Monday, June 6, 2011

Say Anything! Social Media and Authors

It's summer time! Quite warm and beautiful here in Saint Louis. My children are off from school for the summer and now we have the activity filled days ahead while I'm writing my second book, KEPT. In a few weeks, I'll be escaping, I mean heading to New York City for the Romance Writers of America National Conference. It will be my first time in New York so I'm so excited.

This past weekend, I was one of three speakers for an event held by the Saint Louis Author's Guild. We talked about how authors can use their websites and social media like Twitter, Facebook, and blogs to reach out to our audience. It was a blast! I was the technical part of the demonstration and I won't go into details since you most likely prefer to stay awake right now. In a nutshell, there are some really cool ways to make your blog or website do the work for you if you have the right tools. I've posted my presentation to my website if you'd like to see it. (PDF file)

For me, Twitter and Facebook is a great way for me to learn about other writers. What are they currently working on? What events are they attending? Can I be a fan girl and make to a particular signing? That kind of thing. But it's also an opportunity for the author to say anything. Nothing crazy, mind you, but a chance for me to see their personal side. It's interesting for me to see their hobbies, links they post to places where they love to shop. (And so of the links have been pure evil to see the pretty clothes...) They also post when they finish a book (yay!) or when they've been run over by their current deadline (ouch!). All in all, it's like connecting with a good friend.

So here's my list of some of my favorite authors that I love to follow on Twitter. Why? They let me know which book they're working on. What dish they're cooking for dinner. It's a fun way to distract me from the sad thing I'm cooking for dinner... (And believe me, I'm not telling Twitter about my oh-so-exciting Hamburger Helper nights...) ;)

Laurell K. Hamilton
- LKHamilton
Yasmine Galenorn - YasmineGalenorn
Alyssa Day - alyssa_day
Jackie Kessler - JackieKessler
Michelle Rowen - michellerowen
Anne Rice - annericeauthor

And that's just a sample of the people that I check out. There are so many more! Especially when they retweet something from someone they follow!

And hey, why not check out the Wicked Authors bloggers on Twitter as well. I promise to be snarky and only talk about the nights I do something snazzy like take over the world or conquer the planet Mars.

Angie Fox
- angiefoxauthor
Shawntelle Madison
- shawntelle
Stephanie Rowe - StephanieT1

You can find Shirley on Facebook and Casey as well! Connect with them there.

Are you on Twitter or Facebook? Do you have some favorite authors who give you a good laugh once in a while? Please share!


SandyG265 said...

I'm not on Twitter but I follow Lilith Saintcrow, Lynsay Sands and Kelly mcCullough on Facebook.

Casey said...

Notice my name does not appear on Shawnetelle's list. Twitter? I just don't get it. Facebook, I'm on there (stop by and say hi), but quite honestly, I think it's mostly a time sink. I check in maybe once a day . . . maybe . . . and Shawntelle is right, it's nice to see what people are up to, but . . . Can't imagine some of the people I know who spend hours and hours dabbling on these sites. Don't they have books to write? What's that? Not everyone writes books???

Stephsco said...

I signed up for twitter a long time ago (considering twitter is only like 4 years old) but didn't really use it until I got a smartphone and followed authors and publishing stuff. There's a slight learning curve, but once you get the # <-- hashtags concept of topics, you can really have fun. I think for me, the point of it became more clear once I followed people outside my circle of real-life friends.

Shawntelle Madison said...

Casey's right. Twitter and Facebook have the potential to be big time sucks, but they also are a great way to socialize with both readers and authors alike.

As to whether people spend too much time on Twitter, I think some do, but there are plenty who tweet once in a while and I enjoy their tweets nonetheless.