Yes, Facebook can be a tremendous time-suck and I still find Twitter to be like standing in a crowded room where everyone shouts “Look at me!” all at the same time. Both are necessary evils for many writers, an expected marketing platform. For me, an as-yet-unpublished writer with nothing out there to sell, social media is about networking, connecting with writers from all over the world, people I would not otherwise get the chance to know.
I confess that the vast majority of my social life takes place on-line.
Without Facebook I would never have connected with Therese Walsh, the Blog Mama over at Writer Unboxed. I would not have been invited to join the Mod Squad, a cluster of volunteers who keep Writer Unboxed’s Facebook group a refreshingly self-promotional free zone. The Mod Squad is a tight bunch; we connect daily through a private group on Facebook, sharing not only information on the posts we have zapped, but also our personal and professional hurdles, our rants, and our greatest fears. We listen, we comfort, and we tell each other to just write the damn book already.
It’s safe to say this group has become a part of my closest circle of friends, though I had met none of them in real life until this past week.
|Kim, Vaughn and Heather in Dallas|
This photograph, taken here in Dallas, would not exist without social media. I would not know the epic fantasy writer from Michigan (Vaughn Roycroft) or his wife, Maureen (who took the photo). This would be a shame as they are arguably the nicest couple on the planet. Though I live only twenty miles or so from Young Adult fiction writer Heather Reid, DFW is a crowded place and chances are we would never have met. Now she and fellow Mod Squad member Valerie Chandler will sit beside me on a flight to Boston in November. We will share a hotel room in Salem’s Hawthorne Hotel where we will attend the Writer Unboxed Un-Conference, which is sure to be a highlight of our year.
Would I be more productive without Facebook? Probably. Would my life be as rich? No way.
Have any of your virtual friendships become real ones? We’d love to hear your stories!