Good Morning. I'd like to broach the topic of social networking. Much has been said about this ever-evolving media and I'm not about to rehash every topic, but what I would like to do is share my thoughts with you.
First, I do believe it's a necessary evil. Back when I first started writing, I had no clue about blogging. NONE. A friend at my daughter's then pre-school said, "Oh you should blog if you're writing a book." And I was like, "What is that?" Seriously. Clueless. So I jumped into the fray with my blog and made oh-so-many mistakes, but I found my way, and a few friends, and lo-and-behold, I have a nice blog, a nice smattering of friends and followers, and I'm quite content.
Now some people really get the machine that is Blogger and how to go about building scads of followers, but I'm not one of them. Not that I would mind 1500 followers, but I would have no clue what to do with them. As I put writing at the top of my priority list, right below The Monster, it's impossible to follow the almost 400 blogs I have on two separate blog rolls everyday. I do what I can and hope that's enough.
Now, let's take a look at Twitter. I joined because everyone kept telling me it's a great way to get my books "out there". I have a love/relationship with it. I admit I am inept at it, don't know the "rules", have made mistakes and quite frankly don't care. People follow me, so I try and be polite and follow them back. I hate that I have to wade through 90000000 bits of information just to find anything remotely interesting. I post once around 6am and find that's about all I can handle. Not much socializing there. (I did make lists, but don't use them.)
Goodreads is meh. I feel like I don't spend as much time there as I should. I want to, but I don't read as many books as I used to. I haven't read anything "new" (published within the last 5 years) unless it was given to me, or won in a contest, or have been asked to write a review. Quite frankly, I don't know what to do with it.
LinkedIn is another social network I have. I do like it, because I don't have to do anything with it. I have it linked to my Twitter account, (and I think it's linked to my blog but I'm not sure) and I rarely check on it, maybe once a month, because it's not something I know what to do with either.
I am NOT on FaceBook, nor will ever be. I know I was on the fence with Twitter and finally caved, but rest assured, I will NEVER join FaceBook, not even with a fan page. I have my reasons and they're private.
As far as Tumblr and Pinterest and whatever else is out there, nope, not doing that either. I might even close my Twitter account because I just hate it so much some days.
Now some people can be social butterflies and are very good at it. Throw me into the midst of a cocktail party, or any other kind of social function and I can chat it up with the best of them. But it's a different atmosphere. This whole other thing that is "media" is just daunting, and quite honestly, exhausting.
The one thing we're told as writers with published books, is that we need to keep writing and keep publishing, whether traditional, small press, or indie. That is a FACT! Follow the big name bloggers and they all say the same thing. Just write. Write the next book, and the next, and the next.
The problem is, without the machine of a publishing house (and sometimes even with it) we're also told to promote, promote, promote. And what better way to do that with social media.
Tell me -- Do you find social networking as daunting as I do? How many sites are you on? Do you use it every day, or just when you find the time? Is it just a promotional tool for you, or are you actually socializing?