I have to say, Crystal is something of a social media rock star, a Twitter party master, and a networking ninja so I’m excited to hear what she has to say today on this topic that tends to overwhelm many of us.
I hope you’ve enjoyed her interviews this week. The amount of interaction she has generated here in the comments and on social media about this series is evidence of the influence she has in the blogging community, further proof that you don’t need to have a best selling book or a full time blog to have an impact.
Before we dive into Crystal’s thoughts on social media and writing, let’s take a peek at her workspace.
Here’s what Crystal has to say about where she gets her work done:
“My workspace is a) in my closet (literally – walk through the bedroom, into the bathroom & into my closet), b) looks nothing like this photo since – let’s be honest – much work happens on the sofa watching HGTV, and c) almost always has a visitor ;)”
On Social Media and Writing
1. How do you keep social media from running your life? Is it a struggle for you? Any social media management tips?
This is a hard question to answer, since most of my job is to build online community with (in)couragers and to help with social media management! Social media does, in a way, run my life – but it also puts food on the table and clothes on my toddler. I still try to stay off the computer when hubs & the kiddo are home – there isn’t much on Twitter that is more important than a little girl who wants mama to read books. I put my priorities in order and discover that “somehow” there is plenty of time left for social media 🙂
I’ve learned a few things along the way:
1. Even though social media is available 24/7 – you don’t need to be on it every hour of the day. It’s ok to put the phone down, to eat dinner with your family, and to get some sleep!
2. Do a little research about the best times to share your posts, learn to love a good scheduling app (I love Hootsuite and am trying to learn Buffer) and create a few interesting scheduled posts to share while you’re living the rest of your life. Then use the “left-over” hours to respond, to thank people for sharing, and to add personal touches when you can.
3. Take time to share posts you love from other writers, comment on their sites, build community, and then watch as your reach grows because – those friends? They’ll start to share your posts, too.
2. What is your writing process? When do you write? How long does it take you to create a post?
I’ve tried a few times to do that “best practice” of setting a schedule and writing “themed” posts for each day of that week. My life doesn’t fit into those boxes, though, so that was a huge failure 🙂 Right now my blog hosts, at minimum, two posts a week: a Tuesday “Behind the Scenes” link up where we share the real life behind the edited/Pinterest-perfect photos we share online, and a Friday “Five Minute Friday” post that I link up with Lisa-Jo Baker.
The rest of the days? I write if I have something to say, if I have a contributor post to share, or a product to review. Some weeks it’s a feast on the blog, some weeks it’s a famine!
3. Do you have a blogging mentor or accountability group (formal or informal)? How have you created and fostered those relationships?
I am so thankful for the mentoring of Lisa-Jo Baker, the (in)courage ninja who has poured into my life the last year and taught me everything I know about building community online. I’m not part of a specific “mastermind” group, but have learned so much from the women in Holley Gerth’s God Sized Dream Team – these ladies know how to encourage & support a sister (and have been some of my VA clients!) and the writers in the Allume contributors group. I’ve learned one very important thing with these groups – it’s not all about me! I can’t just take and take and take – I have something to contribute & give back as well. Anything I’ve learned about social media or blogging I’m happy to share with anyone who asks!
4. What is the best blogging advice you’ve received? (OR) What is the best blogging advice you could give?
All of those times I tried to be like the “big” bloggers? It didn’t work. Be who God created you to be – just you. And when someone else gets that opportunity you wish you had been given? Cheer for them. One day, they’ll be there to cheer for you!
Q & A with Crystal
What questions do you have about social media and writing for Crystal? Click here to share your thoughts or ask your question!