stand. She kissed me and tasted of strawberries. Her blond hair hung to her shoulders, her green eyes searching for an answer. I felt the old, familiar stirrings, quite normal when kissed by Liz, and I was thinking I could take a break from the cleaning long enough for a quick love-making session with my incredibly beautiful wife. As always, she knew exactly what I was thinking.

“Keep it in your pants, Baker. Sarah and I are taking Amber shopping. The kid needs new shoes, and snow be damned she’s going to have them, so no quick roll in the hay for you today. Now, would you mind telling me why you feel it’s necessary to clean this disaster of a garage on this particular morning. It’s colder than a witch’s tit out here.”

Sarah is our adopted daughter, barely over twenty, absolutely beautiful. She was once a homeless prostitute. We gave her a hand-up, took her into our home, and fell in love with her. Amber is our biological daughter, going on two years, and the heir-apparent to the Baker family tradition of hunting shadows.

The mocha tasted good.

“For your information, Miss I Must Know Everything, I’m making room for Amber’s car. I figure by the time I actually organize and clean this disaster of an area, she’ll be old enough to drive. Striker is coming over soon and he’s going to help me.”

Striker is my best friend not named Liz, a professional mercenary and trained killer, wanted in a dozen countries for an assortment of crimes against the state, a man who is well-known by the U.S. Government, a highly-sought after solver of problems, when all other non-lethal solutions have been exhausted.

“So, just so I have this straight, you and Striker are going to clean the garage for the purpose of parking a car, a car which has not been purchased, and will not be purchased, for another fourteen years. Do I have that correct?”

“I think you did a good job of summarizing the facts, yes!”

“Sweet Jesus! You need a hobby, Baker!”

Seo Tips

From Margaret: “I know you do SEO content work for businesses. Do you have any tips about learning more about SEO and how it can help me to gain more views for my blog?”

Oh my, Margaret. You just opened up a big can of worms. There are books written about this topic, and I mean a lot of books. There are probably a million articles online about this topic. There is no way I can do your question justice in this space. How about you email me at and I’ll give you the abridged version of the answer? I’m really not trying to dodge your question, and I suspect there are quite a few, reading this right now, who would like to know as well, but there isn’t enough room in the Mailbag to give you a decent answer.

In the meantime, go to the library and pick up a book or ten.

Ask Alexa for some SEO tips

Ask Alexa for some SEO tips

Back to Facebook

So, what do you think? Why are people so willing to open up about their personal lives on social media? I’m curious what you think.

Small Mailbag this week. Some weeks are like that. The Mailbag is only as big as you make it through your questions, so send me some questions in the comments below or in an email to the address mentioned above.

Have a great week and please, remember, to do all things with love.

2021 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”


Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 21, 2021:

Thank you Mary! You mentioned an important point about Facebook. It has allowed me to connect with people I haven't seen or heard from in decades, and that is certainly a good thing.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 21, 2021:

Thank you, Bill! I, for one, love having you a part of this community. Beyond that, though, I enjoy having you as a friend. Happy Weekend, buddy!

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on August 20, 2021:

Hi Bill. I am on Facebook, but I seldom post anything. Once in a while, I get in to see what my friends post. I suppose they are posting for their friends and family. I do like being able to find people I haven't seen in 50 years.

Thanks for sharing once more a bit of your writing. Looking forward to its completion.

Bill De Giulio from Massachusetts on August 20, 2021:

FB is an interesting animal. I use it to post new Hubs, to see what friends and family are up to, and that’s really about it. I don't get involved in any of the back and forth rhetoric that seems to run rampant. I think people open up and air their dirty laundry because it’s just so much easier to type the words than to say them to someone’s face. But, what do I know.

As far as making money here and is HubPages worth the effort, I guess it depends on who you ask. For me it has become a reliable monthly paycheck, albeit not a huge sum. But new comers must realize that it took years for many of us to get to this point. I love HubPages not for what I make, but for the friendships we make here and the platform to write about something I am passionate about.

Loved the excerpt, have a great weekend, Bill

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 20, 2021:

That's too funny, Brenda. I can hear the theme song in my head now that you mention that show. :) Sure it makes them feel good. I think everyone, to a certain degree, wants to think they are noticed by others.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on August 18, 2021:


I think sometimes they just wanna see if we are paying attention...that's whh they lose our words in cyberspace.

Or maybe it's to drive us crazy!

Anyways...Facebook kinda reminds me of that half hour sitcom..."Cheers" where everyone knows you're name.

I suppose it makes them feel good.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

Welcome back, my friend. It's nice to hear from you again. Don't stay away so long next time, ya hear?

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

Brenda, I think they are trying to drive us all crazy.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

Mazlan, I agree completely with you. That video header drives me crazy. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

All very true, MG! Making money on HP should be a bonus, not the goal. Thanks for your thoughts.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

Drives me nutso, Sha, but HP doesn't much care about my aggravation level.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 18, 2021:

Sounds good to me, Greg! I will never again sleep with a tree root poking my butt.

deergha from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!! on August 18, 2021:

Hello Bill, I am here after a long gap and really enjoyed reading your article. The hubpages is now different than the time I frequented, nevertheless I guess I will take some time to get acquainted. Many things have changed here. The comment option is actually took my time, earlier it was different and more convenient.

And Article is actually time relevant for one like me, particularly.

Hope you are doing good.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on August 17, 2021:

I left a comment last night.

It must be in cyberspace with Shauna's.


Mazlan A from Malaysia on August 17, 2021:

HubPages was great when I joined 9 years ago. A lot has changed and the thing that disturbed me most is that big video header and everything else that seems to follow you when you scroll down. It spoils my reading enjoyment and because it is 'our' HP, I tolerate it. If it is another site, I will just quit and go to other sites. Some of you may not agree with me but that's how I feel.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on August 17, 2021:

Bill, as usual, you have written a wonderful post, and you raise some very good questions about social media and hub pages. As far as hub pages is concerned I think it's a good site to hone your skills and enjoy yourself but the aim should never be to make money because I don't think you can make much money on this site. In case money is your game then you got to go for other sites but you may not have the same satisfaction there.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on August 17, 2021:

Same thing happened when I commented on Linda's article yesterday. And I made it to both articles before they left Guess I got caught up in a vortex.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Sha, it is the HP curse! Sorry about that, but thanks for trying. I know you are here in spirit always.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on August 17, 2021:

I left a comment here yesterday but don't see it. :-(

greg cain from Moscow, Idaho, USA on August 17, 2021:

Bill - too old for a tent now myself, but maybe we could figure that RV thing out. ;) After telling the stories under the stars, around the campfire, we could retreat to the RV for a good night's rest...

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Happy Tuesday to you, Rosina, and thank you! FB is an amazing site. I do think people want to be heard and feel like they are part of a bigger community.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Thank you Linda! I hope I get it finished in this lifetime. lol

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Interesting thoughts, Meg. Thanks for sharing your insights. It's fascinating to me. I look at the Facebook posts and just shake my head in wonder and amazement.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Thanks for the question, Greg! I'll have an answer for you on Monday. Storytime on an island? I like it. Wouldn't that be fun, about ten writers, camping under the stars, each night a story from a different writer?

Except I don't like sleeping in tents! LOL Have a great week!

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Thank you Alyssa! It is what it is....catch phrase which manages to be very accurate and appropriate every single time it is used. :) Happy Tuesday to you!

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Hey, Zulma, always good to hear from you. Normalcy indeed! What the hell does that look like? We are topsy turvy these days, whatever topsy turvy means. It sounds right for the situation we find ourselves in.

I have no answer about HP. They do their thing and really don't appear to care how it affects us writers. Pooh on them!

Be well and safe!

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Denise, you had me laughing out loud. A 12-step program for Facebook users. It's funny and yet, at the same time, it has an element of believability about it, you know? Yes, I'm sure you do.

Blessings, my friend

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 17, 2021:

Denise, if you don't mind, I'm going to tackle this in next week's Mailbag. It's an interesting question. I have some thoughts on it which I think will help others. Thank you for raising it. And blessings to you always.

Rosina S Khan on August 17, 2021:

I think being anonymous, people like sharing about themselves openly on FB. Generations earlier, people were tight-lipped, but then there were no platforms like FB.

I loved the excerpt from your novel, and especially this edition of your mailbag. Happy Tuesday to you, Bill, and I also wish you a great start to the week.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on August 16, 2021:

The Shadow Man sounds like an interesting character! Good luck with the novel, Bill.

DreamerMeg from Northern Ireland on August 16, 2021:

I think the urge to tell all is not new to social media. I used to teach interviewing skills to interview panel members. It was a LONG time ago and probably all outdated now - or maybe not. One of the skills they got taught (it's really difficult for some people to actually do it) is the power of silence. As a panel member, ask a question, get the answer and then stay silent, showing you expect more from the interviewee. Some people will get flustered and start talking nonsense. Others will know what you are doing and may say "that's all I have to say" but most people will start saying more about the subject. I have a theory that this is like social media. You write your own questions but very often readers are silent on the subject so you feel compelled to write more to get a response. Some of the panel members were unable to stand silence and started filling in the "space" themselves, instead of letting the interviewee think before speaking!

greg cain from Moscow, Idaho, USA on August 16, 2021:

Bill - Anonymity, or perceived anonymity, is a powerful thing. In addition, the little like clicks are tantamount to endorphins for some folks. They serve as validation of opinion. This all gives easy life and life support to hate and discontent, no-holds-barred divulging of personal details, all that...I think if we were all sitting on a desert island together, the mass of us with nothing else to do but get to know each other as we whiled away the hours...I think under those conditions, it would take much, much, much longer to get to the kind of details I can find on people in a quick browse of their FB profile and page. And so it goes.

If we were stuck on that isle together, though, I'd like it much if you could lead us in story hour. I loved the excerpt, look forward to reading more. I have The Shadow series on my to-read list and also on my Amazon wish list. I expect they'll get purchased for me next month for my b-day.

Good week, Bill, and thanks for the wonderful mailbag.

Here's a question for next time (or time after, I can be patient): do you put your novel-length plots together as a skeleton and then fill it in? I read somewhere once that Vonnegut sketched out the entire plot/structure for "Sirens of Titan" at some Friday night party in New England, then worked to put flesh on the bones after that. Do you work that way, or do you sit down and start writing, trusting the muse to take you somewhere meaningful?

Alyssa from Ohio on August 16, 2021:

It's truly amazing the topics that are shared publicly and in conversation nowadays versus when I was growing up. Times and societal norms change with generations. It is what it is, I suppose. Excellent mailbag, Bill! I hope you have a wonderful week!

Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon from United Kingdom on August 16, 2021:

Hey, Bill.

Not so much exile as got too much s*** to do. We've got a new cat who's still settling in, two of my kids got job promotions so, of course, there were celebrations to organize, I'm working on a cross-stitch that I want to give to my oldest as a Christmas gift, we've been trying to make up for lost time by getting out more, someone has asked me to make a draft excluder similar to the one I made for myself. Not an easy task when I made mine on the fly without a pattern. That was two years ago and I'll be damned if I can remember how. So that means having to sit down and create a pattern with no idea how to go about doing that.

Why on earth did HP decide on a time limit for comments? Do they not realise some of us live in different time zones and may be sleeping or working and can't get here in time?

At any rate, normalcy is something that's going to have to be redefined, I think. Maybe I should set an alert on my phone for when your hubs are likely to appear.

At any rate, good to hear from you too and my regards to your family as well.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Look at you, Zulma, here on a Monday. Heck, just you being here at all is a bit different. I hope you've been enjoying your little exile from social media, and I hope you are well. Let's hope the latter part of 2021 and 2022 bring us some normalcy, my friend. I miss bantering with you and others.

Have a great week, Zulma! My best to your family.

Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon from United Kingdom on August 16, 2021:

Hi Bill, looks like I made it in time.

As far as FB goes, maybe for the same reason people can talk to a stranger about their problems more easily than friends or loved ones. They're not emotionally invested in a stranger, so they don't feel the need to keep up appearances. Maybe they just need to hear themselves talk without interruption or fear of judgment. That's my two cents worth.

Loved your 'Shadows' excerpt. Hard to belive the little nugget is coming up for two already. They grow so fast. (sniff)

Take care, Bill, and have a lovely day.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on August 16, 2021:

By the way, my husband hates social media for exactly the reasons you mentioned but I'm on it to look into my kid's lives occasionally. I don't often comment but because they post photos and videos I like to see what I'm missing. I like to post photos of my art and then leave. Maybe that's the best way to navigate social media. It is like a drug. It's become the new addiction with people wanting more and more. The amount of time wasted on it can't be calculated and it sucks out all creativity and original thought. I know people who turn it on first thing in the morning and keep looking and posting all throughout the day till it is the last thing they see at night before sleep takes them. That's addiction! I wouldn't be surprised in decades to come if there were a 12-step program developed for Social Media Annonymous. I have no answers except to say that any good thing can be taken to extremes.



Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Good morning Misbah!

I think you made some very valid points about social media. I think there is a safety in social media. I think we all have a strong need to be heard and recognized, and social media gives us that from a safe distance. I also think there is an impersonal nature to social media, and many people today are more comfortable holding people off in the distance rather than face-to-face.

But I may be all wrong. lol

Happy Monday my friend, and blessings to you always.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on August 16, 2021:

Good morning, Bill,

Thanks for the answer. I was hoping for a long answer and you never disappoint! I was asked by a relative where she could go to make a little money with her writing and I suggested HP but that's just what she will make. Still, I love it here and will stay for the foreseeable future. My distant cousin is working on a book based on some great-great-grandparents of ours. She has letters written between them and then is filling in the gaps with fiction. The problem is that from the family information she has gleaned, she is taking sides and calling the book A Scoundrel and a Bigamist. But as I read the letters, he had some reasons for leaving his wife. She was no saint and through jealousy and gossiping with neighbors, practically drove him out of the house. I have never tackled a novel and can see the pitfalls of trying to make the characters well-rounded. My cousin needs to give Lizzy some dark sides and Charles some good sides or the characters won't be believable. I'm sure you agree with that. But how is it done based on the facts we know? I'd love to help my cousin but don't know what to say.



Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

I love your thoughts about social media, Dora. Thanks for sharing them, and I agree with them all. It's just fascinating to me, you know?

Happy Week ahead, my friend.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Good morning Pamela!! Yes, people do make that; there are writers you know who have been making that much for five or more years. Not bad at all, but I'll never see that kind of money and that's fine with me.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Good morning Chitrangada Sharan, and Happy Monday. I don't know why, but I love typing your name and saying it out loud. It is melodic and it just makes me smile when I say it. :)

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Thank you Peggy! There is much to be said about that cloak of anonymity, isn't there?

We are cooler now, a comfortable 75 today, no hotter than 80 all week. Now, hopefully, those wildfires will not start up. There are too many as it is; we don't need more.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

It can be overwhelming, Flourish. These days I just find it entertaining. As long as I don't allow myself to join in on political discussions, everything is fine.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

That is happening more and more often, John. The same thing happens to me. There are days I have to wait a full day before I see a notifications on the actual feed. Very aggravating at times.

Anyway, thank you my dinosaur friend.

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Who knows indeed, Linda? I know a couple people who use pictures of themselves from forty years ago. Why is that? It's like a dating app where you never really know who you are about to meet. lol Enjoy the cooler weather today, and thank you for your kind words. Am I Baker? Who, me???

Bill Holland (author) from Olympia, WA on August 16, 2021:

Thank you Manatita! Fear? Loneliness? A need to feel we are being heard by someone? Ego? A little of all of those, me thinks, my brother. Thanks for your thoughts, and blessings to you always.

Misbah Sheikh from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on August 16, 2021:

Happy Monday, Mr Bill. I really enjoyed reading today's mailbag. Brilliant responses to all the questions as usual.

Sir, I hate using Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and so on. In my opinion, Facebook is the worst platform anyone can use. Now why I am saying this? Yes, I also think people there are like open books. Their parents and partners aren't as informed about them as their Facebook buddies. That's actually weird but yes there's a reason.

I think it's because all of us are getting so active on social media platforms. In old times people used to talk with each other. The relationships were long lasting. They used to sit together talk and resolve issues. That doesn't happen now.

I think it starts from our own home when parents are so busy that they don't give attention to their kids they start to share those things with strangers on fb. This is how young generation is getting ruined.

Technology is both a blessing and a curse. What are your thoughts?

Take care . Stay safe and healthy.

Many Blessings to you

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on August 16, 2021:

Very good answer to the HP question. Altogether, very helpful.

Concerning Facebook, (1) Anonymity makes it easy to open up. Nobody's watching, nobody knows who I am (2) Copycats. If other people can tell, I can too. (3) False feeling of intimacy. These people are actually paying me attention by liking and responding, they must be family, or at least, they care. (4) Vulnerability is attractive to some people.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on August 16, 2021:

This is another interesting mailbag, Bill. My parents were just like yours. I don't put very personal things on Facebook, but I do put family pictures. I post some of my Hubpage articles also. I have been surprised at times by what some hae written, and I have no answer for you. Maybe people have less inhabitions now.

I didn't knnow anyone made $200 a month on HP. I don't make that in 3 moinths, but I only write 2 articles per week. Maybe they write more and have more contacts. I stay here for the peopel, like you.

Have a great week, Bill.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on August 16, 2021:

Happy Monday Bill!

An interesting read about social media fascination. Some people are obsessed with it, there is no doubt about it.

The reason to stay at HubPages is the same for me, as others have said—-The community. I enjoy my time here, and to be able to interact with writers across the World, is fascinating to me.

Thank you for sharing another wonderful mailbag. As always, I enjoyed reading it.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on August 16, 2021:

I agree that the community of writers and the feedback make this site an attractive one in which to write. It will be even more fun when comments are once again open on all of our posts, as was promised earlier this year.

Before the Internet, interactions between people were more personal in nature. There were more checks and balances. As Linda mentioned, the cloak of anonymity on social media has seemingly opened all kinds of doors that should remain shut for many reasons.

You do know how to engage a person with your writing skills!

Stay cool and safe up there! I hope you are not having to breathe too much smoke from those fires.

FlourishAnyway from USA on August 16, 2021:

People do share so much of themselves via FB and will often do so in person as well if you listen and ask questions. Its all a bit too much for me. FB is often people I have not seen in forever and may not recognize in person sharing about their medical and marital woes, mask or vaccine beliefs, political and religious beliefs, etc. And the photos of the food and kids! I can take it or leave it.

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on August 16, 2021:

An excellent teaser from your latest Shadows novel, Bill. I think I am a bit of a dinosaur as far as social media is concerned. I mostly just share memes, funny posts, photos I like, and the occasional link to my HubPages articles. I am very reluctant to share anything too personal.

To me, HubPages is well-worth writing for. I belong to other writing sites also but publish much more here, it is more satisfying and has a better community feel.

Funny how I get email notification you have published a new article but it never a notification here onsite and you don’t appear on my feed either.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on August 16, 2021:

Wow, Bill. I didn't sleep well last night, and have been stumbling and fumbling around this morning. Your Mailbag gave me the boost I needed, even more than this 1st cup of coffee. Great writing (no surprise there). But I guess that's because you write the way you talk. You're Baker?

Actually, you could be. You asked why people are such open books on FB, but two generations ago we were all tight-lipped. I think Manatita explained it very well. But (with a bit of tongue in cheek) might I add that there is a cloak of anonymity on social media. How many people know that you're using another person's photo for your profile and that in reality you look like George Clooney?

manatita44 from london on August 16, 2021:

As always, bro. A lot of the times we are on the same page, here about Facebook. Yet you're too kind. 'Fascinating? Ha-ha. Come to think of it, I might use that word myself. Chuckle.

It's happening because we are afraid, Bill. Many fears are born out of loneliness and insecurities. You can get tons of messages from people asking you to check them out and all you will see are several pictures of themselves, their favourite cat, etc.

Nothing of Light to offer, but the little 'i' ... the ego. the 'me and 'mines.' Plus some resentments. We desperately wish to be loved but reject the Light.

'Colder than a witch’s tit.'

'Amber is our biological daughter, going on two years, and the heir-apparent to the Baker family tradition of hunting shadows.'

Stand out lines indeed! Especially in the context of how the story flows. A truly exquisite piece!

Why don't I ask something? The heat has been bothering you recently, does it make a difference to how the inspiration flows? I mean, is it seasonal? Peace, my B.

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