Gail Whitman peered through the one-way glass at the small, barren room. A man sat alone amid the whitewashed concrete walls, neon striplight buzzing above his head. If the furniture wasn’t bolted down he would have tipped himself over onto the floor by now, but instead he sat chewing on one pink dreadlock, rocking back and forth to the rhythm in his head…
Another minor writing first this week – I got approached by a recruiter. While I wasn’t interested in what he was offering, it was nice to know that my skills are in demand. Come to think of it, a couple of clients have come back to me with new work in the last few weeks, making this the most demanded I’ve ever been. Brilliant!
I don’t want the job back in an office cranking out technical writing for a company. But it’s nice to know that it’s an option if I ever get sick of free-lancing (doesn’t seem likely right now, given the fun work and control over my lifestyle). And it’s a timely reminder that I should be making an effort to use social networks, as that’s where so many of these opportunities come from.
Both as a fiction writer and as a freelancer I need to be connected in to social media. Sadly I can’t rely on the quality of my writing alone to sell it, or on the structures of a traditional workplace to provide me with productive, paying things to do. As a naturally humble person this is something of a pain. I don’t want to be getting in people’s faces, but I need to. And it can lead to interesting conversations and opportunities, as well as helping me grow by getting outside my comfort zone.
But there are so many ways to do social media these days it feels overwhelming. Should I be tweeting, linking or pinning? Is Google+ the great leap forwards its advocates claim or the backwater some still believe it to be? If I tried to follow every piece of advice I’d lose my mind, not to mention every waking hour. It feels ridiculous, but it’s the life I’ve chosen, and I must pay the price.
I’m sure in a few months, once I’ve spent some time properly testing social tools for my current lifestyle, I’ll feel a lot better. But right now I just long for verbal conversations and sales by merit.
Of course I’d also like a golden house and an endless supply of chocolate biscuits, but that isn’t happening either.
Anybody got any advice? What works well for you? What do you love or hate social media-wise? Help me find the forest, because right now all I can see is these blasted trees.