Caught on Camera, by Natalie Anderson

by Natalie Anderson, author of Caught on Camera with the CEO (Harlequin Presents Extra, December 2010)

My name is Natalie Anderson and I’m a YouTube addict.

We don’t have a telly in our house but folks we’re aren’t missing out at all – not when we can find so many fun bits and bobs on YouTube! Yes, our computers are our all-in-one entertainment systems. My kids watch old school Muppets, I watch 80s music videos, my husband watches air crash disaster documentaries… It’s incredibly fun – and best of all, you can avoid the ads!

But seriously, given I try to write very modern romance with a ‘hip, happenin’, now’ vibe, I think it’s part of my job to keep tabs on what’s happening within popular culture – and media like YouTube, Twitter and Facebook give real-time window on what’s hot out there. (Okay that’s my feeble excuse, but I’m sticking with it).

I’m forever fascinated to see what people put out for all the world to see. I’m intrigued by the clips fans make based on favourite movies/shows/actors etc, I find it so interesting when you get acts like Justin Bieber who’s fame came from home-made clips uploaded onto his own channel (the latest one seems to be this lip sync kid.

And the fact is people do put very unwise things out on the Internet. Here in New Zealand a young man has just been sent to prison for a few months in part for publishing an explicit picture of his ex-girlfriend on the internet – making it available to the over 500 million Facebook users. Then there was that American college girl who wrote a mock thesis based on her ‘research activities’ involving the university Lacrosse team – the report that she sent to just a couple of friends got sent on and on – until there’s someone like me in New Zealand reading about it in an online UK newspaper – how’s that for an example of something going ‘viral’?!

I really wanted to explore the idea of viral vids and the impact that things like that can have on private lives. In my book, CAUGHT ON CAMERA WITH THE CEO, the clip featuring Dani and Alex isn’t uploaded by themselves of course. What they thought was a private, intimate moment in an elevator is filmed on the security cameras and it’s someone else who grabs the clip, adds a cheesy track and puts it out there for all to see. And there are consequences – as there always are – although it isn’t long before the vid is really the most minor of issues that Alex and Dani have to face…

But, because it is so fun and easy to do, I thought I’d share a couple of my favourite YouTube clips. First up is an oldie but a goodie – it’s impossible not to laugh along with these wee cuties, and as a mother of multiples I just sit there gasping and asking ‘how does she do it with FOUR?!?!?!’

Then YouTube is frankly brilliant for current news. Back in September my home town of Christchurch, a couple of hours up the road from where we live now, had a 7.1 magnitude earthquake. It was at 4:35 a.m. and was terrifying. It was the biggest quake I’ve ever experienced even though I was two hours away from the epicentre. My husband and our three year old twins were right there in Christchurch though, staying with family. Thanks to the mobile phone network, and the Internet (especially Twitter) I was able to keep up with what was going on and actually keep my husband informed as they had power out. Have to say that morning converted me completely to the power of Twitter. Anyway, here’s a compilation of some of the raw security camera footage from a couple of shops during the quake. Security cams don’t record sound so someone has added a track. There was serious damage to our city’s infrastructure and many buildings have gone but miraculously no one was killed.

And of course I use YouTube a lot for inspiration!!! I search out music, images, anything that might help me with my latest story. Now here’s a little clip that got recirculated amongst a number of Harlequin authors a while back… This one will never, ever, ever date and it is super hot and yes, there is a beach scene in my work in progress!

So those are just a few clips I think are interesting for very different reasons! And yes, sometimes authors end up on the Internet too – I’m on YouTube here pretty much giggling my way through my first ever telly interview of a few years ago and then there’s where it was my first time coping with the trials of a live link up…

If you’re as much of a slave to social media as I am, then come and find me on Twitter and if you ‘like’ my Facebook page before November 30 then you’re automatically in the draw to win my latest books, chocolate and very cute pewter wine glass charms to have in time for the party season!

Meanwhile, have you got some favourite YouTube clips? Have you had experiences of something going viral? Come share some links in the comments below!

Caught on Camera with the CEO

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Comments ( 11 )
  1. Desere
    November 26, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    Hi Natalie

    I am going to be honest I watch You tube videos now and then but not that often I LOVE READING TOO MUCH !!

    I just wanted to take the opportunity to say thank you for the great books you write and thanks for sharing them with us !!

    Have a great day and thanks for the great November prize competition !!


  2. Abby Green
    November 26, 2010 at 2:54 pm

    Natalie that quad babies video is HILARIOUS! Just put it up on my facebook page..! Thanks for making me smile! x

  3. Abby Green
    November 26, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    This is my favourite video at the moment….

  4. Joanne Dannon
    November 26, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    I have to agree with Desere – I read much more that trawling through the internet.

    Don’t get me wrong – I love seeing great utube vids – including Abby’s tango and the 4 babies laughing. But I prefer someone else do the “hard” work in finding and posting them so then I can just watch 😉

    BTW – I really enjoyed “Caught” and it’s comlimenting book 🙂

  5. Danny
    November 26, 2010 at 6:03 pm

    This video gets me every time I watch it, as long as the other “Sassy Gay Friend” videos. In this one, he helps The Giving Tree from the book of that name… It delights me. 😀

  6. Melanie Milburne
    November 26, 2010 at 6:07 pm

    What a great premise for a novel, Natalie! The internet is such a wonderful tool but the legal system hasn’t kept ahead of it in terms of privacy and so on. We’ve had similar things here in Australia with people taking photos with mobiles phones such as women sunbaking topless on the beach. You have to be so careful not to do anything that can be uploaded it seems!

  7. Sally Clements
    November 26, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    I love ‘Caught’ – really great writing. I also love you tube… altogether too much watching clips from true blood.. this is my current favorite, especially the last line.

  8. Natalie Anderson
    November 26, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    Oh thanks so much – can’t wait to watch these clips!

    Am so sorry those other links aren’t working properly – you can see the address up the top but it’s searching it it within the blog site unfortunately – can’t fix it during the weekend sadly!

    will be back to chat more later – the kids have their music recital today – more to add to the home movies collection! 😉

  9. Christina Hollis
    November 27, 2010 at 4:09 am

    Natalie, I really love the Quads film – I’m sending the link to my sister whose triplets turned three this week.
    Hope the recital goes well!

  10. Amy
    November 29, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Oops, sorry about those broken links everyone! They’re fixed now.

    My favourite YouTube vids? I confess, I STILL watch Susan Boyle’s first appearance on Britain’s Got Talent when I want to smile. 🙂

    And for another laugh, David After the Dentist:

    (though I feel a little guilty watching it because this video will haunt this kid the rest of his life!)

  11. Bianca
    December 23, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    Loved the book .. The characters are so well defined waiting for lorenzos story I think it has something to do with Sarah 🙂