16 September 2009

"Social Networking. Does it Work?"

I was lurking on a Twitter Kid Lit Chat last night and social networking sites were brought up. Do Twitter, Myspace, Facebook really help spread the word about books? What kind of updates/tweets do you like to read? Is Twitter replacing blogs? How do writers keep these social networks separate from the personal life?

Good questions!

I have an account with all three of these social network sites and a blog so I thought I’d give my two cents…

Do Twitter, Myspace, Facebook really help spread the word about books?

In my experience Twitter, Myspace, and Facebook don’t help me to sell books. I can’t say that for every author, but what I use these sites for are to connect with other writers, readers, and industry people. It is a way for readers who have read my books to stay updated on what might be going on with my writing or giveaways. It’s a way for me to keep track of my favorite authors, celebrities, TV shows, and the publishing industry.

What kind of updates/tweets do you like to read?

I like to read tweets that are clever and make me smile. I like to read tweets about interesting industry links and powerful quotes. I like to read tweets about topics I’d like to converse with other people about. Twittering is fun and informative and can just take a few seconds to dish out.

Is Twitter replacing blogs?

I don’t think Twitter is replacing blogs because of the short character count. But I will admit since I’ve been tweeting, I don’t blog as much. If I have a thought that I can simply type and send out quickly rather than taking the 15-20 minutes to blog, then I’m going to tweet it. I’m all about saving time these days!

How do writers keep these social networks separate from their personal life?

Very carefully! haha. I have to admit Facebook is more of a social site for me. I rarely use it for promotion because I have many family and personal friends on the site. If I have an interview or event, I’ll definitely post it on FB, but FB has turned out to be my procrastination station. I try to keep Twitter, my blog, and Myspace strictly writer friendly, but I do slip up every now and then. 🙂