As some of you know, I’m president of Derby Rotten Scoundrels, a chapter of a mystery writing organization, Sisters in Crime. One of our goals has been to expand our social media presence to attract new members. The other day, the newly installed group’s publicist inquired as to whether I was on Twitter.
“Well, sure,” I told her. “I try to go on Twitter and Facebook at least once a week.”
“Once a week,” she scoffed. “That’s like not being on there at all. Think of what you’ve probably missed just in the last hour.”
“I guess it’s about choices,” I said. And it really is. We writers are constantly exhorted to build our social media platforms and spend time increasing our online presence and visibility. It’s important. I agree, but I think we have to make choices about how we spend our time and what feels most salient and meaningful to us.
I’m a slow writer and for me to be productive, making time to write is a priority. And if it’s a choice between writing and spending hours on Twitter, well, I take responsibility for choosing to write. Am I harming my writing career? Selling fewer books? Quite possibly, although I did take the proactive step this past year of hiring a publicist. I truly know this stuff is important. And I also know I’d rather be writing.
That doesn’t mean that’s all I do—far from it! I try to swim for exercise several times a week. I love playing the piano. My volunteer work with my mystery writing group and as a volunteer comprehensive sexuality educator matters to me. Like all writers, I love to read. Most of all, spending time with my dear husband and loved ones is vitally important to me.
So, I’ll cop to being a less than fully dedicated author when it comes to social media. I admit to being envious of writers who enjoy spending hours online and are darned good at it. I just think we all have to choose what matters most to us and use our time intentionally.
Back to writing!