This week the YA Author Club talks about social media. I had to include the graphic above. I ran across this a year ago and keep a copy by my desk. It makes me smile.
I’m lucky to have a couple of friends that are social ninjas. I can go to them from time to time for advice. And that’s my advice to you. If you don’t know what you’re doing. Find someone who does. Every network has its own set of unspoken rules. Breaking those rules can harm your reputation online.
I’m also a bit of explorer (actually it’s more of a mindless wanderer thing); whatever it is, I’m constantly looking at new social media sites, trying to figure out if it makes sense for me. So far, I have author pages or profiles on the old standbys, Facebook and Twitter, as well as more creative outlets on Pinterest and YouTube. I have a profile on Google Plus, but I rarely post to it. I tried Tumblr and Instagram for a short time, but it just wasn’t for me.
It’s nearly impossible to tie social media likes/follows back to actual sales. However, if I would have to pick the one social media platform that was most successful for me, I would have to say Twitter. While I don’t have astronomical numbers, I do have a great base of loyal followers who are interested in young adult reads. I tweet a lot, and usually it’s nothing earth-shattering, just your run-of-the-mill fangirl wonderfluff. If there’s a new pic from the Divergent movie set, Misha Collins cracks a joke (which he often does) or if Charlaine Harris ever chooses to write about vampires again, I’m all over it. Ooh, and Rachel Caine– you know bestselling Rachel Caine of the Morganville Vampire Series– yeah, she follows me too. Which totally made my year when that happened because I absolutely adore her work.
So, when it comes to Twitter, I may have a problem. Probably need an intervention. Just look for @mogdocnews
Anyway, I’ve been thinking about YouTube a lot lately. To date, all I’ve done is post my book trailers to the site. I’m still unsure about creating a vlog (that’s video blog for you that are not as “hip” as I). So I asked myself, “Self, what could I do on YouTube?”
Then like the cliched ray of light bursting forth from the cloud-strewn heavens, it hit me. I’m going to do bonus feature commentaries.
Okay, stay with me on this one. I love movies. I have a Mass Communications degree and part of my undergraduate work was in video production. So, I really love it when the movies I love have bonus features that include commentaries. I think the best commentaries I’ve ever heard were from Joss Wheadon. Guy knows how to give a commentary. Instead of mindlessly rambling on with astonishment about how something was actually CGI when it is clear to anyone with eyes that it’s CGI; he gives us the real meat like why he chose to shoot a scene a certain way or how the scene was first shot and why it didn’t work and what he did to change it so that it does work. I love his commentaries because they show the love he has for his job and the thoughtfulness he puts into every scene.
“Self, how are you gonna pull that off? You’re not writing picture books. You can’t watch the book and listen to the commentary, like you can a movie.”
So here’s my solution. I’m going to record my commentary covering a few chapters at a time. Readers should read the book first (or at least the chapters covered) and then listen/watch the commentary. I will not include spoilers for later chapters. My books were set up so readers would find something new upon a second read. I plan to uncover some of these things as well as any easter eggs (if you read this blog, you’ll know there are many). I’ll also share some of the reasons why I did what I did. Look for announcements to come when the first of the commentaries are posted.
Still feeling a little clueless? Check in with these social media mavens…