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Social media and the writer- a guide to surviving tweets, memes, and posts.
Once upon a time, a middle-aged woman believed that you sat behind a computer, wrote a book, edited the book, published the book, and then had a 12-part Netflix documentary made of your life.
It seemed so simple.
But, then again, everything seems simple when you first start.
As I put the final touches on my book, I started shopping around for publishing agencies and book agents. I wanted to see what was out there and how already-published authors paved the way for newbies. I found so much information- posts, blogs, tweets, memes, websites, YouTube videos, TicToks, and books that I can’t honestly tell you how to do it. Everyone has a different opinion.
What remained constant was social media.
Here is the kicker- I have spent two years building my blog and social media platform- expanding from only family to a respectful 72 followers. I have read, replied, and engaged with anyone who followed me or whom I followed. Not all the time, since it is a full-time job. But it was on my weekly schedule. I wanted everyone to feel like someone was reading their stories.
It seems that this is not enough.
I was advised recently that publishing companies and book agents will only engage with an author if their book is ready for publication – yesterday – and they have a substantial social media following. The writer should have already edited the book, designed the book cover, started book two, and kicked off selling book one before you send off query letters asking for representation.
What do these people get paid for?????
I have a decent social media following. NOTHING to brag about. So along with my husband’s business, I started working on my social media platforms. I have begun to follow other writers, purchase books from self-published authors, engage and celebrate the good news, and make my posts.
But there are so many damn different social media platforms! Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tiktok, Goodreads, Reddit, Linkedin, YouTube, and WordPress… Each one can take up an hour a day to engage, post, react, publish, create, and sell yourself. And according to all the websites, you have to be relevant on all of them.
And now, I am not only worried about my writing career, but I have also added the additional stress of a start-up company. This is because we sell a unique product that not everyone needs or wants- snakes. You have to put a lot of effort into finding like-minded people who enjoy animal species with no legs. Not to mention, most of your business will come from reptile shows if you don’t have a brick-and-mortar business front.
Reptile shows are all about social media. Before the show, you must sell your business with pictures, posts, and links. Keeping up with your fellow business owners is imperative since reptiles are constantly changing due to new breeds, improvements to equipment, and updated scientific studies. It’s not enough to sell snakes… you have to be an expert. And there are a lot of damn snakes on this planet.
I took last week off of work to finish up some editing for my book and do my research on social media platforms. I studied trends, pricing, research, and statistics on both markets …. authors and small business owners.
But on Christmas Eve, I discovered the key, the Holy Grail, the answer to the test!
I have to quit my job.
Or give up sleeping altogether.
There you have it, folks- the answer to surviving social media.
Follow me for more tricks of the trade!
And remember, friends- Be Great at what your Good at… even if it is the dreaded social media.
2 responses to “Social media and the writer- a guide to surviving tweets, memes, and posts.”
Isn’t that what you have hire an assistant for? Oh, you have to pay the assistant? Does that mean you are your own assistant?
I needed to read this post tonight – thank you for the laugh and honesty!