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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > August 2016 > The business of writing: Social engagement

The business of writing: Social engagement

Frittering time on Twitter, or legitimately working? Simon Whaley dodges the cute kittens to find out.

Although the first tweet was sent on 21 March 2006, it was four months later, on 15 July, when Twitter became publicly available. Since then, writers all over the world have been tweeting about their latest blockbuster, the joy of edits, and the cutest cat photos they can find.

Social media and writers are not always happy bedfellows. At worst it can swallow several hours that would have been better spent writing, or it becomes nothing more than a continuous sales platform of Buy my latest book! because that’s what our publishers tell us to do.

And when one survey suggests writers who regularly use social media sell more copies of their books, irrespective of whether they are traditionally published or self-published, another study reveals the click-through rate from social media to authors’ websites is woefully low and therefore a complete waste of time. So when it comes to our writing, is there a business case for using social media platforms?

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Earn from your writing and get published: Cash prize competitions, calls for submissions and writing opportunities in 20 pages of Writers' News Discover your inner writer Cut to the heart of your novel – without losing the plot Social skills: Learn to use your online time to the max 10 top tips to get your book published and keep it selling Reader successes: Readers share their success stories Meet our publishing deal competition winner Star interview: Prize-winning poet and author Kei Miller on writing without boundaries

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