The Social Media Catch-22

4 Feb
Abigail Cash

This guy has probably been trying to figure out how Facebook Insights work. Good luck, dude.

Catch-22 is an amazing book, and one that I had to read twice before I started to get the hang of Joseph Heller’s complicated prose. The gist of the true Catch-22, of course, is paradox.

In Heller’s book, John Yossarian wants to be declared unfit to fly combat missions during WWII. Pilots who volunteered to fly crazy, suicidal missions would be considered insane, and thus unfit…but in order to be declared insane, you had to ask for an evaluation. Too bad that asking for an evaluation was a sign that you were sane. A Catch-22.

I started my new job this week. It has been awesome, and I’m sure that it will be a great fit for me. While I feel like I’m drowning in new information, I know that will pass. The problem that I’m struggling with is something silly, and one that I guess really can’t be considered a “problem” in any normal sense of the word.

Because I’m busy at work, I can’t engage in social media to help connect with other writers and grow support for my work. I’m still in the editing phase of my first novel, but my goal is to start querying in the spring. I’d like to be able to continue the tweeting and the facebooking etc etc…but social media seems like a full-time job! And I just got one of those. Things were much easier for my writing career when I was under-employed.

Of course, I could slow down on the social media, and take a break. But then a new problem arises. From what I understand, a social media presence is practically required these days to get a book deal and then sell your books. If I cut down on networking through social media in order to focus on my book, I could potentially be hurting my book’s chances!

The circular logic makes my brain hurt a little. Maybe I am over-thinking this. I am a baby author, after all, and I have a lot to learn. Any advice?


8 Responses to “The Social Media Catch-22”

  1. hap February 4, 2012 at 4:46 pm #

    You’re a writer? Write. Everything else will fall in place.

  2. ParticularStone February 4, 2012 at 10:17 pm #

    I agree with Hap. Your book is the product, the main focus. I’ve seen you on social media and your are engaging and cheerful and energetic. If you have to “media” before or after work or on weekends you will still do fine.

    • abigailcash February 4, 2012 at 10:18 pm #

      Thanks, David. I think I just get worked up about all the media buzz these days and then worry I’m not doing enough.

  3. Rachel February 5, 2012 at 10:13 pm #

    Give it 5 minutes a day if that is what you have. Don’t let it freak you out! Congrats on the job.

    • abigailcash February 12, 2012 at 8:05 pm #

      Thanks, Rachel! It seems like every little bit helps 🙂

  4. Jennifer M Eaton February 11, 2012 at 4:35 am #

    Social media is a HUGE time suck. I spend hours here a night. I’ve finally decided to map out my evenings, even including certian time to spend with my kids. If I don’t… all I will do is blog, and nothing else will get done.

    Time management. It’s important. Sticking to it is hard,though.

    • abigailcash February 12, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

      I have such a time management problem when it comes to my personal life, Jennifer! I admire your ability to lay out a schedule like that.

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