Renee Writes

#IWSG – Learning to use Twitter

I know social media isn’t the best way to promote your work, but it is great for networking. Learning to use it properly, so you don’t waste a lot of time is the trick though, and it’s what I’ve been working on lately (when I’m not writing). The hardest part for me is knowing what to say…

I schedule basic tweets to go out, like promotional stuff, my blog posts, author spotlights that I do and things of that nature. But it’s not enough. You need to connect with other authors. It’s easy to just reply to people who reply to one of your tweets, or even to reply to someone else’s if you have something (hopefully nice) to say. It’s another to know what to tweet that doesn’t involve promoting something.

When I see what others talk about, I think… oh this is easy. I can do this. Then when the time comes, I sit there looking at the screen thinking, “I have no idea what I’m supposed to type.”

I try to talk about what I’m doing, especially when I’m writing or editing, but most of the time I forget. Lately I’ve been leaving Twitter open so every time I get the urge to say something about what I’m doing, I just have to click over to my browser and start typing. I even have a list of hashtags to choose from so I can reach others through my tweets.

Hashtags, I’ve learned in the last several months, are extremely important. They’re how others on Twitter find topics they want to engage in. So learning which hashtags to use has been the second hardest thing for me.

At first I would start typing in different keywords with the # symbol to see if it came up on the list. I figured if it came up, it was a hashtag that was used often, and this is mostly true. The problem is, there could be keywords I’m not even thinking of that are better. So my search began for the hashtags everyone’s using.

One way is to just watch which hashtags other authors are using. Check out those searches and see what is being shared so you have an idea of where and when to use that particular hashtag. I did this for a while, but it still seemed to be taking up so much of my time. I could spend hours researching popular hashtags for authors.

Then Joshua Robertson gave me a link to a site that listed some popular ones that authors use: 44 Essential Twitter Hashtags Every Author Should Know

From there I’ve made three lists. One is hashtags used for connecting with readers, one is for connecting with other authors, and the other is general indie publishing type hashtags. I’ve since done occasional searches for other lists, and I keep updating it, since hashtag popularity changes and new ones are always being used.

It’s so much easier now that I have the lists though. Sometimes, I even read through my hashtags for inspiration on what to talk about.

Here are my lists for those who are interested:

To reach readers:


Industry Tags:


Writing Tags:

#1K1H (1000 words in 1 hour)
#WriterWednesday #WW
#WANA (We Are Not Alone)

Are there any hashtags you use (not listed here) that work for you? I’d love to add them to my list! Please share them in the comments and have a great month! Happy writing (and reading)!

Oh, and don’t forget to read some other great #IWSG posts here!

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  1. 9 March, 2017    

    Good list of hashtags. It’s taken me a while to figure that part out, but I’m starting to get it. @mirymom1 from
    Balancing Act

    • 9 March, 2017    

      Thanks! Yeah, I’m still trying to work it out.

  2. 8 March, 2017    

    I sometimes use #notwriting. It’s fun to see and connect with other writers who are procrastinating. Makes you feel less alone and guilty for not writing. Of course you should be writing. I also like using hashtags to share and talk about your writing like #2BitTues, #1LineWed, #WIPjoy, etc.

    • 8 March, 2017    

      Awesome, thanks! I’ll have to check those out. 😀

  3. 5 March, 2017    

    Oh, also, unless someone has already suggested this, you should try adding funny gifs to your tweets. They tend to get more attention than those without. Check out a few of mine to see what I mean: @raimeygallant.

    • 7 March, 2017    

      Cool! Where do you find the gifs?

  4. 5 March, 2017    

    I recognize you from Twitter, so you must be doing something right! Also, um, awkward, but I’ve also been working on a Twitter hashtag master list. It’s pretty long, and I’m still working on it, so we’ll see if I ever get it posted. Keep up the awesome posting Renee!

    • 7 March, 2017    

      Awesome, that’s so cool! 😀 Let me know if you ever publish your list. I’d love to see it.

  5. 3 March, 2017    

    Love this list! I really appreciate it. I also use: #writingprompt which isn’t as popular, but I like to post prompts and I have a prompt book out so I find it useful.

    • 7 March, 2017    

      Thanks! Hope it helps. I use that hashtag as well at times. It seems to waiver in popularity.

  6. Thanks for the list! I’ve gotten better about using hashtags. They do make a difference.

    • 7 March, 2017    

      No problem. Yes, they do. They’ve made a huge difference for me. 😀

  7. 2 March, 2017    

    Hi, Renee! I’m so out of it, I don’t even have a twitter account. But your # suggestions are great! Happy writing in March!

    • 7 March, 2017    

      Thanks! I love using Twitter, but it’s taken a while to learn how to use it effectively. I’m still learning. 🙂

  8. 2 March, 2017    

    Great tips! I use hashtags, but I feel like the only people who find me that way are spammers!

    • 2 March, 2017    

      I had that problem at first too, and I still get spammers, but I’m getting more genuine replies lately than spam, so I must be doing something right. 😀

  9. 2 March, 2017    

    I sometimes am in a hurry and don’t use all the hashtags I should. Silly to not take the time. Love your list and am sharing it.

    • 2 March, 2017    

      I was doing that too, and realized it was a mistake. That’s why I wanted to start making the lists and categorizing them. It makes using the hashtags easier and only takes a few extra seconds to add them to the posts now. I use OneNote to do my writing calendar and I have all my lists in there as well so it’s easily accessible.

  10. 2 March, 2017    

    Thank you for this post. I don’t Twitter yet, but I need to learn if I’m going to participate in the IWSG Twitter pitch. This post will be bookmarked!

    • 2 March, 2017    

      No problem! And thanks… I hope it helps when you do start using Twitter.

  11. 2 March, 2017    

    Great lists! Twitter stumps me too sometimes 🙂

    • 2 March, 2017    

      Thanks! I think learning to use social media effectively is always an ongoing process, especially since things keep changing.

  12. 1 March, 2017    

    Figuring out how Twitter works is an ongoing process. Have you tried out Tweetdeck to schedule your tweets? You can even edit your scheduled tweets if necessary. Oh, it’s also free to use 🙂
    #MondayBlogs is a good way to share your blog posts that aren’t about your writing (no self-promotion, but it’s a good way to get more traffic to your blog).
    I also use #FolkloreThursday for my folklore posts – it drives a ton of traffic to my blog every Thursday.
    #SundayBlogShare is also a great way to share your blog posts.
    Also, mixing in retweets and tweets of other people’s content between tweets about your own writing can up your Twitter engagement (remember to @mention them if you’re tweeting their blog posts).
    Happy tweeting 🙂

    • 2 March, 2017    

      I used to use Tweetdeck, but it confused me a lot. Maybe I had too much going on at the time. I use Statusbrew now to schedule my posts, which makes it much easier for me. I like to engage with people directly too, though. Thanks for your hashtag and other suggestions. I’ll add them to my list. My Monday blog posts are generally writing or promotional tips, so that will work out.

  13. 1 March, 2017    

    Great post and information. I know a little but really not enough to understand what is going and keeping up, but may give it a shotl You should check Ramiy Gallants IWSG post she posted about twitter and listed author chats.

    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit

    • 2 March, 2017    

      Cool! Thanks for letting me know. I’ll check out her post now. 😀

    • 5 March, 2017    

      Thanks for the shout out Juneta!

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