It’s been a dog’s age, hasn’t it? :D Things have been pretty hectic-and-yet-not in RL land. It’s an odd thing, really – not a lot of orders needing to be done at work, and yet there I am, scrambling to keep us ahead of the game, which means no energy and no humor by the time I get home.
Other than the usual dogged chipping away at my newest novel work-in-progress, I have been making a concerted effort at minimizing my online time. I’ve always been kind of antagonistic toward social networking, and my re-opening a Twitter account as well as a Goodreads account was obligatory at best. Mind you, I’ve met a number of really great people in both places, but, damn, Twitter and Goodreads are a monumental time suck. And I’m really, really bad at small talk. If you’re familiar with the MBTI (I’m an INTJ), I tested as an extreme introvert, which, if applied to social networking, means that the more I’m obligated to be sociable, the more cantankerous and snarling I become.
I thought it was funny and yet sad that Wil Wheaton posted something along the same lines regarding social networks in a recent blog post:
There’s a moment every day when I think, “I should have written about that in my blog,” but then I realize that instead of planting the seeds that would grow into a story, I put them in boxes on a shelf called Twitter, or Tumblr, or Google Plus.
They’re nice seeds and all, and they look great in their individual boxes, preserved for years to come, but they never get a chance to grow into something more than just seeds.
I’m such a nerd, but his blog’s so much fun to read. What he posted is funny because it’s so timely and true, and it’s sad because it’s so, so true. I find that I’m starting to reduce my online presence to just little soundbites and occasional links. On one hand, it’s fun to do that, given the rigid structure of a tweet, but the satisfaction’s short-lived, and more often than not, there’s also a bit of guilt following it, depending on what I just posted after some thought or during a pretty emotional moment. It’s like a sugar rush that’s over so soon and also followed by a pretty icky sugar crash.
That said, I used to rely on only my blog for my web presence, and I expanded via Goodreads and Twitter because I figured that I was going to need them to help establish myself further. As it turns out, I rarely ever post at Goodreads (though I prefer to post my thoughts about books I read, not mingle with anyone in any group over there). And over at Twitter, I usually find myself drowning in noise, and more often than not, I just avoid the place altogether and spend the time reading. Which is, of course, always a good thing.
So I’m thinking of streamlining my web presence to just this blog and check out Goodreads only if I’m updating my status on a book I’m currently reading. I also want to limit my Twitter visits significantly as I’ve noticed that I’ve been spending way too much time over there than what’s healthy for a curmudgeonly, extreme introvert. Twitter’s definitely going to be a harder habit to break, but I know I can do it.
I do believe that the best marketing tool a writer has at his disposal is his backlist. And as far as I’m concerned, I’d sooner utilize as much time as I could writing more books to add to mine, not dive headlong into all kinds of social media. Then again, I suppose a sharp reader would jump on this and go, “Aha! This is just your way of rationalizing your misanthropy!”
Dude, I’m not that bad. Well, not that much, anyway.