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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Putting Your Shoes Out There

So, I'm on a roll with this whole social networking thing. Yesterday, it was Twitter. Today, it's Facebook. That's right--I have a new Facebook page. You can follow me there and on Twitter by visiting the links on my sidebar. What's with all the new social networking? You might ask. Well, I think it's important. For today's Thursday's thoughts, I want to dive into this topic. How important do you think social networking is for aspiring authors? I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I think it's highly important. Maybe not for the reasons you think, though. Here are my reasons to actively participate in social networking sights. #1: You meet people of like mind. There is nothing more valuable to the aspiring author than others who are in the same boat. My guess is, most of us don't physically interact with other writers. If we do, it's on a limited basis. Why not connect with people just like us on line? It makes sense, doesn't it? #2: You learn a lot in the process. Whether it's a tweet, a Facebook status, or a blog post, everything you read garners knowledge. Maybe it's about the industry as a whole, a particular agent or publisher, or a specific writing technique, there is valuable information to be gained from others. #3: You form a connection with people of importance. I know from experience that agents and editors do, in fact, check in on the on-line presence of prospective clients. The aforementioned may not choose to represent you based on the level of your on-line presence, but they do appreciate the fact that you have one. It builds a professional appearance if nothing else. #4: You are laying important groundwork. Whether you are published or not, the greatest marketing tool you have is your name. It's not one book you are selling; it's you as the author. (This does, however, require that the writing is good, as well.) Anyway, the more people who recognize your name, the more people who will choose one of your books over another on the bookstore shelf because your name is familiar to them. Why not start getting that name out there now? #5: You are having fun. Yes, you read that right. The most important part of social networking is that it's fun. It's like going to a party without having to get all ready. You can wear your pajamas for all anyone cares. No need to pull out the make-up and high heels. After all, no one can see you. Okay, so there you have it. My thoughts on social networking. Please share yours.

18 comments:

Amy DeTrempe said...

You are right, it is fun and I find it intereting reading your thoughts. I wrote some blogs about social networking this past weekend or maybe it was Monday (everything flows together) that are set to post on Friday. I may be linking back to you.

K. M. Walton said...

I have "met" the nicest people on Twitter...and of course my blog.

Carolyn V. said...

I totally agree. I have learned so much from interacting with others and met so many great writing peeps. =)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Yes! I have learned so much from social networking. But more than that, I've made some wonderful friends. :-)

The Book Nut said...

One thing I like is the inspiration I get from time to time by something someone posts. It might be a one line status update on Facebook or an entire blog entry, you never know what will strike just the right cord in your mind. Now if I can just use some of that inspiration to actually write something I'd be in good shape! I think someone could write quite the interesting book based solely on the posting of their friends and acquaintances! Having fun is certainly top of the list for these sites. There's nothing worse than a grouchy, unhappy person constantly posting depressing things!! Have fun!

Jen Chandler said...

Great thoughts!

I enjoy blogging the most. I have met so many wonderful people (authors, artists all) and I look forward to posting and reading comments.

Facebook I think I would like if I had an author page, simply because it would be more free flowing with the writerly info and friendships.

Twitter? I haven't joined that nest yet. I'm still on the fence with it. Not to mention I don't have a phone that will "tweet". Yes. I AM from the dark ages...

Great post!
Jen

Solvang Sherrie said...

I enjoy blogging and Twitter. I quit Facebook not too long ago and I haven't missed it yet :)

Melissa said...

Those are all the reasons I love blogging!

Trish said...

I started blogging so that I could meet like minded crazies. I love commenting and posting, and I'm so glad I decided to bite the bullet and do it. I haven't done the twitter thing. I don't know...to tweet or not to tweet? That is the question. :)

Robyn Campbell said...

You slipped in on me. Twitter and facebook. I feel I must warn you. My son's FB was hacked and my computer got a virus that was so bad, I lost everything. So please be careful. Will follow you ANYWHERE, my friend.

I'm on Twitter, sometimes. :)

Heather Sunseri said...

I was reading Robyn's comment above. My advice for Twitter and FAcebook is never click on a link that wasn't posted from a reliable source. Make sure you "know" theh person. Also, I don't spend any time on Facebook using outside apps. I don't play games on Facebook. None of the extra fluff except Visual Bookshelf where I post what I'm reading or what I've read. Other than that I only socialize/network. It was the extra apps and stuff that got a lot of people hacked recently.

Welcome to the virtual party, Susan. You can use it/enjoy it as much or as little as you like. It doesn't have to take over your life - like some warn against. Must find the balance that's right for you.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Yes, it is fun! Everyone is so nice and friendly.
I love meeting so many like-minded people. Plus, I learn things beyond writing on them too.

Laura Pauling said...

My writing is definitely enriched through writing friends online. And I do think it's important to have a web presence if agents check you out. And it's better to have the learning curve behind you if and when you get a book deal.

lotusgirl said...

These are exactly the reasons that I do the social networking thing except for facebook. That is for me to connect with my family. I've been on it since it was opened to the general public. I don't really use it as a networking tool. I like to keep it more private because I'm posting family pictures.

MG Higgins said...

Loved your post and everyone's comments. Very informative. I still don't know about Facebook and Twitter. I've barely got blogging down.

Haddock said...

#1 and #5 are so true.

Mindie said...

Facebook is an incredibly powerful network for writers, allowing the writer to develop relationships and actually deepen them. It's like one big networking event that is always going on - 24/7. You build the network and it's always there for you to check in, exchange comments with your friends, offer support, build relationships, ask a question and keep your name in front of folks. Nothing has helped me as much as Facebook..

Good luck with the social media outreach. Love your writing style.

mb

Name: Holly Bowne said...

Those are all such great points, Susan. And I love all the commenters tips. My piece of advice is to use a timer! I set a timer when I'm on FB and Twitter so I don't use up all my writing time goofing around!

I do believe writers need to participate in social networking and I could not have said it any more eloquently than you have!