How is Twitter Going to Make You a Better Writer?

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Now, the question posed to me is, how do we make twitter work for us as writers?

Well, the thing is this… with social networking sites like twitter, facebook, etc. you only get out of them as much as you put in. If you aren’t actively following people, participating in twitter convos and checking your tweets daily, then you aren’t using twitter to its fullest potential.

The first thing you need to do is stop using the twitter webpage to manage your tweets. Instead, download a program to tweet with. I like twitterfox, but a lot of people swear by tweetdeck. I won’t go into the specifics of how to use these programs here, because there are loads and loads of websites out there dedicated to just that, so instead I will get to the point! (Wow, it’s just like my first draft, I spent half the article setting you up for the juicy part!)

You need people to follow, and there are some great people to follow out there. I started with this list: 25 Good People to Follow.

You now have a way to tweet, and fun people to follow. The only thing left is what you should be tweeting. Start out simple, ask questions to people about the writing process, ask them about query letters, agents will answer your tweets all the time, and they love to answer them via twitter because it gives them a chance to answer mundane things that people ask all the time, but to a large audience.

The other day I told an agent I felt a little guilty asking them up on twitter, their answer:

Now, this isn’t your free license to just annoy every agent/writer/publiser on twitter. Look at their tweets, find a common interest, and try to make a friend. It will be obvious if you are fake. But, if you are genuine, and you are really looking for people that share your love for writing, then twitter will work for you.

Take some time this week tweeting up people, and look through their twitter pages… see who THEY are talking to, and follow those people that are talking back and forth with them about writing. Ask the questions you were scared to ask, and listen listen listen. You will learn so much from these people 140 characters at a time!

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