Tag Archives | how to use twitter

How to be effective on Twitter – and a game!

It seems like the number of writers considering self-publishing an e-book is rising. And the number of writers following me on Twitter with a self-published book is rising too.

That’s wonderful. I don’t mind at all. Nice to meet you. I absolutely love that this opportunity is available for writers.

But please don’t send me an automated DM that says, ‘welcome and check out my book.’

Don’t start spamming the Twitterverse with links to your book – not if that’s the only thing you tweet about. Seriously. That won’t encourage me to buy your book at all.  And if you do it too much, I’ll unfollow you. Enough is enough.

Don’t keep linking reviews of your book every hour, announcing where you are on the ranking list because I don’t care.  #itsnothingpersonal #really

But I do care about you. I want to get to know you. Your personality. What do you blog about? I might check it out if it seems interesting. Tweet about a funny thing that happened to you. Interact with people. Comment on their blogs. Encourage them. Promote others. Retweet people.

Then I might be interested in your book and your rankings.

Twitter is not all about YOU. Or your book.  #sorry  #truthhurts

That being said, Heather Kelly created a fun new Twitter game. Right now, it’s called The Twitter Game.  #sooriginal We use different fun hashtags and anyone and everyone can join in. If you belong to Tweetdeck, you can click on the hashtag and create a column just for that hashtag. So you won’t miss any of the tweets. Here’s Heather’s original post introducing the game.

It’s a great icebreaker. People will see you and get to know you. And maybe follow you. But don’t do it just to sell your book or promote your blog. Do it to have fun and meet people. Because in this crazy journey to publishing filled with rejection we all need to laugh.

So join in the fun. Last week one hashtag was: #thingsiletmykidsdosoicanwrite

Today’s game and hashtag is #badquerytips

See you in the Twitterverse! And have fun!

How to survive Twitter – part oneHow to survive Twitter – part two , Must-know Twitter hashtags

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How to Survive Twitter – part two

Twitter tips for the published/agented author:

  1. Feel free to interact with agents – they might even follow you back.
  2. Encourage other writers.
  3. Remember the peons because you used to be one.
  4. Congratulate book deals and beautiful covers.
  5. Let other authors know you loved their book.
  6. #FF is great but don’t clog Twitter with 20 tweets filled with them.
  7. Don’t be obnoxious and talk about your published stuff all the time.
  8. The more famous you are, the stranger you can be and the more random stuff you can share and readers will still be interested (usually).
  9. Get too strange and random and you might lose readers.
  10. Participate in kidlitchat and yalitchat because potential readers are lurking.
  11. Follow the peons back – they’re your audience.
  12. Talk about “sekrit” projects (and you must spell it this way).
  13. It’s not about how many followers you have, but how you connect with your followers.
  14. Talk about eating chocolate even if you don’t.

Twitter tips for the aspiring writer:

  1. Readers aren’t really interested in the mundane things of your life (but you can share them if you want to).
  2. Don’t try to break into the inner circle (and if you don’t know what I’m talking about then you haven’t been on Twitter or blogging long enough).
  3. Encourage other writers.
  4. Congratulate book deals and beautiful covers.
  5. Let authors know you loved their book (if it’s true).
  6. Communicating with agents all the time looks like you’re trying too hard.
  7. Don’t talk about “sekrit” projects – no one cares.
  8. At some point you should start interacting with other writers. Start with fellow bloggers and comment on their blogs.
  9. #FF is great but don’t clog Twitter with 20 posts.
  10. Link to blog posts that are helpful or funny.
  11. Treat others the way you want to be treated.
  12. Social media is not middle school. Do we really want to go back? Just write your best and be yourself.
  13. It’s not about how many followers you have but how you connect with your followers.
  14. Talk about eating chocolate even if you don’t.

I’m sure there are lots of other tips. Help me out here in the comments!

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How to survive Twitter – Part One

I’d like to say I joined Twitter all in the name of branding and self-promotion – but I didn’t. I joined so I could tweet about contests and get the extra point dang it. I’m still not sure if helped me win contests – probably not.

Stages of Twittering:

Totally grounded and lurking:

  • Lurking – you follow agents, published authors, and editors and swallow their tweets whole.
  • You find fellow bloggers and still lurk.
  • You tweet your new blog posts.
  • You might possibly feel confused, think Twitter is stupid and quit.

Preparing for take-off:

  • You dare to @reply to bloggers you know.
  • You congratulate friends or strangers on word counts or other good news.
  • You tweet helpful or funny blog posts you read.


  • You lurk on kidlitchat or yalitchat and eventually participate.
  • You experiment with hashtags. #queries #amwriting
  • You participate in #FF (Follow Friday) #WW (writer Wednesday), #MM (not sure what it stands for yet.)
  • You realize using Tweetdeck makes Twitter easier to manage.


  • Friends start to tweet your posts.
  • You realize that a lot of tweets are really dumb and promise yourself not to write things like that (even though you probably do).
  • You make new friends and comment on their blogs.
  • You figure out that to get to the individual tweet you click on the time stamp.
  • You write a blog post about using Twitter.

Benefits of Twitter

  • Researching agents or promoting your book.
  • Building up your blog following.
  • Finding encouragement that others are in the same place as you.
  • Finding new authors, helpful blog posts, contests, book recommendations.
  • Making new online friends.
  • Developing the friendships you’ve already made through blogging.
  • Research – ask questions and hopefully receive answers.

Negatives to Twitter

  • Spending time on twitter rather than writing.
  • Using the success stories as further proof that your writing sucks.
  • Stalking people and responding inappropriately.
  • Allowing it to rule your life (at this point you should take a break).

What stage are you at? Did I miss any stages?

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Navigating social media – the right way!

The first time I went to the NESCBWI conference I felt like a total dork.

I hadn’t started blogging, so I didn’t have any blogging friends to meet. My current critique groups hadn’t formed, so I didn’t have them to meet, even though they were there. I knew one person somewhat well and was just thankful she let me sit with her at lunch. But I survived.

And this year it was so much better. I knew people. And I got to know even more. I’ve never felt so connected with other writers and it truly makes me appreciate all of them. Writers truly are a group of very giving people.

So many conference goers have blogged about the NESCBWI conference. They’ve included quotes and some sage advice. I have to be honest. There were too many good quotes for me to quote. This would be a 5,000 word post. Or longer!

Today, I want to focus on one workshop. It was all about social media tips and techniques for using Twitter, Facebook, blogs…etc.

Mitali Perkins and Deborah Sloan co-taught the workshop. They knew what they were talking about. So if you’re confused about Twitter or not sure how to use it, or if you’ve crossed Facebook off your list – think again!

Here is the link to Mitali’s blog where she has made accessible the hand outs from the workshop. And she’s included a bunch of other helpful links. Check it out.

Thanks Mitalie and Deborah for sharing your wisdom!

To my readers, how do you feel about Twitter? Facebook? What are your questions about social media? (not that I can answer them)

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