Avoid the Ugly Side of Twitter
In preparation for an upcoming panel discussion on the pros and cons of social media for writers, I compiled a list of the top ten behaviors all writers should avoid on Twitter.
1. TIME SUCK
Twitter, like all social media, takes time away from your writing.
Use Twitter to build your writer's platform as a tool to supplement your writing, not as a substitute for it.
Don't overshare. Everyone can see your tweets, including agents and editors. Be yourself, but make sure what you share is appropriate and reflects on you in a positive light.
3. Twitter is not a therapist couch
Social media is not the place for writers to share their doubts, demons, fears or anger about their writing and the writing/submission process.
Agents and editors are looking for writers, who are confident in their work and professional in their behavior.
4. Play it close to the vest
Don't tweet about requests, R & Rs, or offers until you've signed a contract.
Don't tweet about rejections or not getting selected for contests.
5. Do your homework
Take the time to read agency websites, agent/editor blogs, and contest sites BEFORE you tweet questions.
Agents, editors, and contest organizers get understandably annoyed when you tweet them questions when the answers are readily available on-line.
6. No pitching outside of contests
Do not pitch your manuscript directly to an agent or editor on Twitter.
7. No nudging
Twitter is not the place to nudge agents or editors on a query or submission. If you are absolutely determined to nudge an agent or editor, use email. But patience is a virtue. Embrace it.
8. Don't be a Debbie Downer
No one wants to read constant complaints and “Woe, is me” tweets.
9. Keep it positive
Don't criticize agents, editors, or other writers on Twitter.
10. Ultimately, it all comes down to the writing!
Twitter pitch contests, networking, and a high follower count may get you and your manuscript a look, but they won’t get you an agent or editor.
Good writing trumps all!