Professional Social Media

Today, the publishing agreement arrived, and I’m once again bouncing with excitement. It still hasn’t sunk in that I’m going to get to publish The Repossessed Ghost.

There is useful documents in the package from the publisher. In addition to two copies of the publishing agreement, there are two copies of the Social Media agreement, as well as two different welcome letters and a W-9 to fill out. Somehow the tax form makes it more real than it had been before.

The Social Media agreement strongly suggests creating separation between professional and personal social media accounts. It’s well thought out, and I understand what they’re trying to do. If one of their authors starts blasting antisemitic or racist trash, they want to have a document that gives them an easy way out of that relationship. I get it, and I’m on board.

I think a younger version of myself might have furrowed his brow, wondering if he wanted to have any kind of stipulations on what he can or cannot say. Like I said, the agreement is about protecting them. It’s not about controlling their authors’ speech. It’s very reasonable.

The agreement makes me scrutinize my social media accounts. I don’t think anything will change much with this blog. I may change the format, or add some tabs for additional links. The purpose of this blog is for me to talk about my journey as a writer. I can continue using it for that purpose.

I have gone into some political rants when looking at current events in the past. I’ve curtailed those posts already. It won’t hurt anything for me to stop posting those to my main feed. If I reach a point where I feel like I absolutely have to write something that is of a political nature, I might open up a completely different part of the blog which is separate from the main section. It can be purely dedicated to receiving my posts that are purely personal.

I don’t think much will change here, to be honest.

Twitter and Facebook, though. I haven’t deleted my Twitter account, but I’ve stopped using it. I may start using it, but only to engage with other writers and to tweet about writing. Again, that’s not completely different from how I was using it before.

The only things I’ve been posting to Facebook for the last few years have been links to this blog. That won’t change too much, though like with Twitter, I may start posting more things related to promoting my book.

I’m not going to turn my social media accounts into advertising robots. It will still be me managing the accounts, and I’ll still talk with people normally. It’s just that my time on the social media platforms will be slightly more focused and contained. It’s better than what I was going to do, which was delete the accounts altogether.

I’ll probably start posting book covers and thinks to Instagram. I have an account there and follow several people. I’ve never posted anything. When I’ve decided on an author photo and have book cover images, that seems like a great place to post that kind of stuff.

What about TikTok? Other platforms?

I’ve never spent much time on TikTok. Melissa watches it all the time, and I sometimes watch over her shoulder. Sometimes she’ll bring me a video and share it with me. At this point, I don’t have any plans to get on TikTok, but that’s where a lot of other writers are building their platform. If it seems like a natural place for me to post things, I’ll figure it out.

I’ll post more VLOGs to YouTube. That’s all I’ve ever used my YouTube account for already, so no change there.

Finally, and absolutely the least, I have an account on Mastadon, but I don’t spend any time there. Maybe I’ll cross-post from Twitter to there, but it seems really complicated for what it is, and I’m not sure it’s very useful.

With the way I’m using social media these days, I’m not sure I need to create a separate personal and professional accounts. I still think social media is one of the big Internet mistakes. It’s the artificial sweetener of relationships, providing a strange kind of sweetness but with none of the nutritional benefit. And sometimes it causes cancer.

I like writing here, but this doesn’t feel like social media, to me. It’s my open journal, raw and barely edited. There is room for nuance, here.

I’m not going to write here every day (unless it’s October), but I will likely write here more often.