R.S. Williams

All I want is to get the words right.

Tag: Social Media

Thank you, patrons!

A thousand thanks to the following people for their support!

Bill Brown
Allison Fix
Kweilin Wilson
Lisa McGovern
Kelley Frank
Ali Lauer
Grayson Hugh
Nicole McLaughlin
Emily Katzenstein
James Floyd
Leeann Ward
Crystal Woods
Syd Mooney
Kit Ketcham
Cheryl Lougen
Dana McGlon
Scott Johnson
Carole Thorn
Kenny Gray
Val Williams
Gina Adamson-Taylor
Steve Taylor
T. Westgate

These patrons’ support makes my independent creative work possible. They can access photos and stories I create just for them—material they won’t see anywhere else. (For others who’d like to sign up: here’s my story, and here’s a direct link to my Patreon page.)

Thanks again, patrons. You’re the best!

Photo: “Self-Portrait in Gray and Navy Stripes” (Rabun County, Georgia – 5 October 2017)

© R.S. Williams (all rights reserved)


Notes from the Happy Kitten Cottage: Next Issue Out Aug. 20

A quick reminder that the latest issue of Notes from the Happy Kitten Cottage, my twice/thrice-monthly newsletter, will go out Sunday 20 August. The newsletter is mostly “notes on my writing & photography, my cats, rural places, plants and wild animals, dilapidated buildings, country music, and Lord knows what else.”

You can sign up here, and unsubscribe anytime.

Photo: “Self-Portrait #3, 2 August 2017”


Notes from the Happy Kitten Cottage; or, I’ve Got a Newsletter Now

Yes, I’ve got a newsletter now (even if I don’t have any eyebrows in this photo).

It’s taken me six years, but at last TinyLetter’s easy-to-use format found me, and I’ve begun Notes from the Happy Kitten Cottage. It’ll come to you once a week, on average. Don’t worry, I won’t spam you. We’ve all got plenty of stuff in our email inboxes as it is.

As I note in the About section, it’ll be “weekly notes on my writing & photography, my cats, rural places, plants and wild animals, dilapidated buildings, country music, and Lord knows what else.”

Interested? Sign up here.

I’ll probably send the first newsletter in another day or so. They’ll all be archived, so no worries if you miss one.

TinyLetter will show you a confirmation page, and will send you an email with a link to click (to verify your sign-up). You can unsubscribe anytime.

Thanks again for reading. You folks are the best.


© R.S. Williams (all rights reserved)


An Epiphany, Post-Workshop


Several months ago, I attended a marketing workshop on how to get more mailing list subscribers. The hosts covered some interesting and useful strategies. However, over the last year, I’ve been to at least a dozen similar workshops. They all miss the same thing.

In their quest to blast a message to as many people as possible for as little money as possible, these marketing folks forget the number-one reason readers sign up for email lists in the first place: because they like what they saw or read on a website. In other words, they sign up for the quality content.

Around Facebook, I keep seeing a meme worded along the lines of, “Don’t be impressed by degrees, titles, status, or followers.” Although memes often annoy me, this one contains an important truth: long-term engagement is what makes the whole social media thing work.

Likes and clicks are meaningless without an ongoing, sustained conversation between readers and website owners. If a website or social media account posts poorly written, poorly thought out content, people won’t be back. The Internet is far too large and far too interesting for readers to wait out the junk in hopes that something good will eventually show up.

After the seminar ended, I felt sad and restless. Too bad the hosts had missed the concept of great content. That, I thought, might be a big reason why many products, services, and authors never get anywhere in their online efforts.

But then I realized, as clearly as the day is long, that I already had a plan. I didn’t need to worry. Because if there’s one thing I know how to do, it’s how to make the kinds of photos and tell the kinds of stories that people want—the kinds they aren’t getting anywhere else.

Marketing seminars be damned. I’ll make my own path, tell my own stories, and create my own art. It’s what I want. It’s what my readers want. And it’s why I’m here to begin with.

Photo: “Self-Portrait B, 13 September 2016”

© R. S. Williams (all rights reserved)


Join Us for a LIVE podcast: Sun 10 July at 4pm Eastern!

2016-04-06 15.37.12

Another reminder that I’ll be a guest on The Show video podcast tomorrow (Sunday 10 July) at 4pm Eastern time! W00t!

Brian Mallard, Timothy Childree, and I have a lot to squeeze into just one hour. I mean, there’s writing, photos, country music, pro wrestling, Southern food, and bizarre stories. Plenty of bizarre stories.

I’ll talk about my novel-in-progress, Songs My Father Barely Knew (links to an excerpt). I’ll also give a brief reading from my work. So far, nobody’s requested bad guitar playing or interpretive modern dance. So far. But, hey, anything could happen.

To join us:

  • Follow this link at 4pm on Sunday 10 July.
  • Program not streaming on the website? Just click here to follow along live on The Show’s official Facebook page.
  • Can’t join us live? No problem! It’ll be archived, so you can watch later.

See you then!

Text and photo © R. S. Williams
“Listen to Merle R. Haggard” shirt courtesy of Trailer Parkman


Tune in to The Show on July 10!


Just a reminder that on Sunday, July 10 at 4pm Eastern, I’ll be a guest on Columbus, Georgia-based video podcast The Show. Looking forward to talking with Brian Mallard and Timothy Childree about my work, recent and upcoming projects, weird Southern stories—and probably even our memories of The Four Horsemen of professional wrestling. Hope you’ll join us!

Oh, the shirt? It’s just telling the truth.

Text and photo © R. S. Williams


July 10: I’m a guest on The Show!


Mark your calendars! At 4:00pm Eastern on July 10, 2016, I’ll be a guest on The Show (link to Facebook page), a wonderful weekly video podcast based in Columbus, Georgia.

Brian Mallard, Timothy Childree, and I will talk about my work and upcoming projects, plus country music, Southern food,  and whatever else crosses our minds. The podcast stream, which you can find here (link to website), begins at 4:00pm sharp on Sunday, July 10, 2016. Hope you’ll join us!

Text & photo © R. S. Williams (all rights reserved)
“I ♥ Remember Country Music” shirt by Standard Deluxe, Waverly, AL


My official Facebook page is live!



If you’re on Facebook, I hope you’ll check out my new official Facebook author page. I’m posting new content there on the regular, with a bit of overlap with what I post on my personal FB profile. Stop by, Like, and follow to keep up with the exciting new announcements and projects coming soon!

© R. S. Williams (all rights reserved)


Back to the Soul: Making Grayson Hugh’s New Album Happen

I hadn’t been on Facebook all that long when I began following Grayson Hugh. Back in the late ’80s and early ’90s, I adored his work, and thank goodness he was still making excellent records in 2013. Liking his artist page was natural. I expected I’d see the latest album and show news, a holiday post now and again—the stuff you’d normally see on a celebrity’s social media page (read: boring, canned, written by a PR wonk).

But then award show season arrived, and I found myself snort-laughing at his commentary on all the red-carpet foolery. The back-and-forth with his loyal fans was far funnier than anything the show writers had thought up. He had a sharp, well-read sense of humor grounded not just in extensive pop cultural knowledge, but in literature from Shakespeare to Ralph Ellison and beyond.

The best part? This was no media relations person behind a nationally-known musician’s Facebook page. No, this was Grayson himself. “This guy knows what he’s doing,” I said. “He knows social media’s about relationships, about ongoing conversation. Most people don’t get that.” It warmed my cold, cynical little heart.

A few months later, I opened up Facebook to see a bunch of new Likes on a short creative nonfiction piece I’d posted—”37205,” a piece about the cold, eerie sounds of an ice storm in Nashville, Tennessee. Thirteen likes; one was from Grayson Hugh. I sat stunned for a moment, then ran back and forth through the house Doppler-squeeing with glee, scaring the cats out of at least three lives each. When I texted my sister a screenshot of the Like list, she called me to Doppler-squee all the way from Denver. Goofy, yes, and true.

That was October 2013. Since then, I’ve gotten to know Grayson, and am happy to say that he’s one of the kindest, most interesting, and most talented people I’ve ever met. Not many of us can keep creating over several decades without getting stale—and I hope Gray will eventually clue me in on how he does that, how he keeps every album fresh and solid and unpredictable and damn good. I’d also like to point out that he’s an amazing prose writer, in addition to his incredible verse- and music-writing skills. I’ve met only a handful of songwriters over the years who wield that kind of power.

His upcoming album, Back to the Soul, starts production in Charleston, South Carolina, in early 2015. With a week or so left in his Indiegogo campaign, he’s looking to get this independent record fully funded. There are wonderful perks available at every level—from a signed CD, to a picnic with Gray and his wife/harmony singer Polly Messer, to a one-on-one songwriting lesson, to a backyard concert.

I’m proud to call such a fine artist and person my friend, and to play a small part in making this album a reality. While we’ve done pretty well so far, we’re not quite to the full fundraiser goal, and we have just until December 15 to fully fund the project.

So come on and join us! Click here to find out more and contribute—and thank you so much for supporting Back to the Soul. 


I’m on Instagram.


Look me up—I’m rswilliamswrite (opens in new tab). And I’m having loads of fun.

© 2017 R.S. Williams

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑