Twits and Tweets

I’ve been sitting here for about thirty minutes trying to come up with a topic for my online live chat tomorrow night at No Whine, Just Champagne on gather.com, trying to think of a bloggery for the Second Wind blog tomorrow, trying to think of something to write for my blog tonight. While I’ve been waiting for my brain to kick into gear, I’ve been doing the online equivalent of channel surfing — checking my emails, checking Facebook to see if anything is going on, checking Twitter.

Ah, Twitter. Now that’s something I can talk about. Is Twitter still a good way of connecting with people? It seems as if the only people who are adding me are multi-level-marketers, people posting links to nude pictures, people actively looking to sell me something, or people with more than 10,000 followers. I can’t imagine that any of those people will see or care about my tweets. In fact, it’s probably time for me to go through my followers and block those I’m not interested in. I should also go through the list of those I am following. When I first started with Twitter, I followed everyone who followed me, but I can see that’s no way to use the site. Maybe it’s better to have just a few followers and followings, people who actually care about one another’s twits and tweets?

I’ve read that Twitter has a 60% 30 churn rate, which means that 60% of those who sign up don’t return after 30 days. So there’s a good chance that more than half of those who follow me or who I follow aren’t even on the site. If I had the time, it would be a good idea to clean up my account, but if no one is paying attention, does it matter?

What I’m really looking for is the next fun site. Facebook is fun for me, but that’s because I’ve figured out a few things to do on the site, and I’ve actually been able to connect with people. Same with Gather. Goodreads should be fun, since it’s about books, but I find I have nothing much to say about books any more. In fact, I have four books sitting here on my desk — Steel Waters and Toxic Shock Syndrome by Ken Coffman, and The Medicine People and Lacey Took a Holiday by Lazarus Barnhill — books I promised to review but haven’t (sorry Ken and Laz), books I read and loved, yet the only thing I can think of to say about all four books is, “Great book. Read it.” Not much of a review, though it is the truth. So the books sit here, taunting me. But I digress.

So, what is the next fun site? If you hear of a site that’s easy to use, that get’s your name out there, that helps you make friends and connections, let me know. I need more places to check when I go surfing.

add to del.icio.us : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine : : : TailRank : post to facebook

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11 Responses to “Twits and Tweets”

  1. James Rafferty Says:

    Hi Pat. I already spend so much time on Gather and in reading blogs, that adding twitter just hasn’t made sense for me. Perhaps if I were actively promoting a book I’d think differently about this. I find Gather, my blog and Facebook are good for connecting with people about writing and LinkedIn is very good for my VoIP business contacts.

  2. ~Sia McKye~ Says:

    Pat, I used to be like you. Anyone that followed me, sure I followed back Then Kusher had to get in there and try for a million followers, sheesh, and of course then all sorts of weird people followed suit. I see some with 9K followers and think, wtf?

    Now? look at each one, check out their tweets and decide. Prophetess, and Brother so and so from he church of whatever? don’t bother me. Porn stuff, oh please. Marketing stuff? sometimes, depending upon their angle, if it’s to SELL me something, no thanks.

    Some of the people’s tweets, I’ll go look at if it’s interesting or it plays into what I’m doing. I don’t bother with Mr. or Mz No life, with 25 updates on their day to day schedule. I care why about feeding your toddler, or that you had salad for lunch or talked to cousin billy bob. Who gives a rats ass about minutia about personal life?

    Clean it out? why bother. They don’t pay attention anyway.

  3. Vivian A Says:

    Pat you are so much more engaged and involved in utilizing these different platforms. I just don’t feel the pull to Tweet or Facebook. You only know me from Gather and it’s the only place I have time to loiter.

    Link reminders are invaluable to me, thanks for leaving the breadcrumbs out.

  4. otherlisa Says:

    Twitter is cool! Like Sia says, it pays to be selective.

    I am @otherlisa!

  5. Ken Coffman Says:

    If anyone understands the perils of multitasking like a one-armed street juggler, it would be moi. Some less-vital tasks get done, but always on a hot-or-miss basis. No worries.

  6. Wanda Says:

    I agree about Twitter being a numbers game, I’m on it but not interested in it at all. I thought it would be a good way to connect to family members, the younger ones anyway. But it’s not so much and I tire easily of the multiple daily tweets. I think I may be one of the 60% 30 churn. LOL

    Gather is my mainstay and I enjoy it so much that I don’t have time to linger on other sites much. I do enjoy Facebook but alas, I don’t have time to gift anyone with pretty fishes, toys, roses, hugs or other stuff.

    Like you Pat, I have several books to review and want to say more than, great book, read it! Yours are among those, sorry hon. I give both of your books 5 shooting stars with a bullet!

  7. Smith River Says:

    Pat, if that’s all you are reading, you’ll never learn anything. Read authors who are successful if you want to learn how to succeed at this game. It is a game and one this crowd has lost. They lost when they left the game to declare themselves winners. Not. Never give up. Never accept, obscurity. No one cares are about the group but the members of the group. DOA to date. Just because you are on Facebook and Twitter doesn’t mean you are at the same level as the successful on both. That takes work and accomplishment, not just an automatic sign up.

  8. Ken Coffman Says:

    The always-amusing Mark York turns up. How nice. I know some things he does not know…for example, the next five years are going to be interesting and fruitful for several of our little community of writers. We’re learning and advancing our skills…in several directions, we’re pressing against the barriers. Some of us have already broken through with profitable books, some with agents and contracts with big-name publishers. More of us will. Some milestones are not public yet…it’s an exciting and fun thing to watch. I’m jazzed. Go team, go.

  9. Suzanne Francis Says:

    I don’t Twitter or Facebook, and I haven’t been real good about visiting Gather either. :-( I’ve heard arguments both for and against social networking as a way to self-promote. In my case, it’s sheer laziness that stops me from participating. I do surf the net, but I’m a news junkie, and that’s all I really look at.

  10. Pat Bertram Says:

    Suzanne, what are the arguments against using social networking as a way to self-promote? Maybe if I know what those are, I can find a way around them.

    If you ever decide to Twitter or Facebook, let me know. I’ll introduce you around.

  11. Suzanne Francis Says:

    The argument, as I read it, was that it was a waste of time that could be more profitably spent writing. But all such arguments are anecdotal. My thought would be if you enjoy it then do it, but don’t let social networking eat up all your writing time.


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