As I’ve mentioned here before, my next book is coming out under a pseudonym — which is energizing and daunting in equal measure. One area where the chickens are really coming home to roost (or going elsewhere to roost, I guess) is in social media.
Because Jael McHenry has her own online world that she’s been building ever since online became a thing, but Pseudonym Me — let’s call her P.M. for short — had to start completely from scratch.
Daunting, yes, but also great. Because starting clean on social media means you get to learn from your mistakes. And haven’t we all made a few?
So here are some do’s and don’ts:
Don’t just replicate exactly what you did the first time around. Don’t follow all the same people on Twitter or draft all the same friends on Facebook. Heck, maybe P.M. would rather focus all her efforts on Instagram. If you focus on doing the same things you did before, you’ll come up short. Take the opportunity to spread your wings. For example, my real Facebook page is a mix of personal and professional information, so I never feel comfortable “friending” people I don’t know personally (though of course I know there are ways to manage privacy settings.) I’ve set it up differently this time around.
Do make deliberate decisions. I love Twitter, and I knew it would be useful for P.M. in all sorts of ways, so that was one of the first accounts I grabbed. But @jaelmchenry follows more than 2000 people, and there is a whole heck of a lot of noise in that number. I built P.M.’s list slowly over time, author-friends here and there, a favorite bookstore or two, the famous authors in my new genre, and so on and so forth. I love food and cooking — as is very evident from my @jaelmchenry feed — but that isn’t a major part of P.M.’s activity, so I’m not following anyone in that area. She’s got her own thing going on. [Read more…]