Guest Post by Author Molly E. Lee!

Today on the blog, we're lucky enough to have Molly E. Lee, author of ASK ME ANYTHING, here for a guest post talking about her thoughts on social media in the YA/book community! So without further ado, let's introduce Molly and share her guest post -- and you can also find more information about the book at the bottom of this post!

About Molly! 
Molly E. Lee
Molly E. Lee is an author best known for her romance novels, the Grad Night series and the Love on the Edge series. Molly writes Adult and Young Adult contemporary featuring strong female heroines who are unafraid to challenge their male counterparts, yet still vulnerable enough to have love sneak up on them. In addition to being a military spouse and mother of two + one stubborn English Bulldog, Molly loves watching storms from her back porch at her Midwest home, and digging for treasures in antique stores.
Keep up with Molly: Website / Twitter / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram

Guest Post!

Molly: I believe social media is sort of a double-edged sword—it has both positive and negative aspects—but it is an essential tool in the book world.

There is something terrifying about the instant connection social media gives us and it has both positive and negative effects. A positive can be that it will connect loved ones with pictures and messages that may not have been available because of the distance separating them. A negative can be a teenager in school, seeing a post that all her friends went out to lunch but didn’t think to invite her along. This creates that instant hurt and rejection without actually being directly rejected by the group who went out. It’s a tough line to walk and makes high school, even middle school, about twenty times harder than it used to be. In the past, before social media, everything was hearsay. There could be a rumor about an event or a person, but that could be chalked up to petty gossip. Now, with the instant access everyone has to the details of our lives, there are often pictures or videos to back up the story. It’s a scary way to live, knowing that any mistake you make could go viral.

This also applies in the book world. Negative reviews of our work happen—it’s a given in this business because the beauty of art is that no two people will see or read it the same way. Authors go into this career choice knowing that and accepting it, but it doesn’t make it any easier when we see the bad reviews or someone making negative comments about your work. As a rule, I tend to stay away from reading reviews—I have someone close to me read them and if there are any details that can help me grow and learn in my craft, then they relay them to me. But, there have been times that people have tagged me in negative reviews, drawing my attention to their opinion. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, of course, and social media gives us a platform to express those things in which we are passionate about. It’s when the platform is used for malicious purposes that make me cringe. These instances are the reasons we so often see our peers posting “I need a break from social media. See you in a month.” Sometimes the onslaught of negativity and outright hate splashed across our feeds is overwhelming and it’s sad.

But, on the other side of this social media sword, is the positive effects. Stories of amazing human beings going viral or a singular person reaching out in the world who feels alone and is hit with comment after comment from people who have endured the same situation. The bond through shared experience can happen from the comfort of your own home. Where you once felt unreachable you are now connected with people who have the same interests and passions and together you find yourself healing. This was a major theme in my upcoming release Ask Me Anything in which Amber creates an anonymous blog where her peers can write in asking for sex advice and more. The idea that there is a safe place to go and be heard when those physically around you can’t or won’t understand is an inviting and comforting concept. And a reachable one as one of the perks of having access to endless platforms on the web.

Another positive, especially for the book world, is the connection I experience with readers and bloggers and aspiring authors and more. One of my favorite things is to get a message from a reader about how they’re reading or read my book and hear their thoughts on it. Hear how they relate it back to situations they’ve been in or their family or friends have been in. I love helping aspiring authors as well when they reach out. And I absolutely admire each and every blogger for what they do. The time and effort they put into each book they read, each post, each feature…it’s incredible and something to be applauded. And luckily, social media allows me to speak my thanks directly and instantly.

The online book community can be a truly wonderful and beautiful place to be and it’s all made possible by the modern platforms given to us. I have readers who have become dear friends to me, bloggers who have become mentors, and fellow authors who have become best friends—all made possible by social media.

Ask Me Anything touches on both the light and dark sides of this modern tool, and Amber’s character shows her strength by using it as a force for good. A force for change.

It’s not the topic or the filter on the photo or the amount of views that gives the tool power—it’s when the person behind the computer, phone, or tablet, decides to use the platform to try and create a positive change in the world. That’s where the true power lies.

I’m so grateful you had me over today to chat! I hope you’ll enjoy ASK ME ANYTHING when it releases on May 7th! Be sure to check out the EPIC giveaway I’m hosting in celebration of its release! Spoiler alert—there is a laptop up grabs!!! 

About ASK ME ANYTHING!

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Title: Ask Me Anything
Author: Molly E. Lee
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Publication Date: May 7th, 2019 

Summary: I should’ve kept my mouth shut. But Wilmont Academy’s been living in the Dark Ages when it comes to sex ed, and someone had to take matters into her own hands. Well, I’m a kick-ass coder, so I created a totally anonymous, totally untraceable blog where teens can come to get real, honest, nothing-is-off-limits sex advice. And holy hell, the site went viral—and we’re talking way beyond Wilmont—overnight. Who knew this town was so hard up? Except now the school administration is trying to shut me down, and they’ve forced Dean—my coding crush, aka the hottest guy in school—to try to uncover who I am. If he discovers my secret, I’ll lose him forever. And thousands of teens who need real advice won’t have anyone to turn to. Ask me anything…except how to make things right.

Thank you so much to Molly for stopping by and guest posting on our blog! We are super excited about ASK ME ANYTHING and can't wait for it to be out in the world on May 7th. Keep an eye out for our review, coming soon!

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