I'll be the first to admit that it's easy to forget that EVERYTHING we do online is seen by many. You get on your own little group or blog and think you can speak your mind and there won't be any backlash. That's not quite the way it works though.
When we come across someone doing or saying something unprofessional it makes us cringe, doesn't it? An author talking about another author on Twitter, an author bragging about how many books she has published on her group, an author spilling her guts about how much she hates the review she just received and she's telling ALL of Facebook.
For most of us it makes for a very uncomfortable feeling! Sort of like when you ask someone how their day is and they start telling you all about their cheating spouse, their drunken mother, and the fact they can't get rid of that horrible rash. Um, alrighty then! LOL
In my opinion--and that's all this is, one person's opinion--there is a time and place for these sorts of conversations. When you're upset it's so easy to forget that one very important rule. You need to let off some steam. That's natural! Maybe you're just really excited about a new contract and you can't wait to tell everyone your good news. There's nothing wrong with wanting others to celebrate with you. And there's not a single thing wrong with wanting a shoulder to cry on when you're pissed about a crappy rejection letter or some reader trashing your book on Amazon. But some things are better saved for your close circle of friends or you spouse or maybe your mom. When I have the need to vent I email a few of my writer buddies privately. They email me when they need to let off some steam as well. It's a good system. I can curse all I want and they get it. Best of all, the general public doesn't have to see me act like someone just ate my last square of chocolate. LOL
Why am I bringing this up today? Lots of reasons really. And I'd rather not get into all that here. The important thing to remember here is that every single time you blog, post a message to a group, update your status message on Facebook, join in with a famous blogger in trashing one of your fellow authors is that people ARE watching you. Agents. Editors. Publishers. Readers. Reviewers. Fellow authors. AND (shudder) your in-laws! ;-)