Tuesday, January 4, 2011

What Can I Say on Facebook?

Okay, here’s the thing. I know social networking is the wave of the future. I know we writers need to get our names out there as much as we can: on Facebook, Linked In, Goodreads, Twitter, etc.

Personally, however, I’m a bit frustrated.

How can I promote myself (in a positive sense, that is) if I have to censor myself? As a writer, I have a problem with that. On the other hand, as a business person I absolutely see the need.

Unfortunately, I’ve got a Push Me-Pull You thing going on inside.

What do I do when someone I don’t care for asks me to befriend them or “like” their fan page? Do I tell them the truth: No way in hell! or do I prostitute myself and be a hypocrite?

I also have to consider that if I “like” the other person’s page, maybe they’ll “like” mine. Maybe they’ll buy one of my books. Maybe one of the people who “likes” them will “like” me.

Okay, not very likely. But still, what if?

Another thing that frustrates me is when one of my FB “friends” posts forty-seven times in three hours. I don’t really care that her cat barfed on the bed, that she heard her favorite Aerosmith song on the radio today—not once, but TWICE, or that she plans to have lasagna for supper.

True, maybe other people DO care about those things. After all, if my granddaughter posts that stuff, I read it. But still…

And although I don’t want to give anyone the false impression that I lack confidence, I’m a bit leery of posting too much stuff about ME. After all, I want people to like me, buy my books, and spread the word. But cripes, they can’t really want to know what my favorite color is, when I last went potty, or who I’m going to vote for in the next election. Can they?

So, people, help me out here. How much is too much? What kinds of things do you WANT to see on Facebook?


  1. Sorry, Linda, I can't help. The reason? You've just articulated exactly the way I (and I suspect many thousands of others) feel about the whole social networking phenomenon. Do we sell more books as a result of being in those loops? Maybe a few. Is it worth the time we spend there? Pass (but probably not). On the other hand, some genuine contacts come out of it - contacts across continents - which would never have happened otherwise. In the end, the reality is that, as writers, we have to do everything we can to maintain a profile. But, but, but ...

  2. I would rather read about your books and craft of writing. I am not interested in personal information, like your favorite song or what you are cooking for dinner, but I do like to hear about why you developed a section in your book and what was your inspiration and I would like to know about how you went about getting your book published and when did you know you had a product of interest to readers.

  3. Thank you, Anonymous, for sharing. And, because you're interested in stuff I'm interested in sharing: a) the opening of my mystery was generated by a "what if?" moment when I was walking my dogs, b) I researched the marketplace and publishers and sent my book to those I thought would be a good fit, and c) as a writer, you never know for sure you have a product of interest until people buy it ... however, a publisher excited about buying was a good indicator.