Monday, January 6, 2014

Has Social Media Changed For Writers?

When I started this blog about five years ago or so, writers were already being encouraged to have a social media platform. The truth is that I quickly found I enjoyed interacting with other writers and all the amazing information out there that I was able to slurp up. It really is wonderful and amazing the resources available these days that weren't there before. Even if that means simply reaching out and interacting with like minds from your home. 

I found Twitter and blogging to be my primary interactive sites, both places that I enjoyed the conversations and information being shared with other writers. I had tons of fun on Twitter chats. It's something I'd still love to do, but find my time less now that I have another kid. 

I still enjoy these platforms, but have heard whispers (or maybe a few shouts) about blogging not being what it used to. I've added FB, Pinterest, Instagram and Tumblr to the social media mix, managing all of the above with IFTTT so that I can simultaneously post to more than one medium in case there are people out there who interact with me only on one and not another. 

But something else has changed as well. I'm now a published author. Well, I was before, but I mean I've published a novel and have more in the works. So now I want to not only continue interacting with other writers, but my time has decreased AND I want to find potential readers to interact with. 

So what does all this mean?

I enjoy this blog and the group blogs I post on (scene 13, Enchanted Inkpot, First Five Pages Workshop, etc.) but I haven't been as interactive as I like lately. I've had to prioritize. I love finding new posts about craft, but I don't seek them out quite the same as I used to. That's the honest truth. I want to. But I am only one person and I need to make writing my first priority (aside from family obviously). 

Here's the bottom line: And I believe this will NEVER change. 

Participate in the social media that means something to you. If you are genuinely interested in participating and communicating with others then it shows. If all you want is to do it because you think you will get people to buy your material, forget it. It's like writing, you shouldn't write something because you think it's trendy if it isn't what you're passionate about. You can tell. And let's face it, if you're writing, you have to LOVE what you do or you'll never make it for the long haul. 

It's the same with social media. Do it because you care.

What do you think?


  1. Right there with you, babe. Now if we could only clone ourselves, because I care about a lot more than I have time to do. Just blogged about that this morning. Sigh.

  2. Fully agree, Lisa! In fact, that's the advice I keep seeing. No longer is it to get on everything but pick the areas of social media you love and be consistent. I'll go one further and say that most recently I've read advice about not being too reliant on building a fan base on Twitter or Facebook where you don't have direct contact - like with a blog or newsletter - because what if those platforms die or fade? And I don't think social media sells more than 1% of books - that is the social media we control. The kind we want that is word of mouth we have no control over. I think writers are getting smarter about their time.

  3. I agree with everyone. Social media could easily suck up all our writing time - and time is SO hard to find! I've only ventured into blogging and twitter so far, but am considering FB too. I wish there was more time! :)

  4. So agree, Lisa. It all takes time and you need to focus on what you like and be consistent. The blogging takes so much of my time that it's hard to be as consistent on Facebook and Twitter. But I see lots of people more on Facebook that blogging so am trying to be there more. I do still think blogging is the best to make friends and say more. But I'm liking Twitter and Facebook for talking to people I otherwise wouldn't connect with.

    I do think it's unrealistic to expect blogging to work for you unless you visit other sites. If you only have time to blog and not follow, your readership will diminish.

  5. Yes -- do it because you care. That's it completely and I can't add a thing.

  6. Ditto completely to what Martina and Natalie have said. I so wish I had more time. I've actually temporarily disabled my Facebook account just so I have one less thing to think about. The second young child really is a kicker in terms of needing to let go of social media that you can't keep up with. I'm fearing for the future of my blog because I just don't have as much time as I'd like to visit and comment on all the great posts out there. Or rather, I COULD make the time, but then I wouldn't be writing at all. Which is why I got involved in the blogging community in the first place...sigh. Baby just woke up from nap, gotta go! (See? This is what I'm talking about! :))

  7. Yeah, what you said! Thanks for posting this, Lisa.

  8. I'm in the same boat. I've had to just do what I can, but put family and writing first. But I truly love interacting with everyone, so that part of it is so important to me. Plus, I still learn so much from blogs!

  9. I've just started blogging this year ad so far I've found that it's definitely a labor of love. The one thing I'm really reluctant to do is Facebook- sometimes it drives me crazy! :)

  10. I think you're right: be serious about the things you care about, let the others slide.