Monthly Archives: February 2012

Twitter. LinkedIn. Facebook. Google+. Goodreads. Google Groups.


Every day I have more conversations around social media and the best ways to use it to sell brands, promote good public relations and engage loyal fans. It’s more than getting your book sold or noticed by readers, it’s who makes the best taco and where should you get your car serviced. I have a large client list with some businesses deep in the social media mindset and others who are still trying to figure out their smart phone. Does their media savvy effect their business efforts? Yes and no. I’m listening and learning and trying to gauge where to spend my social media time for the goals I have in mind for my writing.

The bottom line: you need to know your end-goal before you lay in a plan to get there. The goal and the plan determines the best tools and delivery methods. Sorry this is sounding like a marketing spiel, but indie authors have to be marketers and PR specialist. You have to cut out time vampires whether it’s a bad habit that keeps you from writing or a line of self-promotion that doesn’t deliver.

The best advice I’ve gotten on the subject is to find what you enjoy and make that your focus. Some writers love engaging in forums. Others thrive on Facebook. I’ve decided Twitter has the biggest return for my invested time, as well as blogging and taking part in blog tours.

What works for me on Twitter?
I use the search feature to find followers who may like what I write and are interested in the same subjects I’m researching. My follows bring them in as followers and soon I have a dialog.

Knowing where my followers live allows me to tweet on their time. No, I don’t look up street addresses, but knowing the country or time zone lets me tweet when they are looking. Carolyn McCray oft tells on the IBC Blogtalk radio show, “on Twitter everyone sees you and no one sees you.” It’s all in the timing.

I skim through my stream and retweet what I find interesting or fun and in turn they may feel inclined to share my tweets with their followers.

Striking up a conversation is fun and helps build a connection. I’ve met so many wonderful writers and avid readers on Twitter and they have been generous in supporting my work. Guys, I couldn’t do this without you:)

Why does blogging work?
You get to show off your personality. It also helps if you have something interesting to share. If you write with passion it will resonate. If you write well, your blog readers may become your novel readers.

Some weeks it’s tough to come up with a topic, and often I write something completely different than what I planned. This week I intended to write about symbolism in novels to help build the plot and characters using WIRED as an example. Then I had a meeting and the conversation came around to social media. Its a full time job in a growing number of companies. I’m also testing out a new 3rd party Twitter app, Timely.is which analyzes your followers and schedules your tweets for times when they may be on the stream. It’s only been two days and so far not much response. I’ll give it a week or two and see if it really gets more new followers and RTs than my own efforts. At times I think gut feeling is stronger than algorithms.

Share what works best for you and the smart tips that make you a rock star in the social media world.


Scraps of the Past


It’s inevitable. As we get older we become less sentimental about the odd bits and pieces we carry around from our past. I’m referring to the box(es) of stuff that has survived childhood and traveled to college dorm rooms, first apartments and finally the closet or attic where you now live.

Every time you move and have to pack these things and carry the box to a new home you weigh its importance to your memories or future.

In my box of “stuff” is a stack of notebooks full of youthful angst, poems and the beginnings of a first novel written the summer after fifth grade. Other bits of interest include petrified chewing gum from my 1st Police concert, a t-shirt from Girl Scout camp plus a moth eaten beret.

Digging deeper (metaphorically speaking) I see stories – the ones I read growing up, the stories I dreamed of writing and an impression of a little girl that wanted to see the world through the eyes of Nancy Drew and HG Wells.

I get the same feeling whenever I walk through a junk store looking for vintage jewelry or a discarded first edition. I can’t help but create a story for the journey the objects traveled. Who owned them? What was the world like when it was new?

These details often find their way into my writing. I think that’s why I love writing about art and have spent so much time learning about its plight through history. Each portrait is the face of someone with a story and the painting itself has its own tale. Landscapes are as much an image of a place frozen in time as it is the artist’s personal expression.

Move through time to Impressionism and Modernism and you see a world that is rapidly transforming to an uncertain destiny.

As I add details to Jade’s life, I’m thinking about what bits she would carry around. How does a person with amnesia take stock of the past which made her who she is? Fun is in the details and for Jade, there are also clues there for her to discover.


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