WWWednesday: August 22, 2012

This week kind of has a theme: Different ways authors interact with their audiences online

One of the wonderful things that I love about social media is getting to know authors a bit more. For example, YA fantasy author Lisa Mantchev posted the following on Facebook:

Dear Pinterest: Even the fairies are appalled at how much glitter you people are using. And yes, they count Epsom salts as glitter. They are now hording the stuff against the coming Sparklepacalypse (to which, contrary to popular opinion, the Cullens are not invited.)

Even without reading her books, that status update gives you a great idea of her personality and writing, don’t you think?

Also, do you use Pinterest? I love it! So addictive. If you’re not familiar with Pinterest, it’s basically a computerized corkboard system that allows you to make boards for all your favorite topics. For example, I have a Nerdery board, and a My Ongoing Love Affair with Books board. I haven’t noticed a lot of authors using it yet, but I do see a lot of cover art getting pinned, and while I know I am supposed to be above such things, pretty cover art has suck(er?)ed me into more than one novel.

If you’re not friends with authors on Facebook, you can follow a lot of authors on Google+ by following them. (This is similar to Facebook’s subscribe option.) Cherie Priest, Patrick Rothfuss, Diane Duane, Laura Anne Gilman, David Brin and Brandon Sanderson all keep fairly active public presences on Google+ and/or Facebook. It’s a great way to keep abreast of what your favorite authors are writing and sometimes drinking, eating or watching on Netflix.

The other big venue for authors is blogs. Most authors now have websites that they use to promote their work, but some of them are more entertaining than others, because beyond just book info, they will give you a great look into their lives and the work of a professional author. Some author blogs that I particularly enjoy include those of Gail Carriger, Catherynne M. Valente, Patricia Wrede and N.K. Jemisin, who gave us this beauty of a post on the Weird Tales fiasco that has been has been happening for the last week or the last several months, depending on when you want to date the beginnings of the meltdown. If you really want the inside news on what’s going on in the world of fantasy writing, author blogs are the place to be. Most authors have blogs and websites. Most have links to their blog on their website, but don’t think that they are the same thing!

A great example of a fan-(and family)-run website is JackVance.com. It includes biographical information, a photo gallery, wallpapers, and high quality ebook versions of Jack Vance’s work. New titles are released each month.
And I’m not even going to get into Twitter, because I refuse to add one more thing to the timesuck that is the internet.
So, my dear readers, do you use social media to follow your favorite authors? Any favorite blogs or particularly witty Facebook feeds? And do you use Pinterest to document your book or fantasy habits? If so, leave links in the comments. Help us find the best of the web together!

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RUTH ARNELL (on FanLit's staff January 2009 — August 2013) earned a Ph.D. in political science and is a college professor in Idaho. From a young age she has maxed out her library card the way some people do credit cards. Ruth started reading fantasy with A Wrinkle in Time and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe — books that still occupy an honored spot on her bookshelf today. Ruth and her husband have a young son, but their house is actually presided over by a flame-point Siamese who answers, sometimes, to the name of Griffon.

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  1. Sarah /

    Some of my favorite blogs are Helen Lowe, Frank Tuttle – love his sense of humor, Larry Correia, and Patricia Wrede. I do follow a couple of authors on twitter. I haven’t done much on facebook, but I think I will check out the Google+ and see what that looks like.

    I don’t use Pinterest much, but I do use Goodreads to track books.

  2. I love Mike Brotherton’s blog, talking all about Science and the general populations interaction with it. Also, like Sarah, enjoy Frank Tuttle’s and also love the homemade artwork on H. O. Charles’.

  3. Can’t. Read. Everything. Must. Stop. Sometime. My ship. My crew . . .

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