I hated Twitter. From the very beginning, my thought was, “who the hell cares what you do every second of your life?” Don’t get me wrong, in many cases, that is still my thought. However, my eyes have been opened to the beauty and wonder that is Twitter. Why, you might ask? Because, since joining, I have learned many things about writing in general. Here are the revelations:
1. Wealth of resources: I follow both agents, writers and publishers alike. There are posts with websites on how to do everything from write a great query letter to how to engage a reader in any genre and age. Agents are incredibly helpful with answering the infamous #askagent questions and they are words straight from the gurus themselves. Does it get any better than that? Publishers love to show off their new acquisitions, which give you an idea of what the market needs, is accepting, and is oversaturated with. Famous and infamous bloggers post on all the tricks of the trade from editing, to querying, to critique partners, to pitch contests. Twitter has opened my world up to a wealth of knowledge I definitely did not have before.
2. Connections Connections Connections: The people you connect with through are from all areas of writing and publishing. They are global. I currently follow people from four continents. That is incredible. Just knowing people, being able to pull from their knowledge base and networking with people from around the world is amazing.
3. You are not alone: There is a huge amount of value in knowing that you are not alone. There are a ton of people working on getting published and getting rejections just like you. It is a community of supportive writers and bookish nerds just like you. On a day when ten rejections rolled in, it’s nice to know it’s not just you (or is it?).
4. Meet the Agents: Agents tweet constantly! It is amazing! Getting to know specific agents through their tweets (it is not the be-all end-all) is a window into their personality. This is not just good for use in your query letters, but it reveals who you would mesh well with and who you might not. It definitely helps narrow the field. You need to query those that you would click with. Twitter helps you distinguish the agents from the dream agents. This is also true for publishers as well.
Do not mistake what I am saying. I do not care if you pooped today or if you stepped in gum. No one wants to know that stuff, especially me. But it is a place to connect and learn a little bit about the business and the people in it. Books is definitely a community. I feel honored to be slowly working my way into it. Very Slowly. Twitter, you have converted me.