Monday, June 6, 2011

What I’ve learned about writing and the world of social media

I will openly admit I used to be one of those people who scoffed and snickered at people who used facebook, were open bloggers, and more annoyingly the people who constantly checked their twitter to see what so-and-so had tweeted about that day.  I mean seriously, who cared about so and so having waffles instead of pancakes for breakfast or if so and so should have cake instead of ice cream for dessert? 

Looking back I realize it’s a very human response to devalue and mock what you don’t know or understand.  It’s a form of fear.  And once I made the decision to face my fear and find out for myself what social media was all about and why so many people really valued it, I quickly became a believer.  Since then, I have become completely sucked into the media shuffle and can honestly say I’ve changed my tune and am so glad I did.  I’ve literally discovered a whole other side to writing, publishing and just other writers in general since becoming more connected through facebook, blogging and twitter.  I feel lucky to have also found a number of fantastic writers I’ve come to admire and respect, and who drive me to continue my own journey in achieving my dreams of seeing my own book on the bookshelf of my local bookstore.

One of the really great things I’ve discovered about the whole social media networking system is how connected and interactive other writers, and aspiring writers, are with one another through this median.  I've gained a strong sense of not being alone in my struggles, doubts and fears, and have come to value how open and honest others are willing to be with you if you’re ready and willing to listen.

Social media has become a way for many writers to chronicle their journeys.  For some starting from the beginning with the inception of their book idea, then going all the way (in some cases) to getting published and making it in a big way.  But for a great many its also about helping those who are following in their paths to achieve their own success.  I have a list of writers that I personally follow on my own page under “Awesome Blogs & Sites”.  On their sites many open up and discuss the up and downs of their journey and experiences, and how more than anything its been their blind-crazy determination and stubbornness that’s gotten them through the many months and sometimes years of not getting picked up by an agent or having publisher after publisher turn them away.  I’m pretty positive I still have many of these battles to face myself, but it definitely gives me hope to know I’m not the first nor will I be the last to take this path. 

I feel lucky to have formed the bonds that I have so far, and to be part of a really special community of YA writers.  So I wanted to send a huge thank you to all those who have gone out on a limb to support me in my wild adventure to becoming published.  And to also express how great it feels to be apart of something that’s bigger than just me and knowing that there is purpose in both having and being actively passionate about something you love to do.

Happy Reading!

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