I hear myself saying this a lot to people–if social networking isn’t fun for you, don’t do it. And I’m serious about that–I have fun here on my blog, fun on other people’s blogs, fun on Facebook and fun on Twitter. And, yes, if you add them up in some fancy mathematical equation, it’s way too much fun.
I don’t know about fun with LinkedIn. I’m there, and I check in every so often, but–honesty–haven’t figured that site out yet. If you have a brilliant epiphanetical revelation for me about it, please do share. So…I wouldn’t rate LinkedIn as high on my fun scale, but it doesn’t cause me any stress either.
Unlike Goodreads. Or, to be more specific, the current state of my Goodreads account. When I first signed up for GR, I did like it. For a long time, I liked it. And then, I think, I let myself be sucked into the social-networking shoulds:
- You should use X to market your book
- You should link your blog to X
- You should friend lots and lots of people at X, especially if they send you a request
As a small piece of social networking, these should are true. But, and here’s the important thing, I think–we can’t do everything everywhere!
I like Goodreads because it gives me a place to rave about a book I love, and the site makes it super easy for me to share that rave with people on…yes Facebook & Twitter. I like Goodreads because, when I’m running low on book ideas, I can scan people’s lists and get ideas. Except, as it stands, there are way too many people and way too many lists for me to do that. My site is clogged. So do I use Goodreads for the part that makes me happy? No. Am I using Goodreads productively for social networking? Definitely not.
A while ago, Sherrie Petersen announced on her blog that she was stepping away from Facebook. As much as I like it out there on FB, Sherrie’s post made it clear that this was a great choice for her. And that doing a reality check every now & then about our social-networking habits can be sanity-making.
Time for me to back up. I’ve decided I will no longer use Goodreads as a piece of my social network. I’m not closing out my account, but I will be going through my list and deleting quite a lot of the people there. Most. This feels a little bit like crossing people off the wedding list because the park isn’t big enough. (Yes, we had our wedding celebration in a park–where else can you find a big enough BBQ pit?) And that part isn’t the best feeling.
The part about just leaving people on the list whose book recommendations I really, really want to see sounds great. I often get a craving for some seriously great fantasy–I know who’s list I’m going to go to for those. I am on constant look-out for new MG and YA and PB books; I’m going to keep some big readers in those genres. Mysteries, historical novels–I need a steady feed of suggestions.
But that’s it. If you read my blog and if you friended me on Goodreads and if you find out you’re no longer on the list (is that even possible), I still do want to talk. Come find me on Facebook or Twitter, where I’m having actual conversations! For me, Goodreads needs to be the quiet corner of the public library, where I quiet-as-a-whisper pass books back and forth with a few like readers.
What’s overloading your right now? Is there a piece of the social-networking pie that you’d feel happier (and lighter) without? Drop into the comments & share your thoughts. Or don’t! 🙂