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Follow You, Follow Me

So I failed. Yep, again. Woke up this morning with a headache, which I haven’t been able to shake. But I thought, “Nope, you have work to do!”

After days of falling prey to the lure of certain marketing gold, I sincerely intended to get back on track. As I mentioned in my last post, book 2 edits are waiting. They’re not going to fix themselves. And it’s not like I’m able to relaunch book 1 yet. Besides – writers write.

Instead, I spent the entire day on social media. “What fun!” you say? Oh n-n-no. I beg to differ.

It’s a strange world we live in. With the advent of social media and its advantages for self-published writers, it’s easy – and necessary – to have a strong social media presence. If you aren’t on Facebook and Twitter at a bare minimum, fellow authors and potential readers will look at you like you have three heads. The savvier, more seasoned self-publishers have discovered ways to actually manage multiple social media sites with an app! It’s a good thing, too, because the expectation is we’re available. All the time. That’s right! All the time. Well, if you want to eek out a living anyway. And you’d better have an active blog life as well. Dontcha want to be seen? Dontcha want to sell books?? Dontcha want to connect with your readers???

What I’ve realized lately is self-promotion is hard.

Ta-da! My big mental breakthrough as an author: marketing is hard. It only took me nearly two decades to fully realize what everyone around me knows. As self-published authors, we need to be social, constantly churning out extra-career content to discuss the hows and whys of our craft, and still find time to write amazing tomes. If we have a family, we basically need to clone ourselves to accomplish 1/10th of what we need to get done. So yeah, hard. I can’t tell you how much I admire those of my contemporaries who manage to make it work.

A couple days ago, Kari Holloway, an author friend of mine, offered some sage advice to a group we belong to. I don’t know if she was passing it along from another source or if it was her own pearl of wisdom. (She’s pretty smart and really talented – I’d bet the latter.) She uses “timers” and sets “limits.” You know, like grown up disciplined professional types who have their proverbial acts together. She also cranks out a lot of work. (Who does she think she is, anyway??)

But I digress. Her offering the other day made a lot of sense. In a nut shell, she rightly stated it’s impossible to do it all on social media. And maybe we shouldn’t even try. Maybe just focus on the one, two, or even three platforms we’re most comfortable with – the ones we use most often – and concentrate our efforts on those. The good news is so many of them “feed” into the others, it’s fairly easy to expand our reach without killing ourselves in the process.

My solution to this valuable revelation? I joined Instagram. <sigh> I don’t know how it works. I’ve never considered using it. I hate the camera (when it’s on me). What better reasons to add it to my social media … uh … “presence?” Who knows? Maybe the real reason was so I can watch the little buttons at the top of my website expand. “Oh, look! Another one!”

Tomorrow, I’ll try again to take Kari’s advice. Who needs all these accounts anyway? I have way too much to do, and it’s really starting to back up!

(But if you see me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Amazon, LinkedInYouTube, Pinterest, Google+, Vidme, Minds, or Instagram, give me a follow…okay?)

Take care, all!

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