View Full Version : Help with being an intelligent human being and not an SEO dweeb, please

06-03-2015, 08:59 PM
Okay, so I've read that sticky, along with quite a few threads both here and on the self-publishing forum. My intelligent human rating wouldn't be particularly high at the moment. I haven't done anything wrong, but I basically have zero online presence, except for here.

But I do write, quite a bit actually, and I'd really like to publish. I have no idea if that will be self-publishing or trade, although I'm going to pursue the latter option first, because I like the idea of entering the pool at the shallow end. But either way, everyone seems to recommend an online presence, so it seems I should establish one.

The whole idea of social media rather overwhelms me, so I thought perhaps it might make sense to ease into the thing.

Part of the problem with social media is that I don't know how to add value to it. Running about, hither and yon, asking people to buy my books (which don't yet exist) just didn't seem very, uh, me. But if I could approach it like I do AW, asking for the odd bit of help (like here) and trying to give value back by critting and posting comments that are at least meant to be helpful, that I could see myself doing. Except I don't really know how to start.

Where to start should probably be Twitter. I at least have a Twitter account (CathleenTown3), and I've tweeted for the pitmad thing. Not much of a start, but considering I've never logged onto GoodReads, don't have a Facebook page or website or blog, it seems the likely place to begin. And many of the self-publishing threads have said that Twitter is a valuable platform to be involved with. The question is how? And what on earth should I do to add value? I can hardly post a crit there.

Do I just look up AWers with whom I have nodding acquaintances and have Twitter in their signatures and send them a little message along the lines of "Hello, just wanted you to know I thought of you and I hope you have a nice day?" I could do that, but I don't really know if that's the sort of thing people do on Twitter. I'm happy to congratulate people on meeting their writing goals, like in the threads here, but currently, I don't even know if they post about them.

I figure this'll be a multistage process, so I've decided to break it into bits. Once I'm somewhat comfortable with Twitter, I'll add something else. And hopefully, I'll end up with a reasonable level of proficiency with social media by the time I publish.

So, I'm looking for help, if any AWers would be so kind, especially in the area of establishing a Twitter presence. Thanks. :)

Maggie Maxwell
06-03-2015, 09:28 PM
As far as twitter goes, there's a thread around here somewhere with AWer twitter IDs in it (found it (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?109507-AWers-on-Twitter-Tell-us-who-you-are!)). Post your username there and start adding people. You don't have to explain who you are to anyone. Just follow and start tweeting. If you see anything on your feed of tweets from people you follow that you want to comment on, then do so. try looking up a few writing-based hashtags too to find people you might want to talk to. #amwriting is a popular one if you want to cheer people on with their writing goals.

I've been on twitter for a while now, but I'm not very active and am still learning. The hardest part of social networking is making time for it and sticking with it. Everyone has different ones that are better for them than others. I use Goodreads more for personal record-keeping than social media, I barely touch Facebook and Google+, and I'm still learning Twitter after a few years, but I can rock a Pinterest account like nobody's business. Nothing says you need all of them. Find the ones that work best and, most importantly, are most enjoyable for you. :)

Maggie Maxwell
06-03-2015, 10:00 PM
And this is why I love Pinterest: I just stumbled on this link, which will probably help a lot.

How to Get Noticed on Twitter - 15 Tips for Writers (http://www.makealivingwriting.com/writers-win-social-media/)

Old Hack
06-04-2015, 11:00 AM
The important thing about social media is the "social" part. Use it to engage in conversations, to connect with people, and that's all you need to do. If you're going to mention your books or try to sell them, make sure that no more than about one tweet or comment in ten is about your books, or you'll put people off because of your spamminess.

If you engage and make those connections, you'll have fun with it; and you'll make friends who are genuinely interested in you and your books, and who might well buy them. If you mention your book all the time, you'll just find yourself blocked.

06-04-2015, 09:32 PM
Thanks for the advice, Old Hack. With the exception of PitMad, which I think is okay because sending pitches every hour is expected, I'm trying to treat the Twitter feed like I do rep points. Sort of a 'hey, I saw this and thought it was interesting' (but with details) kind of thing.

I figured now was a good time to start because I don't have a book to pitch yet. I'm still revising and doing beta swaps, tuning queries, etc.

One detail I'd like to ask. When I retweet, if it's something I've read (in SYW or as a beta) and can personally endorse, should I add that to the message? Or is it better just to retweet the the message as is? I could see it going either way.

And I'll check out Pinterest, TA Maxwell. But like I said, I'm trying to ease into this thing.

Maggie Maxwell
06-04-2015, 09:39 PM
And I'll check out Pinterest, TA Maxwell. But like I said, I'm trying to ease into this thing.

Oh, I wasn't saying you needed to do it now or even at all. By all means, take your time. :) I'm just an addict and I often find things when I need them on there. We were talking about Twitter, I opened my account, and there was the link on using titter.

06-04-2015, 10:17 PM
Thanks, it was a lovely article. I changed my profile based on advice from it already. :)

09-04-2015, 05:55 PM
Who do you see as the audience for your writing?