Twitter Issues


“Thnx for follow. Buy my book here [insert link] [Insert Smiley Face]”


TwitterBefore I get carted off, shackled in stocks, and bombarded with rotting fruit, I do engage in Twitter and enjoy reading posts. I joined over 7 years ago and boy has it grown even since then – especially as I know some people who’ve been on there since the very beginnings. I’ve been there with the best and worst of them, struggling to fit what I want to say in just 140 characters, ultimately doing it-dip on which grammar law to break. The realisation of adding fullstop . before a username to make the tweet universally seen was a revelation in my household, let me tell you. The addition of multiple pics and other media attachments like youtube videos also strengthened the platform.

However …

I’ve got issues with the whole damn thing. I originally joined to follow celebrities and authors to get personalised updates and news. It was fun, interesting, simple. Then, as I published I extended to update my own work and for readers to follow me. I met new people, wonderful authors and writers who I now consider friends (even though we have never met).

But the more and more people you follow, the more clustered your ‘dashboard’ becomes. Indie authors follow other authors en-mass and expect a follow back for simply being in the same club. Yes, I am an indie author and it is essential to build contacts and to get any promotion you can get. But it all got too much for me. The constant messages of:

“Thnx for follow. Buy my book here [insert link] [Insert Smiley Face]”

“Check out my FB page, PLEASE”

“You’re in for some awesome tweets. Get my #FREE ebook here”

“Want more Twitter followers? Special price for guaranteed real people. 50k extra followers.”

Besides me wondering why the hell someone would hashtag a word in a private message to someone, I actually turned off my messages alerts. I think I woke up once to four hundred emails – all of them messages on Twitter. And yes, these were direct messages and not tweets addressed to me. They annoy the hell out of me.

Also, if I wanted to buy followers for $100 then I really must be desperate. These con people scam people into thinking they’ll sell loads more books by ‘reaching’ more people. What a load of rubbish! They pray on the vulnerable, possibly naive, writer who is realising that being an indie author is bloody hard work and ultimately feeling that any promotion they do is just a drop in an enormous ocean of other indie authors – indie authors who are so squashed into that ocean they’ll suffocate before long.

You end up scrolling through hundreds of promotional tweets that never stand out, get noticed, or make much of a difference. Have I ever promoted my books on Twitter? Of course I have. Am I a hypocrite? Of course I am. I’m not a fool – promotion is promotion. The slightest chance that one potential reader notices you and buys your book is a job well done.

I guess I sound rather down on Twitter don’t I? I think Twitter has lost its way. It has become redundant and can actually turn readers off from authors. Either the constant recycled tweet gets lame, quickly, or by the hundreds of RTs (Retweets) that also contribute to the clogged up dashboard.

The solution? Easy – like a blocked up drain, drench the entire thing with bleach and clear the rot out. Start again. Make everything fresh. Possibly introduce a new tab system where you can organise everything.

Fancy following me on twitter? INSERTS SARCASTIC WINK

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