Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Being a Good Literary Citizen



As a writer, I have discovered that writers like to hang out with other writers and writer types. Maybe we are all a bit insane, or maybe we just understand that certain something in each other that pulls us in to the field, but whatever it is, we find ourselves in a circle, a community I will call it, of like minded souls.

But being a part of a community assumes you are a citizen; and being a citizen means responsibility. Citizens support one another, they don't just take and take, they give as well. And that brings me to the point of this post: Being a Good Literary Citizen.

Publications, ratings, obvious site traffic are important to us. It gives us visibility, which in this new world of 'marketing yourself' is very important. Granted, I don't share or comment or tweet everything I see from those in my community because it would be overwhelming, but I do as much as possible, and hope when I need a little love, it will be returned.

Fictitious Mary is a member of my community. She shares and comments and tweets and rates and buys books from other members. She reviews, she shares, she gives the love. She is a good citizen.

Now let me tell you about fictitious Rudy. Rudy likes to hang in the community, but for years, Rudy hasn't shared, voted, commented-nothing on anyone else in the groups work. Now Rudy has a book out and is finally in a position where he needs a little extra help, too. Let's see, when I'm picking and choosing what to share, is it going to be a link to Rudy's debut novel or Mary's blog post about her cat?

Sorry, Rudy, kitties rule.

Of course, there is a lot more to being a good citizen than just the things mentioned above, but these are easy and take very little of your time.
    
In the past day, I've tweeted 5 blogs, rated and commented on three short stories, one book, two blog posts, shared three Facebook stories, 'liked' an author page and edited another short story--all for the members of my community. Aside from the editing, this took me less than five minutes of my day.

Why would I do this?

Because I am a member of a literary community and I take my responsibility as a citizen very seriously.  

So the BIG question is:

What kind of a literary citizen are you?

16 comments:

Jerri Clayton said...

A damn good one ;) I work hard at it, but I enjoy it. I also appreciate the reciprocation. Off to tweet your blog now, Kelly!

drleo37 said...

Amen, GLC!

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

You are a great GLC. We need T-shirts.

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

Preachin' to the choir, right DRL?

Christopher Chik said...

Love this blog so much. I mean, there's no bats or anything, but this is what I'm talking about. It's not hard. Networking: an autistic kid can do it, anyone can.

Suzanne Shumaker said...

I learned to be a literary citizen from YOU. I share, comment, etc. as a daily practice. I enjoy doing it. I sometimes even do it for the "Rudys" out there. Hopefully this blog will reach some of them. Thank you, Kelly, for being such a patient teacher.

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

"An autistic kid can do it, anyone can". I. Love. It.

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

That's sweet, Suzi. And probably the first time anyone has ever called me patient. :)

Susan E. Kennedy said...

Thanks for the reminder, Kelly! As busy as our daily lives are, it's easy to say we don't have time to read or comment or re-post, but we need to remember that time spent will come back to us in a helping hand later. I also like hearing about what everyone is doing. I never thought I'd have so many friends spread across the country, and that I'd be able to keep up with them from my desk!

Rob Greene said...

And thanks to all you lit-cits who shared the link to my story. I will try to remember your faces when I become pretentious.

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

Right, Susan, we are all so busy. And I'm not saying this should or has to be a part-time job. But if someone sees something that is easily shared, they should try to, or at least comment on things. It doesn't have to be everyday, just an effort.

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

Pretentious seems to be the word of the day...

betweenasleepandawake said...

I do what I can! Great blog post, Kelly, as usual. :)
Jen

Kelly Stone Gamble said...

That's all anyone can do. Do what you can, right?

PMMP said...

I try to be a good citizen. But it took me three minutes to read your blog. How on earth do you do all of that in 5 minutes?

Darren Cormier said...

Great post and a good kick-in-the-ass to those of us who are probably more accurately within the OLC community (Okay Literary Citizen).