How Twitter Is Helpful for Aspiring Writers

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At this weekend's Editors' Intensive, Alice Pope & I were trying to explain how Twitter works and how it can be helpful for writers.

There were many skeptics in the audience. So I posed the question to my friends/followers on Twitter: How has Twitter helped you as a writer?

I love the responses I received, so I'm sharing with all. Thank you for your generous tips—and if you have more to say beyond 140 characters, you have the comments to elaborate!

Twitter's let me meet writers, editors, & agents I might not have,
& helped me understand all aspects of the business better.
@littlefluffycat

Contacts, sources and community - it's a digital moveable feast
@FictionMatters

I've met editors, agents, big authors, up & coming authors, spread the word about my blog, made wonderful friends!
@RachelJameson

The connection/interaction to other writers, editors, even agents has been hugely enlightening.
@jdistraction

Twitter helped me meet ppl I wouldn't have had access to otherwise. Casual format makes asking questions less intimidating.
@RocchiJulia

Twitter has helped me connect with other writers like me. We encourage each other--writing is no longer a lonely occupation.
@TboneJenkins

Twitter has helped me learn more about specific agents and enabled me to make a better decision on if they're right for me.
@HeatherMcCorkle

Twitter also keeps me updated on the writing industry & has helped me meet great writers I wouldn't have otherwise met.
@HeatherMcCorkle

Met many writers and authors I never would have met on Twitter.
@lafreya1

How has Twitter helped? Connected to writers, pubs, opportunities, promotion - gotten more readers on blog, my novel, etc
@tericoyne

Twitter helped me find an excellent guide in southern Austria on a research trip for my next historical novel.
@KarenEssex

Twitter helps me observe the minds of literary agents! I've discovered those not living in New York are almost normal, almost!
@kenkanten

Inspiration: microfiction and poetry at my fingertips, showing how much can be conveyed in 25 words.
@amgamble

Networking in a telecommuting industry. Editing for concise: make cuts and preserve meaning. Best clipping service ever.
@amgamble

Writing community with support and very imp. info re: today's publishing world.
@jessrosenbooks

Twitter gives affirmation of what I know and information about what I don't. Networking allows pub. & unpub. to come together.
@jessrosenbooks

I agree with everything @jessrosenbooks says about writers &
twitter. Support, info & encouragement is incredible, even for a
rookie :)

@CafeNirvana

I am learning a lot from twitter friends and people who share info through twitter. And I'm getting to know fantastic people.
@mariblaser

Twitter has taught me about platforms, promotion, community, and audience.
@alittlesandy

I've had hot scoops from tweeters in other countries, I've met ace journos i never would have otherwise ... I've been filming a Lisbon city guide using nothing more than my phone, mostly twitter, no printed research, guides etc.
@UKtraveleditor

Twitter helps me connect with fellow writers in a fun and collegiate way
@Debs1

Networking, research, discovering new
things, calling attn to my blog has been ESSENTIAL to my work flow.
@jenzug

Learned of an online auction, bid for crit from my dream editor, won, got crit & a request for full!
@AuntBirdseed

Still learning Twitter, but like the opportunity to follow info on specific subjects from lots of sources in one place.
@meredithrmorgan

From @DavidRozansky:

I have acquired more than a dozen potential new authors for our house via Twitter pitches.

Linking to articles via Twitter has increased blog traffic by 900%.

Twitter keeps tabs on rival publishing houses & client bookstores.

By following industry experts, knowledge of books industry grows exponentially.

Links to books on Twitter results in increased book sales.

I've built platform of 2,600 Twitter followers in only 5 months, no gimmicks.

I run #scifichat, a weekly scifi books group discussion, Fri. 2-4 pm.

Twitter gives me ideas for books and marketing before competition.

Through Twitter, I am first to learn of trends and news in the books industry.

The best thing-I make friends with fab people in the industry, like yourself!

Leave your tips and thoughts in the comments!

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