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Social media for beginners

We’re living in a world that's unrecognisable from the one we lived in just a few short decades ago – especially in terms of technology. 

Do you have any social media tips for beginners? What would your suggestion be for a writer new to the world of Twitter, Instagram or Facebook? 

Share them (and your social handles) below!

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Replies (35)
    • Reply to people as much, if not more, than you post! So many people jump in and start broadcasting about themselves without getting to know anyone and it feels very one-sided. Get involved in conversations with other writers and you'll soon find some supportive friends. 

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      • I'm replying to you, does this make me a supportive friend? :) 

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        • The most supportive of them all 👭 

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        • And I'll  reply too - even though the world of social media is a mystery to me (so far !)

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          • Hi Bridget! If you can manage chatting on Townhouse you can definitely master social media :) 

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          • I am loath to join Twitter without knowing how it works! Was looking forward to tomorrow night's webinar but it's been cancelled. The only thing I think I know is that I am restricted to 140 characters, like FB used to be. Is that still the case?

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            • One more to add, Zoe Richards is running an event on the 28th September which will no doubt include some Twitter info as she's great on there! image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=563&dpx=2&t=1631717422

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              • Thanks for the information, Sophie. Please give our sympathies to Julie.

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                • Looks really interesting, Sophie, but I can't find it anywhere. Do you have a link?

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                • I didn't have much to do with social media until about a year ago. I've always found it a conundrum that it's useful to have a social media presence to publicise your writing, but how do you build followers before you're published. A chicken and egg scenario.

                  I watched an event at last years summer festival of writing that talked about Twitter being a very good way to funnel readers towards an authors website and email list. So in preparation of one day having one (I hope), I decided to take the plunge and dive in. A year later I've got 1,400 followers.

                  Not knowing what to Tweet about, I used one of the daily writing prompts to create a very short story. There's a mix of them to choose from, including horror, poetry & Haikus, as well as a basic word prompt. They're a fun way to get started.

                  Other advise I've seen which rings true from my experience:

                  Have a pinned tweet that says a little about you, where you can include links to your authors website (if you have one) and anywhere you've been published.

                  It's nice to retweet, but if your stream is simply pages of retweets, you're less likely to get followers. Put some original work of your own up there too.

                  Publicise anything you've got published, but don't just do that, as it becomes repetitive. Mix it up a bit.

                  I've found it great fun to be part of Twitter. There's a big writing community, and lot's of magazines use it to publicise open submission calls, so useful for that too. Don't be nervous. Take the plunge.

                  If anyone wants to follow my whimsical daily tweets about a pranking pixie and an uptight angel, you can find me @KateMachon.

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                  • I don't know about beautiful, but thanks.
                    Do you ever have days where you really can't be bothered to write the story? It's quite the commitment thinking one up every day.

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                    • I've almost ditched it a few times when inspiration hasn't struck. Searching for an idea does tend to distract me from everything else I have to do. But I'm not ready to give up the challenge yet. The stories seems to give a lot of people a smile. But the day will come... 

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                      • It'll be a sad day.

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                      • Hi Kate, I tried to log in to twitter so I could follow you. Will try again from my phone, it might work better. I'm at @LisaPais1

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                        • i found and followed you. :)

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                        • There seems no doubt that Twitter is a potentially useful tool for writers and other in this and other fields, But that shouldn't mean we have to pretend it's not shite.

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                          • I was so looking forward to Julie's webinar, if only to find out how she created her recent playlist for music in her book! Hopefully she'll be better soon. I have a page on Facebook but most of his is family stuff, I follow a few authors on there, but Twitter for me is where book people are at. I have learned loads on there, found some great contacts and bought loads of books on recommendations. I owe my membership of Jericho to a fellow author group, so yeah, Twitter has been massive for my progress and is a safe, and informative haven. Yes, I have other interests and debate stuff but the book world is both welcoming and helpful.  I follow people on Instagram but don't post on there much.  

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