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I Keep My Promises. Sort Of

December 9, 2011

So I joined Twitter a little over two years ago after a life-changing night when I read Twitterville by Shel Israel.

I said to myself: Self, what are you thinking?? You must be on Twitter NOW!!!

Now in fairness, I’d been telling my authors that for years, along with blogging and Facebook, etc., but it was always followed by an “even though I have no idea what any of those things are” kind of vague disclaimer.

But all of a sudden I saw the light. I absolutely had to get on Twitter to promote my clients’ books!

Now one of my big takeaways from Shel’s book, and there were several, was about developing a personality on Twitter. He commented something about how when you go to a business lunch, you don’t sit down and jump right to business. You ask about family, how was your vacation, so on and so forth.

So I realized that if I just got on Twitter and started shouting at people to buy my clients’ books (which was really what I sort of wanted to do), it probably wouldn’t get me very far. So fine. Personality, check. I’m not sure that what I did was totally what he had in mind, but I adapted it a little for my own purposes.

Well pretty quickly I realized that Twitter was invented for me. Hey, if Al Gore can say he invented the internet, I can say Twitter was invented for me. It was perfect for me!!

I never wanted to blog. It seemed so time consuming. But Twitter, oh my lovely Twitter. Twitter was perfect for me. I work by myself and spend a lot of time with my own thoughts. All of a sudden I had a place where I could share them.

I don’t even think I totally understood who was seeing them in those early days. Thoughts would come into my brain and go out my fingertips into the twittersphere (I think it, I tweet it). And then omg someone would respond!! It was like having voices in my head responding, but it was other people!! So I wasn’t crazy!! Crazy, right?!? I LOVED IT!!

Actually, to say I loved it would be a gross understatement. I was literally insane with love. I developed something of a rhythm that settled into a mix of agenting/publishing related tweets, personal/family tweets (the ongoing antics of 6yo and 3yo (who started as 4yo and 1yo)), and then some reserved just for the crazy.

That final piece was where I’d just go really off the wall—mostly not on purpose, but somehow it would just happen. Perhaps future blog posts will explain the origins of some of the late great hashtags, with the all-time favorite, of course, being #hidontrun.

But so I learned how to use hashtags effectively and some of my favorites, especially from the early years were #hidontrun, #tweetupsalon, #scarychef, #queryquotes, #crazyeyes, #pocononos, #boonybin, #NEMesis, and #NannyBedelia, among others.

And as my authors sold books or came out with books, I tweeted the heck out of those, and I found some amazing things happening. People responding to me telling me they loved this book or that one. Asking questions about when another book was coming out. Telling me they bought XYZ book as a gift. I’ve also gotten calls and emails and tweets from reporters saying they’ve been following me on Twitter and now they want to do a story on one of my authors. Or another. And so on and so on.

So what is my point?

Yes, I got onto Twitter with the hopes of helping even a little bit in the marketing my authors, but if I weren’t having fun on Twitter, I don’t think I would be any help at all.

When I started this blog, it was because I had some BIG NEWS coming along. And lo and behold, turns out I thought blogging was pretty fun too. All of a sudden I had more room to tell my incredibly long stories and I didn’t have to tweet bomb the entire Twitterverse. I decided I’d post when I had something good to say, and it was fun!!

I think it’s pretty clear by now that at least part of the BIG NEWS is that I have a couple of authors who are hooked up with Coliloquy. And I am very excited about what Coliloquy is doing.

When I committed to blogging every day this week, I thought Coliloquy would be doing this thing that they will be doing this week, but they aren’t. And I learned that blogging every day is not fun.

I will never be a daily blogger. I hate daily blogging.

I am keeping my promise to a post every day this week, but not my promise for a funny inside story from the months of working with Coliloquy. Those will come. But they will come when I feel like telling them. When it’s fun.

And then I’ll tweet the hell out of it so you’ll run over to read it.

And in the meantime, did you hear that I got the ARCs for ENDLESSLY?!?! Maybe now that I have a blog, I’ll do a giveaway. Guess you’ll have to keep running over here when I tweet BLOG POST!!!

Thanks for reading. Can’t wait to keep sharing ALL the big news with you in 2012.

Or, you know, before then if there is any.

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14 Comments
  1. Congrats! You made it all the way through the week. 🙂

  2. You survived the week!!! You were made for twitter, but your blog posts rock too. And queen of the #hashtags… you forgot #fauxshaq! :o)

  3. Patrick Alan permalink

    Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders – The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” – but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never attempt to blog every day!”

    • Nicely done.
      Of course, while you’re busy laughing your head off at me, you’re about to die, and I’ll go on to save the kingdom…:-)

  4. Okay, so that’s a real book. I actually had to click on it to make sure. For a minute I thought you were making a joke.

    Yes, I never blog every day. Never have, never will. But I actually thought you pulled it off very well. But you’re right, if it’s not fun, it’s not worth it. If you’re not having fun, eventually your readers won’t either. So good call on knowing yourself and stuff. 🙂

  5. I had a great Time Sink offer to become involved in blogging, tweeting *and* hula dancing – a 3-in-1 package which came with a free silly hat.

    Some days it pays to be sensible and stick to the blogging and tweeting…

    • Or the lulling to sleep package you offered yesterday. I’ll take option c. Although hula dancing…could be fun!!!

  6. Hi Michelle!

    Since you’ve been trespassing inside my head, I think it’s only fair that I respond to your great post with a question.

    I started blogging back in April of this year, and in no time was caught up in the time-consuming aspects of maintaining what I thought was a necessary evil for new writers. You know, platform, marketing, yada yada. I soon succumbed to blogfestation and a severe case of loss-of-manuscripttimeitis.

    Then I found Twitter. Holy halftime! 140 characters? A venue where I could put up random thoughts, follow interesting people, and go for days or weeks without being missed?

    What is your take on blogging vs. Twitter for the new writer/aspiring author? This post gives incredible and valuable insight into the dilemma from an agent’s point-of-view. Too much to ask for a future post that might address my question?

    Cuz, ya know, this inquiring mind wants to know. 🙂
    Thanks.

    • Hey Bryce,
      Thanks for reading! And for commenting. I love comments.

      I think the most important thing is to write the absolute best manuscript you can. Without that, you’ve basically got nothing. And a huge blog following or twitter following doesn’t mean much.

      But it’s true that there is an ever greater responsibility placed on authors to do marketing themselves. And blogging and twitter are both useful tools for that.

      In my opinion, twitter is a FABULOUS place to help build an audience that you can PUSH to your blog. I think it is incredibly difficult to builld a blog following these days just by blogging. I don’t think it’s interactive enough. And how will people find you?

      But I think twitter provides you with a place to go out and find the people you want to reach. Start conversations with them. Build an audience on your own time and over time. And then when you have something big to say, bigger than 140 characters, you can tweet the heck out of it, as mentioned above, and send them over to your blog. Hopefully some will follow you there.

      I think twitter is a great resource for building an audience these days, ideally in conjunction with a blog. But you have to enjoy it and you have to keep your eye on the goal. Don’t let these things distract you from your main task, if that’s writing.

      If it’s wasting time, then you’re all set. 🙂

  7. Speaking of time, I’d like to thank YOU for sacrificing yours to offer advice. It’s always great to get a viewpoint from the other side of the fence.
    This was extremely helpful!

    Best-

  8. So, I clicked on your Coliloquy link to find out what on earth it is, and I got to the site which has absolutely ZERO info, and yet I am so INTRIGUED that I typed my email address into the “Sign up now!” box, and then I got an email and WHAT?! That email is such a tease! It’s like, “Hey, we’re the next big thing ever, we’ll keep you posted!” And I’m just like, “BUT WHAT ARE YOU?!” So now I am waiting in anticipation for the big reveal. The end. 🙂

  9. mommywritervkent permalink

    Its great to see another agent sharing their experiences and feelings about what they go through on a daily basis in this business. Hope to keep in touch with you. Im following you on twitter as well, so look forward to what you have to say.

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