Friday, May 17, 2013

My take on social media, by Wendy Delsol



My online voice has dialed back lately. This has been a choice. And I’m happier for the decision. It has afforded me perspective. With the benefit of overview, I’ve made a few important self-observations.
I’m a novelist. I love to write books. My time is, therefore, best spent writing novels.
I do not enjoy writing blogs. Blogs, for the most part, are personal observations about one’s life and experiences. Thus non-fiction. I don’t write non-fiction.
A website is a must have. I should be better about updating mine. My personal blog is woefully neglected. In fact, I intend very soon to change the “Blog” tab/page to “News.” It would more accurately reflect the way I post. And blogging once a month for our cooperative YA Outside the Lines site is a better outreach.
Facebook, for me, is a way to connect with friends and family. I now only initiate a friend request with individuals I’ve met personally. I do accept friend requests from readers/fans. Quite frankly, my posts are pretty benign. Lately, my high-school age sons have been the stars of my news feed with spring’s busy calendar of  prom, tennis season, and now graduation. When my books were releasing, I did include some news of events, etc. Not as much as other authors do, however.
Facebook fan page. I have one. I do not update it often. And I have mixed feelings about it in general. I was advised that teens prefer to “like” a page rather than have a reciprocal relationship with an author. This made sense. Some teens are candid and brash in their posts. They don’t necessarily want an adult eavesdropping. I can therefore see how a separate, one-way page could work. I never did actively promote mine, however. If it were a simple process, I’d probably dissolve it. It’s on my to-do list. That said, it’s a long list.
Now Twitter I kind of like. It’s fast. Mindless. My Twitter followers are an entirely different crowd than my Facebook friends, so I don’t feel like there’s much repetition between the two. I often tweet about professional tennis, Survivor, local events, other authors, or something that comes up in the news. I generally follow back other book people. I’m @wendydelsol if you want to chat about the French Open. Andy Murray’s injured and likely out. Bummer. He’s my second fave, behind Federer, of course.
Linked In. I’m officially Linked out now. Didn’t understand its value. I spent more time endorsing other people than anything else. I’m out with a big cleansing sigh of relief.
Google Plus. I may have half a circle floating out there somewhere in the ether. This one’s not worth the time it would take to opt out.
Pinterest, Instagram, and the rest…I politely decline.
So there it is, my tiny tour of the social-media world. There’s a commercial out there (for Toyota Venza, I’m pretty sure) in which a twenty-something woman reflects how sad it is that her parents have so few Facebook friends. Meanwhile, they’re out on some adventure while she’s alone at her computer. That spot is both funny and wise. As a writer, I find it particularly meaningful. Writing novels is a solitary endeavor, one I enjoy immensely. It is, thus, how my computer time is best spent. The rest of my day is allocated to research, aka eavesdropping on life.

6 comments:

  1. I do like blogging, but I'm not on the other social networking sites. I'm afraid that if I set up my own Twitter page I'll start sleeping with my cell phone under my pillow so that I can Tweet in the middle of the night. I think it's perfectly fine to just update your website with news; that's what a lot of authors do, so they can spend more time writing.

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  2. I agree, Wendy. Social media is a time suck. Keeping up with everything out there would leave me with no time for writing. I enjoy Facebook but rarely post except to comment. My tweeting is almost nonexistent. I'm still on LinkedIn, but not sure why. What's important is writing.

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  3. I hope Nadal will be playing at Roland Garros this year--have missed him in the past few major tournaments!

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  4. I love that Toyota ad, too, Wendy...

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  5. Thanks, everyone, for the comments. Took me a few days to get to them because I had a busy weekend of that research I was talking about :)

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