If there is a problem in literary fiction, it may be that some of our best writers have missed out on one of the most exciting and transformative moments in American letters. Social media is primarily text-based; it propels people to write more than they have in decades – centuries, perhaps – and it is complex, fluid and resistant to simple conclusions. No wonder so many writers love it. Luckily, I now know many of them, and with them I talk, alone in my study.
Social media forces us to get to the point, to write short and succinct sentences. More importantly, it’s a great way to connect with like-minded people.
I don’t think established authors like Jonathan Franzen who rip social media remember what it’s like building a fan base from the ground up. But if you’re looking to build a name for yourself, use self-promotion sparingly and share interesting content that lends credit to others.