Should writers use social media? Will avoiding social media spell certain doom for budding writing careers? Or should writers consider keeping their distance from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the like?
Full confession: I've been using social media for a while. Like I "met my wife online back in the days of MySpace" a while. So there was a time when I would answer the question above with an authoritative, "Yes! You must use social media. It's essential to connecting with your audience (and finding true love)."
Don't get me wrong: I'm still glad I used (and continue to use) social media. But time has shown me that social media is not for everyone. It has also shown me that one platform (let's say Facebook) can work for one writer but not another, but that other writer may really connect with Instagram (or YouTube).
Social media is a large part of our world today—and is thriving and growing by the minute. It’s important to know how to use social media for writers, everything from the basics to how it can benefit your career. Discover how to use social media to your advantage in this Social Media 101 workshop.
Should Writers Use Social Media?
I believe wholeheartedly that all writers should try out social media to see if it works for them. Because it's honestly one of the easiest ways to connect with other writers, editors, agents, and readers. Maybe start off with Twitter, because you can start off just following other folks before dipping your toes into the waters of tweeting.
Then, give Instagram or Facebook a try. There's a chance you find value in one (or more) of these platforms and that it helps your writing goals. But if you find yourself struggling to "make social media work for you," then maybe it's not a good fit. And that's okay.
After all, social media is not all sunshine and book deals. These sites are meant to grab your attention and hold it forever. I mean, why do you think they invented infinite scrolling? This, of course, presents a danger to writers and their precious writing time.
So yes, I endorse social media for writers. But I also endorse writers knowing when social media isn't right for them...or when it's not right for them right now. Please try the various platforms out, but be aware of whether it's helping you write and get published—or if it's distracting you from your goals.