How can Facebook help you, the independent writer?
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It’s not just for Candy Crush anymore.
Independent Writers on Facebook
Like other small business persons (for that is what an indie author is, right?), you have two separate lives on any social network. One is as an individual. You have friends, you have opinions. You might play games or write about politics. Or you might post memes or videos. You have fun, you express support or sympathy and, let’s face it, you give and receive attention.
Your other life is as a writer. A writer who might need help marketing. Maybe a writer who might to bounce ideas off other authors. A writer who might need some help with a plot, or at least a sympathetic ear. You might want to talk to others who have been where you are. Plus you might want to connect with people who can help you improve your craft. Those are beta readers, cover artists, and editors. They might be writers you admire, or even publishing houses which interest you.
As a writer, there is no reason for you to stop socializing online. On Facebook in particular, hanging out with other writers is a great idea.
Because writing is, by definition, a solitary pursuit. Even collaborators and co-authors don’t trade the article for the noun for the verb for the adjective for another noun, or sentence for sentence or paragraph for paragraph. Instead, collaborators will generally write their own portion of a work and then give it to their partner, as the partner does the same. They beta read for each other and combine the pieces, whether those are chapters or sections or the like. The details may differ, but it’s pretty inefficient to hang out together for the actual writing process (although they may get together to discuss plot).
Hangouts for Indie Writers
For independent writers, you have a few places on Facebook where you can hang out.
- NaNoWriMo group online – if you compete to write 50,000 words in November or April, then this is your scene. The group is large and generally friendly, although there are sometimes stretches of people stepping on toes. It’s best to hang back at the start and see how things go before you plunge in. There are also groups for local NaNo groups.
- Wattpad – if you belong to Wattpad, check them out on Facebook. While this is a games page, you can still get a handle on who is who. Befriend fellow Wattpadders? Why not?
- Queer Sci-Fi and other specialty genre groups – do some research; these can have varying activity levels.
- Services trading groups – your mileage will vary. Some are more active than others.
- Advertising groups – these tend to be bottom-feeding. If they are just a bunch of ads, and no one is liking or replying to the ads, then you know how effective they are.
Have I missed any groups? Add them in the Comments section!
Of course there is a lot more to Facebook. I’ll get to it soon. Stay tuned!