A Field Of Mines: Publishing Twitter

Post by L.O. Nobi

First of all, I want to start by saying I’m so glad I’ve gotten my blogging mojo back! I hit a serious iceberg on my publishing journey and my creativity ship sank, making me struggle with blogging about this path. Feeling eager now to write this post, made me realize my ship is gradually setting sail once again. 😊

Anyways. Without further ado, let’s delve into this chat: Publishing Twitter.

Before joining the writing community, I was very involved in the Twittersphere with my other Nigerian account. I mostly just used to tweet about music/lyrics and sprout opinions during our infamous boys vs girls wars. But despite what I focused on tweeting, I saw a lot of toxicity there that eventually made me leave.

I stopped tweeting in general for about a year, and then I found the writing community on Twitter—which seemed like the best corner of Twitter for me. At first, it was great with the love for writing and books the main forefront. It’s effective for keeping up with publishing news and all its trends. I also met all my awesome writing friends there. The longer, I spent/spend on the app though, the more I see how it can be a field of mines and how the wrong step can blast you into smatterings.

Publishing twitter these days has become (or maybe has always been) charged and sort of scary. There’s a whole lot of toxicity seeping through there, and once again it’s taking me back to the reason I’d left Twitter the first time.

I totally get it: the publishing crawl can be difficult and long, and seeing writers achieve what you’ve been working months/years for can be tough. But this seems to stir lingering bitterness and envy in many, therefore there’s a kind of waiting for writers to make mistakes or missteps so they can be dragged and cancelled. The moment there’s even a flicker of fault concerning an author, pitchforks are raised and every dirt on that author is dug out, and then there’s a call by other writers for the author’s books to be cancelled. This has happened too many times over the past few weeks and right now, it’s like writers are treading eggshells over there.

Why this rubs on me is that I attended a military boarding school, and one thing I learned there was the strength of solidarity amongst brethren. (Dramatic, yes, but true.) So seeing not readers or the engineering community, or baking community, but fellow writers constantly waiting to see each other trip so they can drag them and rip apart every achievement they’ve made on their publishing path, is just something I struggle to swallow. I mean, it makes you wonder if the tweeps who crowd your tweets to celebrate your successes are truly happy for you, or if they are just poker-faced and waiting for you to fail so they can trump those successes.

It’s really bothersome. Hence, my advises to tweeting writers walking this path are:

• Avoid Drama

Honestly? I personally don’t respect people who are quick to stir up drama or love to speak the loudest when there’s one unfolding, and I believe it’s the same for many people. By being a drama enthusiast, you’re painting yourself in a bad light, both to fellow writers and to potential readers. So just avoid it whenever you can.

Know That Negativity Will Come Back To Bite You

I’m a big believer in karma, and I’ve seen it at work often in the twitterscape. Don’t be so quick to drag people, because your turn WILL come. Why? When you’re so quick to point out other people’s faults, folks will peer at you with microscopic lens. And they will find that fault. It might be now while you’re still working to get published—and it might be years later when you’ve made a name for yourself in the industry. But boy, when your turn does come, they’ll dig out the ‘forgotten’ tweets from months/years ago, and have no mercy when they drag you through the mud.

• You Don’t Have To Voice Out Every Opinion

Because of how capricious the Twitter writing community is, I’d like to say ‘keep a low profile’ but that wouldn’t be accurate because we aspiring authors need some spotlight. But even in the bid to draw attention to your brand and work, it’s not every topic you have to speak up on. I know a writer who speaks on anything and everything, and now? That has turned out to be a negative because there’s a major drama they aren’t even the main party in, but because of how loud they often are, it’s now blowing up for them as if they are the main propagator.

So don’t be a loudmouth. And if thats just who you are as a person, then at least try to keep matters around your name positive or neutral.

The Summary

In summary, I’m not saying bad behavior should be overlooked out of solidarity. But before you drag another writer’s name through the mud, ask yourself why you’re doing it. Ask yourself if the length you’re going to tear them down is fair or if you’re going overboard out of spite. Ask yourself if you are entirely blameless as a writer and how you’d want folks to treat you when you make your own mistakes.

Publishing Twitter really is a mine field so tread it with care!


L.O. Nobi is an avid writer, with numerous novels constantly blinking at her on her laptop. She’s a lover of words, reading, and Disney. You can find her tweeting here, or visit her personal blog here.

Published by Lucia’s Fiction

Novelist and Blogger

19 thoughts on “A Field Of Mines: Publishing Twitter

  1. So happy your creativity ship is sailing again 🤗 I LOVE this post because it is so true. There’s a whole lot of negativity going on in the twitter space right now and I hope it dies out soon—or else it’s just going to get worse. Really good tips!

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  2. This first paragraph touched me and I’m glad you’re getting back up on your feet after facing a hurdle 😊 I hope everything works out great.
    I agree with the tips shared and they are something writers on Twitter should definitely keep in mind. Also wonderful conclusion!

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  3. What a poignant post! Twitter definitely has its up sides, but it’s negative aspect seems to be ruling these days. One way I can advise people to avoid the negativity, is to weed out the followers that bring the most negativity. Mute them, unfollow, or even block. When we first join the writing community, most of us follow every and anyone for engagement or out of solidarity but I’ve found that this isn’t always great. Because then our timeline becomes made up of all kinds of characters, even peoples whose mindsets we don’t agree with.

    I did that some months ago, paring down my following by hundreds and I’ve preferred my account since then. And when the occasional negative post shows on my timeline, I use the features that make sure I don’t see them again. I’ve been enjoying twitter a lot since then!

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    1. Thank you! And this is so true – I did the same recently because the negativity started becoming choking, yet I also need to be on Twitter because it’s great for connectivity/updates for path2pub. So I weeded through my account and my timeline has been looking much better since! Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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  4. I’m so sorry you hit an iceberg but glad you’re overcoming it to keep hanging with us! That’s resilience. This post is so well done and a topic I believe many can relate to!

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  5. I made all my writing friends from Twitter – so it 100% has a plus side. But you’re right that we must be careful to avoid drama. It’ll honestly give you peace of mind to not get ensnared in those. Writing/chasing publication is challenging enough lol

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  6. Happy new month, was happy to get a pathtopublication post to start it, haha. And you’ve said everything so well Lucia.
    Great tips, and I especially love the summary. If it’s a first time mistake and it’s not destructive, then writers should get second chances to fix it! Recently, some of the debuting authors that have been dragged online for one misstep or the other have their soon-to-be-out books already spotting very low ratings on Goodreads because of how fellow writers pounced on them online. Then readers took cue and went to cross out their work, even without reading them. Some of these writers do deserve the outrage, but some others didn’t. And now their careers are off to a rocky start because of *fellow writers* who should understand that we’re not perfect. Sigh.

    Again this is a fantastic post – thanks for sharing!

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  7. This is such a great post! It seems like so many writers glorify Twitter nowadays and it’s important to understand the downsides of it and how you can curate your experience. I’ve never been interested in keeping up with social media so I only lasted a handful of months on the writer’s side of Twitter, even though I had a pretty positive experience. Can I share this post on my blog (a brief excerpt with a link to the original post)? I think this is really valuable content that all writer’s should know!

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  8. I’m sorry to hear about the iceberg, and I hope it’s smooth sailing from here on out! I love your words here because it’s so vital to consider both the good and bad sides of social media as a writer. So much of what we post online these days becomes an extension of ourselves. Tone is so important, too, and I’m always telling my students how difficult it can be to effectively convey tone on social media. I do feel that pull to be on Twitter more often as a writer, but when I hear about the drama, I’m glad that I’m not! I accidentally have a natural tendency to keep a low profile, hah, but I’m working on a good balance.

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    1. Thank you 🤗 So well said, and your students are lucky to be able to learn that! I do feel that sometimes many people who make the mistake of being entangled in conflicts, weren’t aware yet that it could’ve been completely avoided. I have that tendency too! Or maybe mine is just to flee from conflict haha

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      1. I think yours is a healthy tendency! That’s a good point about the people who become entangled in the conflicts. I wish there were more respectful disagreements online, but it seems like it often dissolves into name-calling and heady drama.

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  9. Ah the current state of twitter has me coming back to this post. The Lightlark author might have benefited from reading it 😄 We all need to be careful on those bird streets!

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