Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Hi, I'm @KarenGowen, what's your name?

I started this event at the beginning of summer, with a specific purpose in mind. A kind of goofy idea, using lettuce, but it seemed to work. Actually it's been a blast, I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have. That BBQ was something else. It definitely won the popularity prize and attracted the most people. Wow, it's hard to top that. Especially when all that's left is lame Twitter LOL.

Here's where we are so far on the Lettuce Be Writers Event:

 LETTUCE     WRITE  Top Three: Clarissa Draper, Jennie Bailey & Jennifer Soehnlin

 LETTUCE     READ    Congratulations to Jessica Bell for winning Like Bees to Honey.

 LETTUCE     BLOG    Join the Labor Day Weekend BBQ Blog Party

 LETTUCE     QUERY   Congratulations to winner Candace Ganger for the best query out of 30 entries.

    SHARE   Jemi won Farm Girl & Leah won Uncut Diamonds

 LETTUCE     TWITTER  I'm @KarenGowen, who are you?

 LETTUCE     BUY BOOKS  Congratulations to winner Susan Kaye Quinn: Life, Liberty and Pursuit

 LETTUCE     REVIEW BOOKS  Book Review of Freak Observer by Blythe Woolston

 LETTUCE     HOLD & ENTER CONTESTS  Name the Contest Winner: A.L. Sonrichsen from The Green Bathtub

What to do with Twitter? That's what a lot of us say. I swore I'd never go there, but it's not that bad once you get the hang of it. I use it to:

  • say stuff that is too short for a  blog post
  • promote my new blog posts
  • RT (that means retweet) inspirational tweets I see
  • RT a really good post I read
  • reply to an interesting or compelling tweet
  • follow bloggers I enjoy

What I don't use it for:
  • talking about politics, religion or sex
  • tell you about that day old donut I just ate 
  • wasting time (okay I'm kidding I really do use it to waste time)

Here's the thing. When you're an unknown author with a start up press you better do something. Blogging is fun, I enjoy it. Twitter I do mainly to drive people to my blog. And it works. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have as many followers as I do if it weren't for Twitter. Just another way to network People. It's not as fun as blogging or Goodreads, but hey it's what I do here on the internet. If it's social media, I'll explore it. It might be lame but it's still better than say-- actually leaving the house.

So there, Twitter is done, contest is over. Now. What was the point again? I'll get into that next time, this post is already too long. 

But here's a hint-- it has to do with authors supporting authors-- and how to harness this huge power to help us all SELL MORE BOOKS. Next post I'll talk more about it and that's a promise. So come back on Friday and find out more of what all of THIS ---
is actually leading up to. See you Friday tweeps, peeps and blogger buddies! And bring your friends, bring every published author you know who has a book to sell. Print or ebook, either one. Because this is a REVOLUTION-- authors supporting authors and rocking the entire publishing/bookselling industry. Peace Out (sorry I couldn't help myself)


  1. I'll be honest. I don't enjoy twitter. I've had an account for quite a while though. I link my blogs there, but that is about it. I DO love facebook. That is where I shine! LOL

    I have really networked there and have almost 700 followers there. If you aren't a facebooker, I'd try it out. You'll probably like it better.

  2. Twitter is a total enigma. Some days I'll have a fantastic hour on there, communicating and connecting w/ lots of people. Other days I'll spend a few hours doing NOTHING. I'll be interested to see what you say we should do with it!

    As for Facebook, it's just way too addictive. I've got to avoid it.

  3. I haven't harnessed the power of twitter yet. I plan on it but have failed miserably so far.

  4. Wait, you leave the house? I need to try that sometime. . .

  5. Ready for Friday! And I'm still blindly stumbling around Twitter.

  6. Susan, sure every once in awhile. When I run out of diet Coke.

    Nicole, It takes persistence. The first month I was there I decided I hated it, but I did it anyway. Some days I still hate it.

    Tamara, Basically I said everything I have to say about twitter. The big surprise I'm talking about is the website thingy that's going to launch in about 6 weeks.

    Melissa, That's awesome that you have utilized facebook so effectively. Have you tried linking your fb and twitter accounts?

  7. I have a twitter account, but I haven't quite gotten the hang of it. I'll have to try again. =)

  8. yep am all atwitter with twitter I love it

  9. I've just never gotten the hang of Twitter and don't think I will. Can't wait to hear what you're announcing Friday.

  10. Oooh Friday!! It's a date!!
    Take care

  11. I don't FB...I just can't add one more SN site to my list. I'm already neglecting my family and writing. *sigh* In fact, I'm supposed to be unplugged right now. *just a quick sneak in-sneak out*
    I swore I'd never twitter, and totally didn't get it. But, I finally get extra entries to Carolina's ARC giveaway. (man will I do anything for books) And guess what? I kinda like Twitter. I only go on a couple times/week...or when procrastinating revisions ;)...but when I am on there, I find it fun.
    Yes, plenty of people talk about what they're eating, their kids every sentence, or every move their cat makes, but I just scroll past that stuff.

    I also sort of enjoy the challenge of saying something in under 140 characters. :)

    I haven't really figured out GoodReads yet. I just haven't had time to look around in there or update anything. *sigh* I need more hours/day.

    You accomplished a LOT this summer, Karen!

    Thanks for hosting the blog party. :) I really enjoyed it and made several new friends.


  12. Can't wait.

    I do use twitter to promote my blog posts and to promote others. I'm getting used to it.


  13. I love you, Karen, you know I do. You are responsible for probably about 60% of my blog followers. But even you can't make me Twitter. Nope, can't make me. *making face like kid trying to avoid eating lima beans*

    BUT I'll do anything else you ask. See you Friday!!

  14. Meh. Twitter isn't my favorite. I use it, but it's not my usual cup of tea. Give me my blog or FBook any day.

  15. me no twitter with dumb phone have

    Warm Aloha from Honolulu

    Comfort Spiral

  16. Well, I might try Twitter. Like several here, I have an account, but didn't keep at it long enough to get it. If it becomes too frustrating I'll give up because I've got to focus on relaxing!

    And after my lovely trip to Williamsburg, etc. I've got a lot of catching up to do; reading and reviewing bloggers' books for one thing, and commenting on the blogs of all the new people I met thanks to your BBQ! They are wonderful. Thank you again.

  17. Haha I'm laughing here about people thinking I'm trying to get you on twitter. Sorry to send you mixed messages! I just had to throw something out about it to finish off my contest so I could get the really important stuff.

    AND BTW, don't follow me on twitter because I want to hit 500 on my blog before I hit 500 on twitter. So far twitter is winning, and I don't want it to win because I'm cheering for the blog to win. Yes, I know, I really do need to get out more. Next time I'll go get the diet Coke myself instead of sending my husband.

  18. See you at some point over the weekend!

  19. I technically have a twitter account, but I'm not even sure who I am. @VickiRocho or @MissVSpeaks or ????? And as for the password to find out? Ummm....not sure what that is either.

    I like the idea of twitter, but I think once I got my sea legs it'd be like a drug and I wouldn't be able to leave it alone. So I'm holding off on it for now.

  20. I've used Twitter for a long time but never felt effective with it.

  21. Ah.. Twitter. Bane of my existence. (Well, that's a bit melodramatic.) I'm just not convinced that I'm a good fit. Follow Friday and Twitter book parties seem like spam. And my Twitterview? Not a success.

    There are a few people who are so capable of being funny in a very short form, it is worth it to follow them. So it really does come down to being a place where links to blogs can be passed around. Sadly, I recently noticed that a bunch of people retweeted a link to someone's blog BUT none of them actually posted any sort of comment. Now it's possible that they read the post, but they didn't give the blogger any feedback.

    So that is what I resolve to do the most, comment on blogs. Actually, read and respond.

  22. There was a time when I thought twitter was a waste of time, but it really has some great aspects. One suggestion -- use hashtags and search. If you use a twitter interface like tweetdeck, it's really easy to set up searches for topics you are interested in. It will be far more interesting that way!

  23. Holy crap I just discovered Blogger stats on my dashboard! Looking at it, I can see that much of my blog traffic has come from, either my account or someone else who RT'd one of my posts. Oh, and from Jen at Unedited. I get a lot of business from her too, links her visitors follow to my blog. Due to the fact that she has nearly as many blog followers as twitter itself. Or Oprah. Thanks, Jen!

  24. I'm with Candyland. I have twittered. And I thought...enh. I prefer facebook for the short, fast announcements.

    Looking forward to tomorrow! :)

  25. omg, Karen! I was just griping about twitter the other day. I also do FB, and with the blog and work and pretending to continue on w/WIP3, I just can't go there... yet. :D

  26. I like Twitter a lot - I use it in a similar way to you, Karen, but also to post less formal things that don't warrant a full blog post. I, for one, find Facebook a bit of a drag - too many adverts!

  27. I used to be afraid of Twitter, but now I love it! Especially the #amwriting crowd. It's nice to know that while I'm home alone and writing, I'm doing it with lots of other writer buds!

    Your BBQ was AWESOME! That weekend was so fun, watching all the "Karen's BBQ" comments and blog posts. You're the best.

  28. I try my best with twitter, I read Nicola Morgan's great blog where she gives me Twitter tips, but it still feels forced... But I'm following you, though!

  29. Peh, I'm not a fan of Twitter, but I might give it a try.. in the future. If I can make myself do it. (My last experience with Twitter sucked..)

  30. Ooh I do love twitter when it behaves! Great place to find tips, posts, share laughs and witty banter. You never know who you will connect with.

    And dear lady, when you have some time please pop over to my blog as I have a sparkly star for you!

    Happy Friday! ;)

  31. Well your last post inspired me to get my arse in gear with goodreads and now it looks like I am going to have to do the same with twitter. Honestly Karen!!! So whats next?

  32. Ann, get a book written so you can join the village?

  33. I love Twitter. It's been a life-saver for me and I use it a lot to chat to and give and get support from other writers. It's also a great resource for writing info and other news and a way to find out about some of the great blogs out there.

  34. Gosh you are always so busy! Twitter is good to connect but I find it distracts me from my writing. I have to control my time on there. :)