Monday, April 19, 2010

Theme Week: Social Networking-- Well, okay, fine


It's just a bunch of Facebook statuses. Why would anyone want to know what someone else is up to every second of every day? Teenagers are the only ones who use it, and they just text about their trips to the bathroom and what toppings to have on their nachos.

All of these are excuses that I've heard-- and have used myself-- for not using Twitter. I have to admit, I still don't quite get it. But I have come to realize that there are benefits, despite the 140-character limit and soul-sucking-- I mean time consuming-- nature of the thing.

The main benefit, networking, was kind of nebulous to me itself until rather recently. I always had this vague image of networking as a term used by men in stiff suits, weary from days of financial reports, bandied about with phrases like, "Let's do lunch," and, "I think if we can just synergize on this, we can have a meeting of the minds and really power through." You know, the sorts of jargon-filled conversations that really don't say much of anything.

But it's true. Networking is beneficial. And you know what I've realized Twitter does? It gives you the opportunity to interact with otherwise un-interact-able people, like celebrities. People you wouldn't have a prayer of contacting any other way will totally talk to you on Twitter. Something about the format brings everyone to the same level (well, mostly).

So it's a great thing for writers, who suddenly have the ability to talk to agents, publishers, and other famous writers that they otherwise may not have. And that can lead to book deals, or Neil Gaiman reading your ARC, or any other number of really, really cool things.

So, is it worth it? I don't know. The chances of an agent signing me on my Twitter feed alone, or Neil Gaiman wanting to read my book, are slim to none. But, I do know that while I've been resisting the idea of and scoffing at Twitter for a really long time, I'm finally ready to give it a shot.

Do you Twitter? Care to share a link to your feed? What do you think about it? Positives and negatives?

19 comments:

Matthew Delman said...

Woohoo! Welcome to the Dark Side!

My twitter page is http://www.twitter.com/mattdelman, and the tweets have run the gamut more or less.

Though I did contact the special guest blogger for Free the Princess through Twitter originally. So that's where it comes out on top.

Taryn Tyler said...

I can't say I'm a fan of Twitter. Useful? Maybe but I don't think that's quite enough to entice me to suffer through all the obnoxiously unimportant events people feel the need to twitter about. That and I would rather say a lot to a few people than a little to a lot of people. That and things with buttons still scare me. Honestly I don't know I've survived in the twenty first century as far as I have.

Bane of Anubis said...

Ditto what Taryn said...

L. T. Host said...

Taryn and Bane-- yes, I still somewhat share your views. But I think the benefits may outweigh the inanity at this point, for me. Can't hurt to give it a shot, right?

Matt-- I knew you would rejoice in my fall. You're like Palpatine.

Rick Daley said...

I signed up for twitter months ago and have only tweeted once (when I created the account). I don't follow anyone's tweets. If I get a publishing contract, I'm sure I'll get on it as part of my personal marketing blitz, but until that day comes, I'll watch from the sidelines.

L. T. Host said...

Rick-- I'll have to follow you. It will be like watching Han Solo in the carbonite, waiting for the day he thaws/ melts/ forges/whatever.

What is up with my Star Wars references today?

fairyhedgehog said...

I keep up with a few friends on Twitter and I've made a few more. That's enough for me.

If I find someone's tweets don't interest me, I just stop following them.

L. T. Host said...

Fairyhedgehog-- that's a good policy. Thanks for sharing!

Matthew Delman said...

Star Wars is cool, that's what.

Do I have to be the wrinkly old man in the black hooded robe? He always makes me think of those cliche evil guy in black things.

Good analogy for Rick, btw.

L. T. Host said...

If you can think of someone cooler to be than Palpatine who fills that role, I'll allow it.

Renee Pinner said...

I have to admit that I don't get it. I have a twitter account, I see other people's posts, but I don't understand the actual logistics of the interactions. I'm still learning and hoping once I get it, I'll like it.

Stephanie Thornton said...

I feel like I barely have enough time to eat these days so the last thing I need is another time-cruncher. I do have an account so one day I might use it, but for now Twitter's a no-go for me.

Donna Hole said...

I'm sure the day will come when I have to take the plunge. Maybe then the iPhone will be an essential expense.

I get disgusted with FB, and its not the teens who fill it up with every 20 minute updates on random thoughts.

I just can't imagine spending any real time on the thread, though I sometimes would like to get in on the agent news.

Maybe I'll figure out blogging first.

........dhole

Adam Heine said...

I like Twitter, but I have a hard time trying to keep it limited. My current solution is to limit who I follow, but there are so many people I want to interact with... yet if I follow them I just know I'll want to read every tweet.

I do like the interaction though. I've made friends through Twitter that I would never have talked to otherwise. Networking. Yes.

Also, please don't use the word 'synergize' anymore. Ever.

L. T. Host said...

Renee-- I still don't quite get it either, but I've seen the power of networking in action, and I'm hoping that will be enough to be worth it.

Stephanie-- I totally understand!

Donna-- that's a smart plan. And while Facebook isn't always great, it's waaaaay better than MySpace, which I had to leave.

Adam-- Time-sucking is my biggest concern. I've already decided to resist sending it to my phone for as long as I can. And-- deal!

L. T. Host said...

Whoopsie, I meant: deal, as in, I won't use it again, not deal as in "deal with it". To clear up any internet- crankiness anyone may attribute to me.

J.J. Bennett said...

I do Twitter and have found alot of great ways to network on it. You can find other authors, who represents them, access to publishers, contests, and some very worth while information. Look for me on Twitter! jenniferjbennett

L. T. Host said...

Jennifer-- followed!

Adam Heine said...

I knew what you meant, LT :-)