Welcome to the thirteenth installment of Twitter Tuesday. In the spirit of Twitter, this blog will be short and sweet and to the point. The tips offered here are all based off my best-selling book We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media. If our goal is to build an author platform in the thousands to tens of thousands, then we will have to approach Twitter differently than a faceless corporation or even the regular person who does not possess a goal of becoming a brandwill help you rule the Twitterverse without devolving into a spam bot.
This Week’s Fail Whale–The Twitter Tyrant
All of us have passions, and that is wonderful. Being passionate makes us feel alive and gives our lives purpose. But, when we are building a platform, especially in the beginning stages, we must be mindful to always express our passions in a positive way. Ranting on Twitter is never acceptable. I have had people I had to unfollow simply because every time they tweeted, I needed an antacid. Life is stressful enough without volunteering for an ulcer.
Ranting is unproductive and it creates a negative experience, even for people who might agree with us. Ranting is just that…ranting. It offers nothing but negative energy, whether at a party or on Twitter. It depresses others and makes them feel helpless.
Do I suggest that writers give up their passions and beliefs and become luke warm, melba-toast humans? Of course not. But we must be mindful that we are creating a positive experience for those who keep company with us. If our contribution to the Twitterverse just makes people want to crawl back in bed, then our efforts are doing more harm than good.
I would say that if you need to rant, do so with your close friends. But, then again? We should be nice to our friends. Ranting isn’t healthy for either party. We all have times that we get so frustrated we feel as if we are going to explode. What to do? Scream in a pillow, vacuum, mow the lawn, do yoga. Do something to burn off that anger. After that? Refocus that negative energy in a positive and constructive way. Our blood pressure and our friends will appreciate it.
Be a Twitter Activist
So say you are just fed up with people who abuse animals or you want to support the troops or even save the whales. It is okay to have beliefs, but as authors we need to be watchful that we are always being positive. That’s the biggest consideration. If you are tired of animals being abused, then feel free to tweet a link to support a local shelter. If you love the troops, then send a link to support the Wounded Warrior Foundation. If you love eating a vegetarian diet, then tweet great articles that inspire others to maybe embrace this lifestyle you love.
This is a far more positive use of our time. It doesn’t alienate or upset others and it does one critical thing ranting will never accomplish. This approach empowers people. We have given them a link to actively DO something. This is the responsible way to champion a cause or a belief.
My only concern beyond this is that we need to make sure that championing our cause doesn’t become our entire platform. We are trying to build an author platform, not run for office.
At the end of the day all this tweeting and retweeting and socializing is to forge relationships that, hopefully, will drive book sales. It is okay to be an author with a social passion, but it is easy to have the social passion take over and then people don’t realize we are writers with a novel to sell. As long as we remain positive and balanced, then people will enjoy our company and will eagerly support our career and our passions.
Tweet ya later!