Jan 20, 2014

A letter to authors using Twitter

Dear Self promoting authors,

I know that its a hard road you are travelling and I know that when you started this writing gig you thought that along with the six figure advance you were going to get all sorts of marketing flunkies that would pimp your book.  Commiserations on finding out that isn’t the case.  I’ll wait while you drown your sorrows in that no-name brand coffee you swiped from the diner.

So you have hit the road hard, dagnamit if you are not going to pull off a miracle while promoting your own book.  You’ve set up the website and the Facebook page and you have found out about Twitter, maybe even paid a little money to buy some marketing software that allows you to auto follow and auto DM other twitter users with form messages masquerading as sincere personalised tweets.  Maybe it looks impressive to a potential agent if you have 3000 followers who you never interact with?

To me this is the equivalent of Junk mail or some crazy dude handing me a flyer at the mall.

I am a reviewer of fiction.  One of the ways I discern who I should read, who I should pick out of the surge of competent authors is by: following and listening to you, the way you behave, how you treat others, how you interact.

So when I get a follow from an author I generally follow back and slip you onto one of my lists.  If after a while I notice you are an interesting tweeter, I might look at the blog or webpage you have cunningly put in your bio (do this, it’s a great idea).

What puts me off more than anything though is the gall of someone who decides that Twitter is a one way street that their time is so precious they will only post promo tweets and and use DM’s to drive people to their website.  What galls me even more is that these authors won’t even read this letter.

I am fricken galled dagnamit.

So I am going to be calm and collected and from now on if you follow me and I follow back and you send me a DM like this :


Hi, thanks for following - very nice to meet you! You can find out more about me and my books via /authorimnotgonnaread.com. Best wishes.


I will report you for SPAM.  Not only will I do that but for gits and shiggles I am going to institute a hall of shame.  I will publically name you so that when people google your name they will understand that your only interested in self promotion, not engaging with readers or community.

You are warned.

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