You’d kinda hope that an overnight fame experience would leave you feeling lifted and loved? Mine left me feeling rejected, distraught, stupid and red faced. I wasn’t seeking fame, I was just trying to better my online marketing skills – and here you should know that what I know about marketing could be written on your thumb.


So, in a great moment of illumination, I decided to expand my circle and join sites where I could market my books. A social network group I signed up to in Athens looked promising. The administrator had written –‘tell everyone what you’re up to. Share your events or promotions.’ Someone was promoting a book event.  Another an art festival. Three more were promoting books. I wrote, ‘Looking for a few people to review my childrens’ book Omzak the Space Cat Warrior.’


I clicked to post my message but it wasn’t sending so I kept clicking. When it appeared on the page it was instantly followed with messages by random companies telling us how to. 

Have a life of wealth and abundance. 

How to make a million pounds in a month

How to enlarge a penis, add serious income, buy life insurance, find a sugar daddy, get a good divorce settlement,

Within five minutes the social network group were up in alms. I had no idea what was going on and was just quietly reading comments from outraged members.

‘I want this exploitation of a social network website for nefarious business invitations stopped.’

‘Whoever started this should be blacklisted.’

‘Excuse me – why do I have all these spam messages in my box?’

‘I want this filthy messaging STOPPED NOW. This is not a porn site.’

‘This all started with the woman promoting her childrens’ book.’

WHAT? I was the culprit? HOW?

The social group were fighting tooth and nail with each other.

Someone had written to the person wanting the filthy messaging stopped. ‘Who’s treating this like a porn site? Perhaps you should get professional advice because its obvious you hate men.’

Someone wrote ‘Who are you Stella Ralfini?’ Why did you start this?

OMG, what did I do? Write and apologise for something I knew nothing about? 

I switched my laptop off and prayed.  Please make this horrible thing go away.


When I switched it back on the fighting was not only still going on but had turned into a ferocious battle.  I had dozens of new messages.

Every other one was STOP THIS NOW or WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?


When I checked the site next day I’d been blacklisted. I became famous overnight for being a troublemaker!