5 Social Media Lessons Learned

Okay, so last week I whined about being Alone in the Publishing Wilderness. As a writer, I didn’t want to have to do everything (marketing, blogging, facebook/twitter/etcetera) all the time (I still don’t).  And I got a lot of response from others feeling pressured, and overwhelmed, by all that goes with publishing. As I’m ramping up for the release this year of my second novel, I’d really like to get this whole writer-marketer thing down to where I’m comfortable with it.

In the past week, I’ve learned five important lessons about the publishing world, and myself, that I thought I’d share.

1. I don’t want to be a publishing dinosaur. As much as I’d love to hide in my cave and just write, I tried that. Didn’t work. (Well…I got a lot written, but slowly – it was the beginning of my career, what can I say? I didn’t work HARD enough.) Now I’ve got a day job, learning new stuff – I can and will learn the new publishing stuff, too. It’ll keep me nimble, lol.

2. Reading others’ blog posts informs me, broadens my horizons, and gives me a few chuckles. The mere act of reading someone else’s thoughts gives me more opportunity to empathize (or get angry on behalf of – depending), strengthening the human connection. Gives me food for thought and conversation with the family and the boss. (Good conversation is RARE!!!) Plus  anyone that provides belly laughs is my friend for life. And you never know where the germ of a story idea will come from.

3. I am not Alone – I am a Modern Author/Warrior. Kristen Lamb’s latest post finally explains it to  me to where it’s palatable. I’m really looking forward to the nify armor! Plus she and the other MyWANA teams totally rock, and I keep forgetting to keep them at the front of my mind. If you’ve noticed the #MyWANA hashtag, or all the derivatives, but haven’t understood it, see her video for a full explanation here

4. More Blogging is a Good Thing.  Just like More Cowbell (my new favorite blog). I enjoy blogging, I like talking about wines and recipes and every now and then, my writing. Kristen Lamb tells us to set aside time to do our blog posts in advance  and schedule them accordingly…well, yeah, okay, I can work on getting organized. (Kristen also says that if we make our bed every day, that it will eventually lead to a clean house. Haven’t noticed that one working yet…) 

Maybe I’ll start having guest posts once a week. Takes some pressure off, you know? Plus, after reading this fascinating article about 12 blogging mistakes from the guys at SEO MOZ, Irealized that perhaps search engine optimization IS something I need to learn.

5. Content is Still King.  Whether you’re writing a novel, short story, blog post or grocery list, content is still king. The only thing that’s better than strong, solid content is LOTS of it. (Hence more blog posts. And the masked guy in the corner, fingering his whip every time I stop typing on my latest manuscript, lol.) I read Bob Mayer’s post this week on the secret handshake of successful digital publishing – and it restored my faith in content.

Other places to go for more inspiration:

Bob Mayer’s post on Platform, Product, Promotion is something every writer needs to read.

JA Konrath provides thought-provoking tidbits on A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing, and his latest post is one of my favorites.

Piper Bayard and her partner, Holmes, always have interesting (and funny) stuff to pass on to us real people. Love this post on the Guinea Pig Diaries!

On a General Writing Note: I LOVE Savvy Authors.  It’s a free site (they also have a paid site) and the posts are always informative, no matter where you are in your writing career.

So, that’s what I’ve learned this past week. What are some of your favorite blogs to visit for inspiration, or a chuckle? I’d love to know! Please feel free to include the link in your comment so I can check them out!

 

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23 Responses to 5 Social Media Lessons Learned

  1. Brinda says:

    You have some great websites in your list. I also love Savvy. I try to tell all my writer friends about it.

  2. Lisa Kessler says:

    Hi Christine! *waving*

    I love Bitten By Books for great reviews and big author giveaways.

    I also love Castles & Guns where a few of us have banded together to try to post informative/fun blogs to get everyone talking…

    There are also some super reader blogs that I love like, I Smell Sheep, Book Monster Reviews, My Bookish Ways & Vamp Book Club…. Great places to visit! 🙂

    Good luck with the upcoming release!

    Lisa 🙂

  3. Hi, Lisa! Thanks for stopping by! I’m familiar with Bitten By Books and Castles and Guns…will definitely check out the others you’ve listed. Thanks!

  4. Robena Grant says:

    I loved this post, Christine, and thanks for the links. I had fun browsing.
    Some of my favorites, and all for different reasons, are:

    http://terribleminds.com
    Chuck Wendig has a potty mouth but an unbelievable way with words and his humor both shocks me and makes me laugh out loud, but I always learn something about writing from him.

    http://www.arghink.com
    Jenny Crusie is fabulous about sharing the craft of writing.

    http://writeitforward.wordpress.com
    Bob Mayer is great for industry insights.

    http://www.BettyVerse.com
    This brings up posts by a lot of diverse writers, some published, some not, and makes me think.

    One last one, and I don’t have the addy right in front of me, but it’s hyperbole and a half, and it is hysterical. Great writing. always makes me laugh.

    • I, too love Chuck Wendig – he’s always good for a laugh amongst his wisdom. I’ll definitely follow Jennie, and I often pop in on the Bettys… Thanks, Roben!

  5. Traci Bell says:

    Hi Christine,

    You’ve listed great sites for inspiration. I also try to pay attention to blogs that don’t have anything to do with writing, to learn from them as well. My favorites are when they share stories of their day to day lives in funny ways that I can relate with.

  6. YOu just made my chest go tight again. Who has time to read all those blogs, do the marketing necessary, write the next book, editing the one from the editor, take time to relax and reboot, then market more?

    I need your wine blog right now!

    • Oh damn, Lynne! Sorry about that. I know, there isn’t time enough. But that’s partly why I subscribe to blogs – when I get the blog in the email, I can see if I want/need to read it, and I do…or I don’t, depending.

      Sometimes those blogs are what kick my fanny into gear, you know? But – it ALWAYS goes back to – do what you are comfortable with. (I am STRIVING to be comfortable with all this!)

  7. Jenny Hansen says:

    Christine, I am so very honored with your mention! You’ve learned fantastic stuff this week. Plus, I love all the blogs mentioned here in your comments, although I haven’t been to BettyVerse.

    I love visiting TawnaFenske, The Bloggess and Natalie Hartford as well. All are well worth reading, as is Roni Loren’s and Piper Bayard’s blogs.

    That ought to keep you busy at LEAST through next week, eh?

    • Christine says:

      Argh, Jenny! No more, no more, lol! I’ll definitely check out Tawna Fenske – I think I’m already following Natalie (new follower); haven’t heard about The Bloggess, but I’ll check it out! Thanks, hon – hope you’re feeling better!

  8. Dee J. says:

    Christine,

    Great list! I wish I visited more blogs. I’m still trying to train myself to post. It’s fascinating how the writing time disappears when you’re working on the rest of it, ya know? Like, now, it’s after 4 and I still haven’t worked on my WIP today. Need to do that NOW! LOL.

    • Christine says:

      My biggest secret about following blogs, is subscribing to blogs. That’s it. I don’t have to think – the post gets sent to my inbox. Easy peasy!

      Now go work, woman!!!

  9. Blogging is one of my favorite promo past times. I subscribe to lots and read them with google reader via Flipboard. If you have an iPad definitely check out the Flipboard app. I read my tweets and Facebook via this too.

    A new find for me is author Roni Loren’s blog. It’s both entertaining and informative.

    • Christine says:

      Ah, Shelley. There’s the rub. A lot of times, I think I lose my “entertaining and informative” edge whenever I think of blogging – I shall definitely have to catch up with Roni. Hopefully some of her magic will rub off on me, lol!

      And great advice with Flipboard! I don’t have an iPad yet but…Does anyone else use Flipboard?

  10. Charlene says:

    Great stuff here, Christine! My head is swimming with all the tidbits to look up now. I FB’d it too!!

  11. Mac Crowne says:

    Great info for a newbie, still taking baby steps, freaked out at all there is to learn. Thanks Christine.

  12. Fantastic post Christine and fabulous lessons to learn. Here’s to finding the balance that works for you! 🙂

  13. Maria says:

    Tweeted your post – and then went and grabbed lunch to try and calm down from all of the must read’s and must do’s of life. I will get to it all but right now, I am just hanging where I am. I am okay with that.

  14. Hugs, Maria! Yes, you will get overwhelmed. No, you can’t do it all, nor will you want to. Yes, some days will be easier to ride the information wave than others. It’s definitely a getting-used-to-it process, and then weeding down what you don’t want to do. If that makes sense.

    I’m working on all of this being something I WANT to do – if that makes sense, lol!

  15. Debra Kristi says:

    Super list! I’m in the process of moving everyone over to Google Reader myself. Looks like it might be the way to go. {hugs} We’ll help each other find that balance.

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