Jeff Pearlman

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Why Twitter Matters (to me)

About two years ago, I committed myself to ending my Twitter account.

I found the medium annoying and distracting. Here I was, trying to write a Walter Payton book, spending too much time Tweeting this, Tweeting that. I went so far as to actually end my account, and told my, oh, 1,500 followers that I would be committing Twitter-cide.

Ultimately, I changed my mind.

Now, I’m on Twitter all the time. As I sit here and write, I keep Twitter open in an adjacent window, Tweeting away when I’m bored or a though pops into my head. Do I still find it annoying? Not really. Distracting? Definitely. It’s sorta like computer crack. And yet, whereas I once considered it to be of little value, I now realize it is, for an author, invaluable.

Why? Two reasons:

1. Name a better reach-out-directly-to-readers tool? Seriously, name one. I certainly can’t think of any. MySpace is long dead, Facebook is heading in that direction, Instagram is sorta lame. With Twitter, I literally can say to 7,581 (my updated Follower total) people, “Book’s coming out!” or “Here’s a preview!”

2. This isn’t discussed much (if ever), but landing a book deal isn’t merely about an excellent idea. It’s about an excellent idea’s potential to sell. If I can meet with a book company executive and say, “Look, I’ve got 100,000 Twitter followers to talk books with,” well, I’m a million times more marketable and impressive. Literally, by people following me on Twitter, they’re helping my career; my ability to live a beautifully charmed and wonderful life, kicking back at a Starbucks, traveling here and there to research, etc.

As a result, I try and follow everyone who follows me. If they’re doing me the honor, I should do it right back.

  • Dave G

    I’m curious why you say Facebook is heading the way of myspace

Showtime Book
Love Me, Hate Me Barry Bonds Book
Sweetness Walter Peyton Book
The Bad Guys Won Book
The Rocket that Fell to Earth Book
Boys Will Be Boys Book

Once again, Jeff Pearlman has produced an exhaustively researched, elegantly written book that re-creates one of the most colorful and memorable teams of the modern era. No basketball fan's bookshelf will be complete without it.

— Seth Davis, author of Wooden: A Coach's Life