So I have been having some success with Tumblr lately. Despite it being very fandom heavy, it is possible to expand your audience using this website just by being socially involved with other users. This sounds like complete common sense, but when I say Tumblr is fandom heavy, it is super fandom heavy. You have Dr. Who, Sherlock, Hannibal, Homestuck, John Green, ect… It seems like unless you’re established already, you can’t possibly hope to get anywhere. But I am, slowly but surely. And it’s been worth it. People are excited about my book.
Every night, when I’ve finished with my writing, I like to open up my Ask Box on Tumblr for Anons and questions in general. They’ve all been about writing and publishing, and most of them are from young writers, which excites me because they are my audience and it’s just amazing to see talented, driven young men and women wanting to make it in the same field I am involved with.
In any case, I heavily adore the young writers.
- They don’t take it for granted that being published is awesome. It is awesome being published. Granted, it’s not earth-shattering or life-altering, but it shows you worked your butt off to get your manuscript to a place of publishability (this is a word now, says me). I feel like older writers get so caught up in sales and how difficult it is to get published, that they forget there is a sort of magic to knowing you’re getting published or that you are publishing–both traditional and self-publishing. It’s just plain awesome because now you can make money doing what you love, and it’s even more awesome knowing that people you don’t even know are reading your book. Young writers don’t take this for granted and feel like it’s an amazing thing to be talking to a published author–or an author publishing or about to be published.
- They look up to you. Seriously. They do. And it’s a freaking amazing feeling to know that you are a role model to these younger writers. If they love what you have written or can’t wait for your book to come out, they’re going to look to you for guidance. They’re going to go to you with questions. For me, I answer them as honestly as I can. I don’t like to claim I’m an expert in my field. I really don’t feel it. I’m simply a writer and that is all, but I will help whenever I can.
- There is some talent out there. There really is, and it’s awesome to watch as they grow and improve, and, in some cases, surpass you. I know I want these young writers to surpass me because I feel like books do make the world a better place, just for the messages they instill. The better that these young writers get, the more these messages can mean something, the more interconnected the world will be. I think.
- They are intelligent. Reading snippets of what some of these young writers write on Tumblr has shaped my own writing and keeps me in the voice of a teenager. I feel like I will forever be writing YA because it is the one genre I love to read. So reading some of these teens’ writing helps me to get in the mindset of a teenager for my own writing because a lot of teens write about themselves.
- They want to know what you’re writing. I get this all the time on Tumblr. What are you writing? And of course I have no qualms talking about it because I’ve already written it. But I keep it to a minimum.
- They are curious. This is perhaps my favorite thing about young writers. They want to know everything there is to know about writing and the publishing industry. They want to know this from experienced writers. Of course, as an experienced writer you have to gently tell them to do the research, but it’s still cool to know that they want to know it from you.
- They have an intense interest in books. Seriously, I’ve never seen such fiery passion about certain books from young writers–or readers, really. They really want to talk about their favorite books, and I have no problem with this because their favorite books are often mine. I mean, I love John Green, and I love that there is a fandom for him composed of young readers and writers. There is so much fan art of his books, and that is freaking awesome because it keeps you as a writer dreaming of others doing fan art of your own book one day.
So these are just some of my favorites things about young writers. What are you favorite things about writers in general?