So I know you've all been dying for more about my mistakes on Twitter. I'm realizing I may have to do this one mistake at a time, because apparently I'm a bit long winded. But hopefully this will help any newbies to Twitter have a smoother time of it. Maybe it won't take you A YEAR (!!!) to figure it out.
My Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Mistake #1: When I set up my account, I followed only a select few tweeps. My reasoning was that I didn't want to hear a bunch of random comments from people I didn't know.
. . . so that's pretty much what Twitter is. But there are the good
kind of stranger-tweeters and the bad kind. I think you will learn
pretty quickly which is which.
So here are my suggestions about who to follow (speaking as one writer to another)
1. Agents: Summer Heacock (aka @fizzygrrl) has made this easy for you. I present Agents-to-Follow Cheatsheet 1 and Cheatsheet 2. You might even want to create a list of just agents so you can see what they are tweeting at a glance.
2. Editors: A couple of my favorites include: @the_SDB, @StacyAbramsEdit, @CarolineAbbey, @MKCastellani, @EgmontUSA, and I could go on. My focus is MG, but find the editors that work on the stuff you write. GalleyCat gives a long list of tweeting editors here.
Industry Groups: This would include publishing companies, writing
magazines, and any group that might give information you're interested
in. Twitter can help find the bulk of these.
4. Blog Friends: Gosh, I hope you know who this is for you. ;)
5. People who interest you: Heck, if you think Ryan Gosling is the bomb, follow him. Maybe Honest Toddler is your thing. Go for it!
6. People who follow you: This is the trickiest group. I know that most people who follow me do it to get a follow back. But that doesn't mean I have to give it. Usually, I glance through their tweets and see if they are a real person or just a tweeter of spam, then make the call. I know some people who only follow people they know. But I have met some cool people by taking a chance
Family/Friends: So no one in my family tweets, and very few of my real
life friends do. And I'm okay with that. I use twitter as a tool in my
writing life, and reserve Facebook for my family and friends. But if you
do, you might want them on your feed. Your call. Just remember who follows you when you tweet. If you wouldn't want your mom to read a tweet, better not tweet it.
(And actually, that might be a good rule to live by whether your mother is on Twitter or not.)
So there it is. In a nutshell. My suggestion is that you take some risks. Try following some new people. The thing to remember? YOU CAN ALWAYS UNFOLLOW SOMEONE. If you don't like someone's tweets, unfollow them. And if they unfollow you back, so be it.
Twitter is a tool, and you should play around with it until it works for you. And for all you experts, how do you decide who to follow?
Next Twitterpated installment? What to tweet . . . and what not to.