Three challenges authors face in social media

At last year's Sydney Writers' Festival, the effervescent Anna Maguire hosted a panel session called 'The Author As Everything' (at the Forest for the Trees seminar).

Not only do we expect authors to pen their own books, in the day and age of self-publishing you can also be expected to source editors, direct your own cover artwork, get media publicity, arrange a speaking circuit and reviews, and manage your distribution channels.

And throughout the publishing process, it pays to think about building your author platform, including engaging in social media channels, as well. 

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We need to keep it real.

Not a week passes without the media posting yet another story of the rags-to-riches entrepreneur, businesswoman or artist who reflects on their time as a bankrupt failure while backstroking in cash from their gold-plated lap pool. 

I love those stories, so I read them. But I rarely read about failure from someone's who's in the middle of it - although I reckon there would be plenty of wisdom to impart from the bottom as well as at the top.

Similarly, on Facebook, we generally talk about the quirky stuff, the fun, the get togethers, the things that give us enjoyment in life. No-one likes a killjoy, right? But then there's studies like this one mentioned in The New Yorker about how Facebook makes us unhappy. 

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