I’m pretty new to this blogging game and some *okay, a lot* of the sites and thingymebobs everyone talks about make this terrific whooshing sound as they fly right over my head.
To this end, I recently posted on my blog about my complete suckiness at all things to do with the internet and social networking and put out an SOS asking a gazillion stupid questions about what things were, what they were supposed to do and what would they actually do for me.
One of the issues coming out of this was a few authors felt that participating in communities as well as having their own sites was eating up their precious writing time. My automatic response to this was “Well, what the hell are you thinking? Tell ’em to bugger off and go and write already!” Later, though, I started to think more deeply about the online presence authors must feel the need to maintain. I say must deliberately because there is a definite expectation from readers, myself included, authors will have a website or blog or whatever and, in addition to this, they will interact in some way, shape or form with their fans.
Realistically this means in terms of self-promotion and marketing, especially in the epublishing industry, it’s pretty much a given that an author needs to be active online *but NOT an active wanker cos that’s another topic in itself*. By the same token, there is obviously a fine balance between RL, writing and the ‘author persona’.
It’s in relation to this balance that I’m hoping for feedback which may assist authors – no matter at what stage of their careers they may be – in deciding what internet tools will work the best for them.
So, setting aside the squeeing that results whenever an author and a reader connect online, here are some questions to (hopefully) help stimulate your little grey cells:
Readers , do you visit authors’ sites? If so, which ones? Do you prefer websites, blogs, LJ, Facebook, Twitter, whatever? How often do you like to see updates and what do you want in terms of content? Do you read joint author or publishers’ sites? What actually helps – or doesn’t – to promote an author to you?
Authors, what internet tools have actually worked for you? What are the pros and cons associated with these? As important as they are to promote and support the m/m romance genre, how difficult is it to commit time to communities like GLBT Bookshelf or publishers’ blogs for example as well as maintain your own sites? Also, how do you really feel about guest blogging or doing interviews?
I guess the nuts and bolts *nudge, nudge* of what I’m getting at is – what’s the stuff that actually works and what’s the crap that’s just a complete waste of time from both a reader’s and writer’s perspective/s?
From my own POV, although I absolutely ADORE having Sean Kennedy or K Z Snow or Clare London or L B Gregg *such a name dropper ;)* come visit me at my blog and my stalkage of them in return, I’d much prefer them to hurry up and write their next books already. *g*
What do you mean RL?? Forget that! Write! *crack whip* Write!