So I'm on Tumblr, now. Not sure how I'm going to use it. From my initial poking around, it seems to be a blogging platform with a follow and a update feed like Facebook. Looks to be lots of cool things I could post with Tumblr, but the key is figuring out HOW to use it, exactly.
I gotta be honest. I'm very ambivalent about social networking, blogging, Facebook, Twitter, all the rest. Sometimes, these things are kinda fun. Neat to post and comment and Tweet back and forth. And, taking advantage of social networking seems to be the big "thing" that's expected of writers today. Of course, even though it's expected, I don't know if any research has been conducted as to whether or not it actually impacts sales. Far as I can tell, a writer primarily gains readers because of good writing, good reviews, nominations, things like that.
And that's probably why I have a hard time believing that getting all "uber-connected" on social networks helps gain readers and followers, because far as I'M concerned, I could care a less how much a writer blogs, Tweets, Facebooks, Tumbls, whatever. I care about how WELL they write.
Case in point, two of my favorite writers, Ron Malfi and Norman Partridge. Ron doesn't blog at all. Tweets/Facebooks moderately. But he snags Publishers Weekly reviews like a screech owl ravaging for mice, he's a superb stylist, and his most recent novel, The Floating Staircase (I still love that title; makes me think of a Hardy Boys book) is one of the best I've read this year, and has been recommended for a Stoker Award for Best Novel.
Now, take Norman Partridge. No Facebook or Twitter account. He blogs, but mostly about stuff he loves. Most of the time, he's busy WRITING. And he's doing just fine, isn't he?
Some days, my finger just hovers right over the "delete" button on my Facebook. Sometimes I want to nuke Twitter. I don't, but I just can't help thinking that sometimes, all this stuff takes away from what I should be doing most, as a writer - writing and reading. Even now, typing this blog post, I could've been reading Headstone City, by Tom Piccirilli.
So, given all that, I gotta really figure out WHY I want to use Tumblr. If I can find a real personal use for it, something that's me and not a shallow attempt to network, then I will. Maybe some of my really lame poetry? Maybe photo blogs over the summer? We'll see. Because there's no point in trying to reach an entirely new audience on an entirely new social networking site if I don't have anything worthwhile that I WANT to say....