Friday, January 11, 2013

To Tweet or Not to Tweet

by Suzanne Graham

In today's writing world, I'd offer the bold statement that authors can't afford not to be on social media. I know that was a horrible double negative. Let me rephrase: In today's writing world, self-promo is a major component of selling books, and social media is one avenue authors should not overlook.

The question becomes how much is enough? And I would say that has to be left up to each individual author, but a good marker would be to get yourself out there at least daily in some form or another, whether it be Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads. There are so many options for connecting with readers.

The other side of the issue then is when is it too much. I suggest closely monitoring the time an author spends on social media in relation to the time spent actually writing. It's too easy, as I know from personal experience, to ignore my real purpose as a writer (to write books) and spend my available time sucked into the world of tweets and status updates.

If you are new, or not so new, to the world of Twitter, I recommend this helpful article called, "Twitter Tips for Authors". I wish all the authors I follow on Twitter would follow these great suggestions, especially the one that says, "Don't try to sell your book." As a tweeter, I'd much rather get to know people first then decide if I'm interested in reading what they've written. Remember it's "social" media, not "ad" media. The hard sell from authors is very tiresome coming through my timeline day after day.

If you are a published or not-yet published author, I would say you really don't have an option about staying out of social media if you hope to sell your book/future book to a wide audience. Readers are more and more interested in connecting with authors on a personal basis. You have to put yourself out there and make the connections. You never know who you will meet and who will become your next best writing buddy - again, speaking from personal experience. :)

So go forth and Tweet boldly!

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