Social Media, Writing and Me

Here I sit on a Friday night. A few months since I have been home from college trying to find my way with still searching for a job, my passion and, ultimately, myself.

I admit, I am not good at this blogging thing. But that’s because this is my first time actually doing something like this. Stepping out of my comfort zone and sharing my thoughts in this form. Social media, I guess, was the first step that led me here.

I was never big on showcasing myself out there or talking about myself because I don’t like attention. I have always considered myself old-fashioned because me and social media? It’s a love-hate relationship. You will probably never see me on Facebook. Instagram? Tried it for a couple weeks but felt it was too distracting. Snapchat? Eh. Never got into it. You get the idea.

But I do have Twitter, and frankly, got it because I wanted to follow David Archuleta XP don’t deny that sometimes you only get a social media account just to follow someone you don’t even know. You’re probably thinking “ok we get it you and social media don’t work so why this conversation?”

Because of what you can find, create and ultimately discover about yourself. Not just as an artist, but as a person. Ever since I came home, I’ve looked at Twitter differently. One of the best perks I ever received was using this platform to connect with myself more in my writing. I follow publishers, writers I have befriended, writing websites, bookstores, Poets and Writers, Writer’s DigestPublisher’s Weekly and more to actually FEEL like I am a writer instead of just saying I am and not really getting much done. Plus, it has been great motivation when I DO get stuck and provides me with even more resources to turn to! But, I have realized following these resources has led me down an unexpected path: wanting to say hey I’m a writer and being proud of it!

My social media has taken on a new life of its own. Yes, I sometimes tweet about Archuleta haha, the news, cats, what I’m reading and whatever else comes to mind. But writing? I want to be taken seriously. We all want to be taken seriously and have our work loved and praised by the masses in whatever shape or form there is. I don’t like tweeting about my writing even though I should.

Maybe that’s the next step in this strange adventure.

But where does the line get drawn? Why do we care so much when celebrities fall from grace and have trending parties? How much change has happened because people use social media to get their stories out there? To bring the news in many more ways? To celebrate and remember those we have lost?

Social media, from the writer’s perspective, is an ever-changing learning experience. You get so deeply involved that you fear missing out when you’re away from the screen. Yet, we all need a break. I recently tried to take a break…and I lasted one day. I also been attempting to unplug on Sundays…and that lasted a week. It’s a hard thing to balance, and to me, has become more important in terms of your work to be up to date, in the know and so on.

So as I continue to maintain and better understand the world of Twitter and how I put myself out there as a writer…I have to take it one day at a time and learn when I need to step away to recharge, and be in the know so I can get work out there and keep up to date with posts that will help me as they help my fellow writers.

I am forever grateful for the connections I made with writing site Pen and Muse, discovering websites such as The Write Practice, keeping up to date on my favorite authors and discovering places to submit my work. But, we all need a break and to tell ourselves it’s OK to not know every single thing every day. It will be there tomorrow…plus, if you’re subscribed to some sites, you get the emails anyway! It doesn’t just apply to famous people or the news of the day, but to us creatives too.

This wasn’t meant to be a rant piece about the relationship between writers and social media. Because everything in life has its pros and its cons. You just have to take the good, remember what’s important to YOU and work on connecting through your art.

Because the real world and YOUR life matter. You just have to keep trying, and yes, failing to find that balance. Until you finally find what totally works for you.

How do you feel about social media? Does it help or hinder you? In what ways? What should writers keep in mind in today’s ever-growing technological world?  Have you tried taking breaks from social media?

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