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Entries in social media (3)


Social media, it's not just for stalking anymore


I just realized that I've had this blog-thing for ten years. That's kinda crazy, especially when you consider that I set up shop a few years before I ever finished, let alone SOLD a book. If you're curious what I was blathering on about in the dark ages, here ya go.

Nowadays, blogs are somewhat passe, especially with the ubiquity of social media (I'm looking at you Facebook). It seems that most of my online interactivity occurs in other venues, and interestingly enough, it's voiced in different ways. Sooooo...with that in mind, here's a thought-map of where I am, and what I'm up to.


Facebook - For those that want to friend me (please do!), I post about my current work-in-progress, travel (personal and book events) and also the regular things normal people post--like my kids' concerts, shoes that my dogs have mangled, and adventures of the Books & Brews Book Club.

Facebook/AuthorPage - Yes, I have an author page. Authors are recommended to do this since a normal FB account maxes out at 5,000 friends, but these so-called fan pages allow for unlimited followers. On my author page I tend to post more authorly things (surprise), like book tour info, tips for writers, and generally stuff germane to readers, book clubs, bookstores, and librarians.

Twitter - I love Twitter. Not sure why. Probably has something to do with my short attention span. On Twitter I tend to post humorous stuff, but also things with an activist bent. Twitter is so immediate and hashtags work so well that it's really the perfect venue to voice opinions on current events. Also, with a limit of 140 characters no one can go bananapants with some political screed. Less, indeed, is more.

Instagram - I'm a believer that IG is best used as a window, not a mirror, so you won't find a gazillion selfies, nor photos of Starbucks cups. Instead it's just weird, "Day-in-the-life" stuff. Enjoy.

Google+ - This is total mystery to me. By that I mean, I have 250,000 followers on G+. THAT'S INSANE, especially when you consider I have about 8,000 Twitter followers and 2,500 Facebook friends. What gives, Google? And there's hardly any activity, but since I have so many followers I feel like I should post something, so this tends to by my own personal click-hole where I post cool links.


I'm also on LinkedIn with a resume that goes all the way back to my paper route in the 6th grade, and I'm on Goodreads, but I don't do much on either venue, though this blog is aggregated to both places.

Which brings me to the big ol' WHAT WILL YOU BE USING THIS VENUE FOR?

I think this blog will become my home for long-winded responses to things in the author world. Stuff comes up that needs a full-explanation, like last year's spat between Hachette and Amazon, or a recent talk given at a major writers conference were authors were discouraged from voiceing opinions (I couldn't disagree more). That kind of thing. But also book updates, travel news, yada yada yada.

Speaking of, I really need to pack for Seattle. Emerald City Comic Con, here I come.


The beautiful madness of social media

(If yesterday's post got you riled up, imagine my reaction when someone within the film industry said that my commentary was total BS and that I was ill-informed. Um...to that kindly gentleman, all I can say is that my quote was V-E-R-B-A-T-I-M. Not sure how much room there was for misinterpretation?)

But, that's the beauty and interactivity of social media, which I love. Probably because I was using it when the online world was more like anti-social media--back in the days of BBS's, Prodigy, Compuserve, AOL, and now Facebook (I completely skipped MySpace because the interface was like a huge quantum leap backwards).

Which leads me to Google+, which was the new hotness last year for all of month. I have 129,089 followers on Google+ as of this posting. That's about 127,000 follower more than I have on Facebook, but my friends/fans/followers on Facebook actually interact with me. Whereas on Google+ I mainly hear the sound of crickets chirping. Which begs the question, who are these "social" followers on Google+?

I'm guessing they're click-farmers, employed by Google in some bizarre fashion to make Google+ seem--what's the word I'm looking for? Alive? Useful? Relevant?

And then on the other side of the ledger we have the official, validated pages of celebrities (like on Twitter) which are undoubtedly run by publicists. So here you have fake people tweeting to fake followers. Which has a zenlike irony about it.

So despite the vagaries of the web (and occasional heckler), I must say that I'm grateful for real people. Even the ones who are occasionally surprised that it's really me.


Instagram: It's not just for photos of your lunch anymore

Are you on Instagram? I love it, but I'm a firm believer that Instagram should be a window not a mirror, so you won't find a lot of selfies. But you will find what I'm up to when I'm not sitting behind a keyboard like I'm doing at this very moment. Here's a recent shot, taken this past Saturday in Glacier National Park.

My hiking buddy, Eric, minding the gap. A very LARGE and precarious gap.