A couple of years ago when I started marketing my first novel, Guardian Spirit my publicist gave me a list of “must do’s”: I must set-up a Facebook page. Not just one but two, one for my personal use and one to use strictly as an author page. Not just set the pages up but try and attract hundreds of friends. And we all know to get friends you’ve got to be one… that takes a lot of time.
Another “must do” was I had to set-up a twitter account and start tweeting. Tweeting and re-tweeting was just not me. It’s hard to say everything I want to say in only 140 characters? I set the account up a few years back but didn’t really start tweeting until two months ago. I have to admit I’m kind of enjoying it. But here again to get followers you must become a follower.
Then the publicist said I needed to create a website, and blog consistently. Consistent for me is once a week. Usually on Mondays, depending on my schedule sometimes it’s Tuesday. The publicist said I needed to blog about my novel and the art of writing. That’s all well and fine but after a few months of telling about my book I was pretty sure folks were tired of hearing about Sadie and her guardian spirit, Blackie.
Sure I blog about my work, and, the art of writing but now and then I have to broaden the horizon and talk about other aspects of life. I’m a spiritual person. I like to blog about things that will uplift someone, or let them know that other people have hard times too but that we must keep on trudging forward. Tomorrow is always a new beginning. Our slate is wiped clean at the break of each new dawn.
Other “must do’s” are: Join writing communities such as, Redroom, She Writes, Good Reads, Google +, Book Club Network, Live Journal, Amazon Author Central, ASMSGS, World Fiction Writers, Fiction Writers Guild, and The Author Think Tank! These are just a few. There are literally hundreds of groups you can choose from. So, how do we pick? Writers certainly can’t accept every invitation that pops up on their iMac screen.
This writer is finding it hard to gouge out a few hours a day for writing because of all the social media demands. I read some good advice the other day, not sure where it came from but it said that a writer should pick two or three of the above writing communities and interact with them, and not try to keep up with them all. Why? Because it is impossible.
When I joined one of the above groups a few months ago I started out getting a few emails from members everyday, now there are over 600 coming my way in one day. Needless to say I don’t have time to read every one of them so they go in the trash.
Another situation that I’ve found very irritating is when someone posts about a million Facebook messages a day. Last week an author sent out almost 200 messages about her new book in only a few hours. I have my Facebook messages sent to my email so it took me a good long while to get all of them deleted. Then guess what I did? Not only did I “not” buy her book, I clicked the un-friend button.
Social media is a wonderful way to get your message out to millions of people and stay connected, but it can drive you crazy if not handled in the right way. For me what started out being fun has become a chore. Thirty minutes a day of socializing has turned into hours. So, do like me and stop friending, following and joining every group offer you get. Be selective. Pick a few places to share information and ideas and stop all this crazy social media chaos.