Dear agony editor,

With the recent controversies around Twitter, I think it’s a good time to close my account. I’ve been on the platform for about 10 years maintaining my author profile, but I’m tired and disinterested, and I’m not sure being on Twitter has done me much good. I’m also afraid of going unnoticed. Should I stay or should I go?


on the fence

Dear on the fence,

I don’t think you should be on Twitter if you don’t want to be there.

I understand that most people have mixed feelings about social media, but if there’s no value or enjoyment for you, shut them down. Life is too short to sit tediously trying to compose tweets. And while social media can help you maintain a profile, I’m not at all sure that an author plays a vital role in boosting book sales. They can help publicize their work, but ultimately it’s the readers, not the writers, who drive a book’s popularity.

Before completely deleting your account, I suggest you take a break. Delete the app from your phone, but keep your account active. Make him a promise not to check on him for a while. Then use this time to monitor your feelings. If you miss Twitter, come back. If you don’t, delete it.

No matter what you decide, your greatest contribution to the world isn’t your social media posts: it’s your books. That’s really your goal – to engage, provoke, question, inspire and connect with people through your work, not your tweets. There are plenty of authors who aren’t on social media who seem to be doing well.

I realize that success can seem precarious at the best of times, and many writers fear falling into obscurity if they are not visible. But there are also advantages to having a low profile. And sometimes the less people know about you, the more interesting you seem. Give yourself some time, decide what’s right for you, and then make peace with your decision. And never allow yourself to feel pressured into doing something in the name of success – it’s the surest path to unhappiness.

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