Monday, October 22, 2012

Karmic Monsters

I've read a lot about Karma lately.

It goes by a lot of names. Kismet, fate, aura, vibrations in the universe and what comes around goes around.

In this month of October black cats, ghoulies, ghosts and other creepy monsters, Karma seems like the kind of monster that can go either way. It also seems like the monster most people are likely to run into, whether you believe in it or not.

I guess I just gave away my Karmic leanings.

Karma strikes me as an idea that makes amazing use of human selfishness. If you want good things to come your way, be good to others.

In the context of writing and social media, I don't think that means retweeting other people's tweets or writing meaningless positive reviews about work you haven't read and have no plans to read. I also don't think it means hitting like on Google Plus and Facebook posts at random.

In my opinion, Karma is earned only if it's genuine. If you love a writer's book, tell them. If you see something amusing/interesting/thought-provoking on Twitter, retweet it. They key belongs to you. I guess I'm giving the same advice I remember reading in Seventeen Magazine when I was fifteen. Be yourself, honest and real, and good things will come your way.

If Karma does exist, my guess is the reverse side, the vicious back end, works just like the front end. If you don't love someone's work, behavior, or anything else, don't take it upon yourself to announce that fact to the world. Smear campaigns are not attractive, nor are they an efficient use of time. Jumping up and down and screaming is the adult version of a tantrum. Vendettas and revenge are only captivating in stories.

As for me, I'll be avoiding both black cats and walking under ladders.

I'll continue knocking on wood and following the excellent advice of Seventeen Magazine in hopes that maybe, just maybe, I'll meet that perfect, cute bit of Karma. If I'm lucky it'll ask one of my books out on the date that pushes them straight to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. 

Now that's dreamy!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Amen! It must be genuine.

Connie J Jasperson said...

I SO agree! It's why I sometimes go 2 - 3 weeks between book reviews on my review blogs and also why I don't accept submissions! If I can't say something nice, I don't say anything, since everybook is the heart and blood of the author, no matter how bad!

I reviewed Losing Beauty and I must tell you this, Persey is awesome! The premise of the story is unique and immdiately captured my interest. Your narrative is vivid and compelling. Once again I tell your fans, if they haven't bought it yet - they should!

Jo Schaffer said...

Here, here!Totally agree.
My first book is all about karma,
Finished my latest revisions and am ready to send it back to my agent! Yay!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

What comes around does go around, even if we don't always see it.

Johanna Garth said...

Alex, yes absolutely.

Connnie, thank you. You just made my day!!

Jo, I really, really need to read your first book.

Diane, exactly!

Jessie Humphries said...

So I shouldn't want to kick my puppy who is ripping all my carpet up! That would probably be bad Karma. I am really not violent, don't get me wrong. I wont do that. It's the WANTING to do it that makes me feel bad! Anyway, I could be a nicer person for sure!!!

Victoria Smith said...

Love this post and I agree. What's crazy is that I watch my mother in law and my aunts on FB participate in those Facebook means that say you have to like something or so and so will happen. It's like come on now, LOL. Always do something bc you want to. Not because you feel you have to.

Anonymous said...

I'm a big believer in Karma, so I'm wondering what I did to earn a $1,200 car repair bill.

Anonymous said...

Being genuine is KEY!

Also, Seventeen has the best advice ever. ;p

Jemi Fraser said...

So true!! Being genuine is the only way for it to work!

Unknown said...

I love this post. I stopped following my local RWA chapter's loop, because everyone kept asking for non genuine likes and such. I don't give them. They have to be earned, like you said.

Unknown said...

I'm so with you there, Johanna. A great post! :-)

~Sia McKye~ said...

Things that move me, I tweet or share on FB. I don't do it to cater to the one who wrote it, but show appreciation for a shared thought.

Kinda I knows what I likes sort of person and I've never followed the *trends* and never angled to be part of the *in* group. I prefer original to a hundred copy cats. Don't care much for toadies either. But that's me.

I happen to think Seventeen is correct. Always be yourself, Johanna, because usually is pretty wonderful.

Michael Di Gesu said...

No truer words were written.

I believe and Karma... Especially in the times we live in, positive and honest reinforcement for work well done is crucial. It's meaningless otherwise.

Setting your best foot forward is always a good thing. People will respond positively to your real and honest demeanor.

Jenny Milchman said...

Amen, amen! Genuine is key. We can't fake this. Sometimes it hurts, saying something hurtful: No, this doesn't work for me; Sorry, I can't do this.

But when we *do* do things, if they come from the heart, it hardly matters if they come back around, right?