Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Twitter Etiquette

It's been a week now since I've joined Twitter and so far and all I can say is WOW!!!! So much information!!!!! And it's all moving so FAST.

Twitter is very crazy and VERY addictive. It's more then a social network--it's an information network.

So, here's my question: What is Twitter Etiquette?

I've read a few articles online, but the guidelines given aren't really what I'm looking for. I mean, we all know about the 140 character rule and to be polite, isn't that obvious? But what I'm talking about are the nitty-gritty details that us writer folks want to know about.

For example, you can follow ANYONE on Twitter (well, unless they block you). You don't need to wait for a friend request like you have to on Facebook. This means that every editor, agent and writer on Twitter is free game. Totally cool, but do they really want to hear from me? Seriously.

I'm mean, Monday night Anne Rice was tweeting about the New Orleans Saints and I was watching the game. I so felt like jumping in the conversation, but OMG it's Anne Rice!!! The Vampire Chronicles start racing through my head and I have tweet fright.
Do I tweet? Do I lurk? What to do?

I logged off.

Now what about editors and agents? They're tweeting all sorts of fabulous information. But they're busy, people!

Part of me thinks that you'll never network if you don't jump in. BUT you don't want to be annoying either. Where's the line? I feel like shouting "Hey Editor X and Agent Y, I heard about that too. Did you see the article by Author Z?"

But, yeah, I don't. Fear of ridicule still applies to Twitter...

So, what do all you fabulous writers have to say? Your advice would be awesome.


Stephanie Thornton said...

Sorry- I can't help you with this one! I tried Twitter, but decided I would get addicted and I just don't have time right now.

Crazy about talking to Anne Rice though- you should have jumped in. The worst she could say is, "Hey, girl I don't know. Leave me alone!"

And then you could say Anne Rice told you off! :)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I'm with Stephanie - can't help on this one. But hey, I'm glad I could be here for ya! ;-)

Steph Damore said...

Stephanie - That would be too funny, and I always love telling a good story.

Shannon - Thanks girl! I posted this link on Twitter. Hopefully someone from there will pop over.

Bane of Anubis said...

Yep, I'm out of the twitter loop, too -- you're gonna have to be our vanguard on this one.

DebraLSchubert said...

If it weren't for Twitter, I might not have an agent right now. I say "go for it!" Trust your instincts and don't worry so much. If a certain agent were to get annoyed by you (which I can't imagine happening!), then they're not the agent for you anyway. Relax and have fun. ;-)

Laura Martone said...

I agree with Steph T. You should've jumped in re: Anne Rice. Man, I sure would have if I hadn't been watching the Saints kick the Patriots' arses in a French Quarter bar.

Poop. What a chance I missed. Didn't even occur to me that Anne Rice would be on Twitter at all.

P.S. The only agent I've tweeted on Twitter is, you guessed it, Nathan. But, sadly, he never responds. :-(

Steph Damore said...

Thanks Debra. I must say, you're a Twittering expert :) I'll try to relax more.

Laura - Oh yeah, Anne Rice tweets all the time. Wasn't the game lovely last night (can I call a football lovely? Well, there. I just did). Oh, and Nathan never responds to me either. nope. not once.

Laura Martone said...

That's funny, Steph. He's responded to both of us on his own blog... maybe Twitter is a different universe altogether. I've been on it for eight months, and it still confuses the heck outta me, so don't feel too bad. You're definitely not alone. At this point, I simply use it to push my blog posts... not, in fact, to find out what everyone's eating for lunch.

Joanne said...

I haven't tried Twitter yet for the same reason, the time I fear it may take from writing! But I'm tempted by the good things I do hear.

Steph Damore said...

Laura - I've been hitting the Internet, reading as much info about Twitter as possible. I'm like a little kid fascinated with a new toy. It's so much fun. And I mostly stick with publishing related posts... no lunch updates from me.

Joanne - I don't think it takes any more away from my writing time than blogging does. Now if I could writer faster, that would be truly awesome.

Heidi Willis said...

Hi Steph! I found you on Jessica Faust's blog today.

I love this post because I, too, am bewildered by twitter. I do it. I have followers. I even got a publisher from it. But I still don't get it.

What I do know is that the other person has to be following you to have your comments come up in their feed. Nathan doesn't follow anyone but close friends, so you can write him, but unless he's looking at his @messages, he won't see yours. This is true of most celebrities. They allow you to follow them so you can read their stuff, but they don't follow you so they don't see yours.

As for agents and editors and such - many of them will follow you because they want that interaction. Sometimes they'll reply, but not always just because they have so many people following them and replying. But I would imagine it might make them feel a bit like a celebrity to have people tweeting them all the time, and that's not a bad thing.

Don't be afraid of replying though. That's the whole point of it. If they didn't want people writing them, they wouldn't use it. :)

Voidwalker said...

I cannot give any advice on the Twitter scene, but I can tell you this: Don't ever give a penguin an energy drink!

Steph Damore said...

Void - caffeinated penguins? Do I really want to know??

Steph Damore said...

Hi Heidi - Thanks for stopping by and offering the advice/info. I think I just have to remember that agents and editors are people too and start treating them that way. I'm an excellent people person, so this should be a piece of cake!