It was 1994, and I was a graduate student studying public relations at Boston University. I was asked to interview Charles Rosen, a producer for the original “Beverly Hills 90210,” for an article in the alumni magazine. The magazine editors, knowing I was from LA, figured he and I would have a lot in common. And considering they used to film some of the “90210” scenes down the street from my childhood home, I thought Mr. Rosen and I would hit it off.
Little did I know at the time, that one piece of advice from Mr. Rosen during our interview would serve me well throughout my career. “Don’t fall in love with your words,” he said, “because somebody above will probably change them.” And he was right.
After graduate school, I moved to Atlanta and worked at a small PR agency for three years. And, for the last 13+ years, I’ve been with one of the largest global PR firms. I’ve worked with some of the biggest consumer companies in the world including McDonald’s, Ford, Sony and Gatorade. I’ve spent countless hours writing news releases, bylined articles, marketing proposals, brochures, advertising copy, public service announcements, radio copy, mat columns, fact sheets, photo captions, media alerts, pitch letters, letters to the editor, video news releases, etc.
I’ve carried Mr. Rosen’s words with me every day as colleagues, bosses and clients have “changed my words,” sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.
When it came time for me to write something personal, based on my own experiences and initially for my own pleasure, I relished the opportunity to write what I wanted, how I wanted and when I wanted. You see, my husband and I met online. After we married, I was recalling some of the hilarious experiences that I had with both traditional and online dating. I decided to capture some of them in writing, and from there, a novel emerged. Click: An Online Love Story is about a young woman’s search for love in Los Angeles with the entire story told in emails between her and her friends, and the gentlemen suitors she meets online.
It was only after I considered publishing the book that I nervously harkened back to Mr. Rosen’s advice. I took the plunge and explored the traditional publishing route, getting feedback from multiple literary agents. One suggested that I rewrite the book into a typical format with just a few emails here and there. But I wanted to stay true to my vision. Another agent explained the current economic state of the publishing industry to me. Due to the large investment to edit, produce, distribute and market a work by an unknown author, many large publishers won’t take the risk. She recommended self publishing as a way to get my work out there and allow me to control the process.
I took her advice and self-published Click: An Online Love Story – and ultimately the follow-ups Double Click and Right Click. And honestly, I couldn’t be happier. This is the story I wanted to tell, the way I wanted to tell it. And so, thanks to the popularity and ease of self publishing, I say to all of the aspiring writers out there, “Go ahead and fall in love with your words.” With self-publishing, only you have the power to change them.
About Lisa Becker
Lisa had endured her share of hilarious and heinous cyber dates, many of which inspired Click: An Online Love Story, Double Click and Right Click. The books, about a young woman’s search for love online in Los Angeles, have been called, “a fast read that will keep you entertained,” “a fun, quick read for fans of Sex and the City,” and “hard to put down.” The first in the series has now been optioned for a major motion picture.
She’s written bylined articles about online dating and has been featured in Cupid’s Pulse, Garmental.com, TV Grapevine, GalTime.com, Single Edition, Career 2.0, The Perfect Soulmate, Chick Lit Central and numerous other book blogs and websites.
As Lisa’s grandmother used to say, “for every chair, there’s a tush.” Lisa is now happily married to a wonderful man she met online and lives in Manhattan Beach with him and their two daughters. So, if it happened for her, there’s hope for anyone!