Wild swan: +1916
A lot of people talk about Twitter and plenty of people use it (over 200 million!), but for the uninitiated it might seem like just another time-wasting distraction from your writing that you probably don’t need.
Well, it might be…(everything requires a degree of self-discipline!) but it can also be pretty useful for writers too. Here are some thoughts on why it might be worth a try and some ideas to help you get the most out of it.
This works quite well and I have had the link to my book retweeted by a cricket commentator, two local newspapers, another author and a local radio station.
It is not problem free though, far from it. It depends on what you use it for or rather used it for, when you first started with them. If just for new friends all sending each other updates, you can lose all these very quickly if your posts are suddenly heavily punctuated with links to works where the desired result is a sale. But if this is of on consequence to the author, or they joined Twitter with this specific purpose, then yes, it is a good tool. As for me though, I got tired of being labelled a spammer, so now I just have the fixed link to my books as part of my bio on there.
I find mixing it up works. I occasionally post blog update links, or mention that my book can be previewed online etc. etc. or that I also have a Facebook profile, but I mix those up with more general (often even banal) comments and also comment on the things that followers of mine are saying. Occasionally they like these comments or messages enough to retweet them.
I find it irritating when irrelevant entities such as SEO companies, general timewasters, posters of links to Cialis and Viagra sites, etc. etc. start following- I never follow them back (after all that’s what they want- more people to spam) so eventually they tend to unfollow me. Irritating because for a brief moment you think they might actually be interested.
In a nutshell I’d say be active and be varied, show some interest in others’ posts.
You might also like this interview I did – http://audioboo.fm/boos/657444-creative-uses-of-twitter