Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Enough Already, I Got it the First Million Tweets

For the past six weeks, I've been drowning in my editors’ red ink (yes, I’m either so bad or so good I require two separate editors. Due to my fear of discovering the truth, I prefer to ignore the whole two editor situation so please don’t ask me about it.).
Don't tell me my work is so bad, I need two editors.
What? It's because my work is so bad? Aaack! I told you not to tell me. 

Anyway, due to my all-revision-all-the-time mode for the last six or so weeks, I’ve been out of the loop blog-wise. I normally try to read three or four writing blogs a week (not counting The Writer’s Vine, which I do read regularly) but since April, I’ve only perused a couple, one of which, a blog by Indie Author Russell Blake, has really stuck with me. One line in particular has niggled around my noggin since reading it last month.

Why such a niggling, you may ponder my ever inquisitive friend. Because it covers a topic that has bothered me since I began my half-hearted and definitely depthless attempts to participate in social media (a misnomer if there ever was one, the more involved in social media the less social the person, at least that’s the way it seems to me).

One of the biggest mistakes some writers make (none of us, I assure you) is their the blatant, obnoxious, and flagrant self-promotion. Man oh man does that get old. Which is what Russell Blake’s post Doing It Wrong discussed. The line that struck home was this—I especially hate the silliness wherein authors tweet a sentence from their own book with the wonder reserved for new parents posting photos of their ugly brat. Get. Over. It. Nobody cares.

My reaction when I read this was YES! Finally, someone feels the way I do about this narcissist and pointless attempt at impressing the rest of us with their pearls of brilliant writing, which is usually anything but.

Now, I’m not talking about providing excerpts especially on Excerpt Mondays, Yahoo chats, and other publicity opportunities we all take advantage of those, myself included—those are different. No, what Russell Blake refers to is something that is definitely cringe worthy. We’ve all seen them on Twitter or Facebook, a writer posts a sentence or paragraph he or she is so proud of they feel it is their duty to share it with the world. There was a guy on Twitter who for a full week (maybe longer, I untweeted him or whatever it’s called when you remove them from your list) tweeted line after line after line after line. At the end of each nugget of magnificence he had a buy link. I wanted to scream at him, "Do you really think anyone will buy your book now?"

Of course, being a true southern gal, I did nothing of the sort, but I did de-twitter him. I wonder if he noticed.

The lesson we writers should take from this is to promote when and where it's appropriate, and that it's never a good idea to bombard, bombasts, or barrage your potential readers. Of course, the difficulty is to stay on the right side of the very thin line between too much and too little, and there, in my opinion, is the rub.

To read the whole post go to http://russellblake.com/2014/05/

Follow my blog at http://www.gabriellaausten.com/


Big Mike said...

Put the coffee cup down and step back from the screen. Too much caffeine. There, is that better?


Michael Davis (Davisstories.com)
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2012)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

In a recent seminar on advertising/promotion, the moderator said, “Make yourself interesting, don't flash your product over and over," or words to that effect.

Everything we write in fiction comes from somewhere inside us. A blog is the perfect place to share the source, intrigue readers and subliminally sell ourselves -- with appropriate links.

Liz Fountain said...

The only way I can make it work in my head is to think about social media as a means to connect with readers.

Selling books - that's a nice side effect. If they're interested in what I have to say, they'll try a book. Or maybe they read a book and that's why they found me on the Interweb. Either way, it's relationship building - that's my approach. I'm not a best-selling author (yet), but I have fun.


Gabriella Austen said...

Much better, thanks Mike.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful picture of turkeys. I think it reflects the entire social media situation. They sell something too. :)