Thursday, July 28, 2011

It's My Party and I'll Invite if I Want To...

Heaven knows I don't need more social media. I love facebook, but it can suck the time right off my clock. I do it because I love connecting with people there. I write something, they write something back. Also, it is great for news. I find out what celebrity died within minutes of them dying, what books are climbing the Amazon bestseller list for mysteries (my friends Stephen Parrish and Deborah Reed, thank you very much), and also what recent naked burglar was caught in my hometown.

And twitter I just don't get, because it's got the attention span of a flea. Seriously. I read somewhere that a tweet has the life of something like seven minutes. Seven minutes after you hit the enter key, it's not likely to be read. Ever. By anyone. Writing something on there for me is like throwing a thought into the universe knowing that the only one to hear it will be God.

Then there's blogging. And despite how little I write nowadays, I hope y'all know the affection I have for you. True, heart-swelling affection. I loves you.

But now there is something new, and I admit (and not even ashamedly) that I am on the bandwagon.

Google+ is here.

Okay - so the party is a little empty right now. For a while one had to be "invited" by someone on the new site to get in, so there aren't a lot of people yet. Also, social media users want to know why they should add it to their already full media line-up.

This is how I think it's different: it allows you to put your contacts into circles, an artistic way of saying groups, and then post your thoughts to just that group. In other words, I can post all my writing stuff and not bore my church friends with it. Also, I can post my thoughts on faith without offending my writing friends. I can post family stuff for my family without fear of people I don't know seeing it.

It's something between facebook and twitter - where you can have a broad spectrum of contacts without it being too hard to keep up, and can write more than 140 characters but less than a blog post.

This is where I'm going with this ... I think it has the amazing possibility to turn into a great writing forum - a sort of online writing group. Twitter moves too fast and requires a brevity that doesn't lend itself to this. Facebook feels very broad to accomplish this. Blogs are time hogs. (I love you, blog, but you know you are!)

But Google+ sets up the perfect scenario for conversations about writing.... ones that are much briefer than blogging.

We can bat back and forth quick questions for everyone to chime in on: What's the hardest thing about writing for you? Have you tried writing in a different genre? Are you having a good writing day today or a hard one?

We can bat tips back and forth: Cut as many adverbs as possible. Write the first draft without self-editing and let it be okay for it to be utter poo.

We can post inspiring quotes. (Okay, I know people who do this on twitter, but then how often do you comment on those, or how often are they more than 140 characters?)

We can encourage each other.

And all in much less time than blogging. (I'm not disparaging blogging. I LOVE y'all, remember?? But it does take a time commitment if you want to read or write more than a sentence or two)

Anyone interested to give it a try? If you want an invitation, let me know (with your email address) and I'll send one. (a shout out to new blogging buddy Jade who sent me mine). No obligation necessary.

And if you're on Google+ and you aren't in one of my circles, why not?? Let me know and I'd love to add you.

After all, a party of one is just sad.


  1. I like the idea of " circles" of friends. If I had a party of Facebook friends I think their would need to be a mediator wondering through the crowd. Sure, sign me in!

  2. I feel the same way about Google+. And I love the circle of friends set up as I add people. It'll be interesting to see where it goes from here, yes? And sure, we should be in each other's circles!

  3. My hubby jumped on the google+ bandwagon and invited me. It looks better than facebook and twitter for all the reasons you mentioned. I just haven't done a darn thing yet with the account, other than sign up. But feel free to add me to your writerly circle, Heidi. I will happily return the favor soon. Like when I get out from under a looming deadline at work.

  4. I feel the same way about Twitter. I'd love an invite, Heidi!

    scubacor (at) aol


  5. I'm on there but haven't really found anything to do yet. I do like the circles thing, though.

  6. I LOVE the idea of putting my friends into circles! That sells me on Google+ right there.

    I have avoided Twitter and am not likely to change my mind. It seems rather pointless to me.

    I love my blog and I love FB, but really...there is only so much time in the day to spend on these things. One must write, eat, spend time with family, read, work, etc.!

  7. I keep hearing more and more about this. It really sounds great. I think I'll give it a try. I'd love an invite if you would :)

    Thanks Heidi!

  8. Oh Heidi, this is wonderful, I was just wishing for someone to send me an invite ....

    many thx for doing this!

  9. I LOVE the circles idea in google+...that being said all I have done is put people in circles. Someone said you can link your fb posts and your google + posts. I haven't figured it out yet. I'll be looking for you.

  10. I'm glad to get the 411 on google+. I am not a twitter fan and I barely find time for FB any more. I love the social media stuff, but find that sometimes it takes up valuable time. hmmm - to find balance would be wonderful. You don't know me - I just found your blog but if you'd like to invite me I will check it out! :)

  11. I'm on the fence still.

    I think they've probably made the perfect blend of social media stuff, but I'm going to be late to the party...

  12. I'm there! And I'm happy to have LOTS of people in my "fellow writers" circle and to be in yours if you'd like to have me.

  13. I'm still not there. I keep hearing about it, but I'm a creature of habit. I like what I have now and I'm so scared for something else to keep me busy from writing. LOL

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  15. Gosh, were you a used car salesman in a previous life? Hook line and sinker. nicole at luckyphotographer . net

    Oh, and I just deleted my previous post to fix a typo...I'm a little anal today.

  16. Hi Heidi! I'm giving you an award on my blog! Come check it out!

  17. I have never heard Google+ explained before. It sounds awesome! Sometimes I think Google is trying to take over the world.

    I'm kinda okay with that.

  18. OKay, okay.
    I THINK I'm ready to get set up.


    jolenebperry at gmail...

  19. Clearly, I have been neglecting my blog for months, due to the fact that it's such a time commitment. I'm getting bored with FB and I don't even know what Twitter is or does. Sign me up!!