Thursday, January 10, 2013

Finding Balance, the 2013 edition

What drowning in social media can feel like.
Water, Glacier NP Photo by Adam Englehart, used under cc license

I spent a bit of time thinking about goals for the year in this post at the end of December, but it was more in comparison with what I had and hadn't accomplished for 2012.

As the year starts, I've been giving more an more thought to what I want to accomplish and what is realistic to work toward. One of my personal goals--and it impacts my writing goals--is to sit less and be more physically active. What this means in real terms is I need to spend less time noodling around the net. There is an endless stream of content flowing past all our social media sites: twitter, FB, G+, Tumblr. There is an abundance of interesting people saying interesting things.

But if I spend all my time reading and engaging with them I won't get my work done.

And make no mistake, my work is writing.

If I need to limit the number of hours I'm sitting at the computer, I'm not going to limit my writing time. But I also don't want to be a hermit. An active social media presence is pretty much a requirement for today's writer. It's a matter of balance.

If the amount of time I spend on the 'net NOT writing is greater than the time I spend writing, then I have a problem.

I'm trying to look at my social media time in two ways. One, as an extension of my writing persona and a way to let people know what I'm working on. Two, as a virtual water cooler where I can connect with other writers and creative folks. But publicity and coffee breaks need to be the smaller percentage of my workday.

I'll know I've gotten the balance right when I get more writing done in less time. In 2012, I was able to draft a novel and a half. In 2013, I'd like to draft 2 full novels. It should be doable, given my typical writing pace.

Today’s post was inspired by the topic “2013 Goals/Anticipation”– January’s topic and theme in the Merry-Go-Round Blog TourIf you want to get to know nearly twenty other writers and find out their thoughts on goals for the New Year, you can find links to all of the posts on the tour by checking out the group site. Read and enjoy!


  1. You and I have come to the same conclusion, and I don't think we're alone!

  2. I hired someone for our company to do the social media. I am so busy, that even my personal social media is limited to once a week.

  3. Hi, Lisa, I do agree that social media can be a time consuming effort. Which is why I find the option to connect one platform to the other very useful. Connecting a blog to Twitter, Facebook and Google+ not only saves me time on repeating myself, but can also generate traffic to a particular post and garner interest from my target audience. Write once and be able to reach more.