This week’s guest poster is the lovely Jackie Baldwin, author of Perfect Dead. She talks about her early tentative steps into the Twitterverse. Enjoy.
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AN AUTHOR IN THE TWITTERVERSE
Just over two years ago anyone who knows me would have gone into a betting shop and gladly placed a bet against me ever going on Twitter. I thought that people who tweeted must be completely bonkers.
Two years before that I’d been dragged on to Facebook kicking and screaming by the author Graham Smith. He told me that if I ever wanted to be published I needed an online presence. I later discovered my privacy settings were so strong that only I could see my posts, (all two of them).
Imagine then the irony of someone like me getting a book deal as a digital author! After the initial euphoria I peered at the small print and saw that I had to be active on social media platforms!
My husband was as clueless as I was so I sent out an SOS to my son Alex who came and sorted me out a Twitter account. It felt a bit like ‘first contact’ with an alien species as I sent out my quavering, ‘Is there anyone there?’ into the Twitterverse.
At first, it was a lot like talking to myself. Then, I started to get followers. My phone would ping and I would jump about a foot in the air filled with an impending sense of urgency, a form of conditioned reflex.
On the day that my first novel, Dead Man’s Prayer, was published, I remember sitting until 4.30pm in my dressing gown with no time to even drag a comb through my hair as all three devices pinged at me. I have a horror of being inadvertently rude so every night I would stay up until the wee small hours, writing lists of people to thank for retweets.
I am not someone who is comfortable with the whole ‘Look at me! Buy my book!’ thing. However, I have no qualms about retweeting other people’s stuff and helping them. They then reciprocated and before I knew it I had found my tribe.
I had worried about trolls and all the online nasties that are meant to lie in wait, ready to pounce. Touch wood, it hasn’t happened. I deliberately steer clear of politics and anyone who seems aggressive. There’s enough of that in the real world. I was very excited when I realised I could follow the stars of my favourite TV shows like Dark Matter and get involved in the fight to save the show. I love science stuff, robot stuff, animal stuff and, strangely, bench stuff.
I’ve met some charming people in the old fashioned sense of the word who I can have a bit of a laugh with. I feel like a member of a community. I have made a particular small group of friends from around the world that I feel have my back and I have theirs. We have a hilarious chat across our disparate timelines and a few of us have even managed to meet up in the real world.
Two years later, I have 5600 followers and follow a similar amount back. My second novel, Perfect Dead, is coming out on 15 June so I have to poke my head above the parapet and be a little more visible than I feel comfortable with. The great thing about Twitter is that I always feel that each tweet is like a tiny cork that flows out into the ocean and is immediately engulfed by the waves. Blink and you miss it.
Each murder brings him one step closer to the perfect death.
Ex-priest, DI Farrell is called on to investigate a gruesome death in rural Scotland. All evidence points to suicide, except for one loose end: every light in the cottage was switched off. Why would he kill himself in the dark?
The question sparks a murder investigation that leads to the mysterious Ivy House, home of ‘The Collective,’ a sinister commune of artists who will do anything to keep their twisted secrets hidden.
And when the remains of a young girl are uncovered on a barren stretch of coastline, Farrell realises that there is something rotten in this tight-knit community. Now he must track down a ruthless killer before another person dies, this time much closer to home…
Connect with Jackie
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Big thanks to Jackie for her guest post and as someone who was also dragged onto social media screaming, I can completely understand how she felt.
Hopefully, this post will encourage those other writers who are still unsure about dipping their toe in the social media pool, to give it a go.
Please check out Jackie’s links and leave any questions for her in the comments below 🙂
I’ll be back tomorrow with a Blogger Series article, see you then 🙂