Authonomy – Social Network for Writers
Social networks for writers are a great idea – I should know, I run one myself. There are various specialised social networks for writers on Ning.com and they do provide a service the bigger social networks like Facebook can’t. On a specialised network writers can find each other and make contact more easily, and if the network is organised right the good writers do rise to the surface and show so that the publishers who join can find them. I’ve seen two authors picked up by publishers in this way so it can be done.
Authonomy is a little different to many of the specialised social networks for writers because it’s organised by HarperCollins. However, that doesn’t show from the interface as it’s set up in a way that’s just like a standard writers’ network. You can join, create your profile, promote your writing (published or unpublished), join in with discussions on the forum and upload your writing to share and get feedback. Members are also encouraged to recommend their favourite books, and favourite writing by other members, and the books can be from any publisher.
I joined and will be using this site and would recommend it to any writer. I also believe publishers should be looking at these social networks to find the talented authors – they do rise head and shoulders above the rest. A difficulty can arise if these social networks also get so large that they have a similar problem to that created on Facebook: too many writers and pieces of writing being submitted to showcase so they get lost in the crowd.
It will be interesting to see if this site does lead to authors being talent-spotted, and if not it’s still a great way to meet other writers. The social network approach seems almost compulsory nowadays for many types of business, and I think all publishers should be providing this kind of site. The articles with helpful advice for writers are especially useful.
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