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If you haven't read Justine Larbalestier's blog post about social media self-promotion for writers, you should. Obviously, as a writer who has actually published novels and made money, she has much more cogent and useful things to say about the issue than I do.

But I would like to add my two cents as someone who is attempting to do writerly things, and more importantly, someone who uses Twitter.

At one point, I saw a submissions call and checked it out. The publisher that issued the call had a note on it that basically said if you did not have X number of followers on Twitter and X number of followers on Facebook, you were obviously not serious about this writing thing and they wanted nothing to do with you. I found that incredibly offensive for a multitude of reasons.

Obviously, I know that being serious about being a writer isn't just about writing, as much as I wish it was. I'm not that naive. But this emphasis on social media, this requirement that you have to, by hook or by crook, have a minimum number of followers just pisses me off.

I use Twitter for fun.

I know some people acquire followers on Twitter by following people and hoping they get a follow back. That's never been my style, mostly because I read my Twitter feed in its totality. I may have to start messing with lists sometime soon anyway for time management, but I still am not going to follow someone unless I am actually interested in what they have to say.

Let me lay this out as a generic Twitter user: people who do nothing but relentlessly self-promote are goddamn boring. The authors that I follow (Justine Larbelestier, John Scalzi, Jim Hines, Neil Gaiman, etc) are on my list because they're interesting, not because I want to be updated daily on what they're selling. I like the heads up on new things coming, but they have a hell of a lot more to say than just "buy my book."

I have unfollowed people before because they rarely Tweeted anything that wasn't about their products. I've also unfollowed people because they were boring. What this tells me, as someone who now might want to approach this from the other side, is that maybe being on Twitter just so you can tell everyone to buy your shit is not going to work that well.

I don't like That Guy, you know, the one that only wants to talk to you so he can try to sell you something and tell you how awesome he is. I'd hazard that no one does. I refuse to be That Guy. You can't make me.

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
gookachu
Aug. 21st, 2012 09:52 pm (UTC)
yep.

we have a twitter, tumblr, Fb, and all that other jazz. i obsessively post on tumblr (naniwear.tumblr.com if you get on tumblr). the majority of what we post is news stuff, stuff we're interested in, and in my case on tumblr, a lot of cumberbatch and captain america picspam. oh, and cosplay photos we take on cons.

it's not called "social networking," it's called, "building a community." the ppl that are so focused on "social networking," kinda don't get the point.

[EDIT] you should get a tumblr. it eats your life. but, OMG, the loki picspam is PHENOMENAL! did you see that tweet i sent you this morning? someone's leaked a bunch of avengers behind-the-scenes, gag reels, outtakes, etc. i posted one of hiddleston cut footage to you.

Edited at 2012-08-21 09:55 pm (UTC)
katsudon
Aug. 21st, 2012 11:03 pm (UTC)
you should get a tumblr. it eats your life. <--- why I don't have a tumblr. I spend way too much time on Twitter as is.

My friend Rynn bombs me with some of the best picspam. XD I appreciate the heads up whenever I get them.

Seriously, building community should be the thing. I just... ugh. I hate people who aggressively self promote on social media, and I'm really afraid that more pressure is going to get put on me to be like that the deeper I get into writing. -.-
gookachu
Aug. 21st, 2012 11:28 pm (UTC)
nahhh. the more ppl push you, the more contrary you get.
katsudon
Aug. 21st, 2012 11:34 pm (UTC)
Eh, there's a little bit of that too, but in the early days of tumblr I took one look at the interface and was like oh fuck no. And at this point I don't regret it because I really do have too much shit eating my time with just twitter and the bit of rp messing around I do on plurk. I'd rather avoid the shinies and have some extra time for writing.
gookachu
Aug. 22nd, 2012 02:48 pm (UTC)
but the shinies are so nice!!

btw, there's also a /r/ for britishladyboners. and, another /r/ for cumberbitches.

i gotta have something to look at when i'm working!
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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