For quite some time now, I’ve been thinking about creating a social network for writers. I’ve been on the fence about this for several years, but am really considering it more as of late. But, would it be something that interests people?
I really don’t know, to be honest. After all, most of us writers simply use Twitter, Facebook, or even Instagram. However, those platforms just seem to be missing something for me.
I’m not really sure what it is, and I am wondering if I could build a social media platform specifically targetted for freelancers and creatives.
Why Make a Social Network for Writers?
I haven’t done too much research on looking up social sites specifically for writers. That’s because I don’t want my decision influenced by something that’s already out there.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll do all kinds of recon work of writing platforms if I truly decide to set one up.
So, what’s driving me to think seriously about social media for writers?
Meeting Like-Minded Experts and Professionals
I know LinkedIn is already available for professionals. In fact, that’s how I gained my most prominent client to date. And I am part of a writing community on Twitter full of great people.
But as I mentioned above, these platforms are just missing something for me. And I hate not being able to put my finger on what.
I enjoy hanging out with my peers. It’s one of the reasons I loved going to WordCamps in person for GreenGeeks. And general social media sites are just that, more generalized.
At a WordCamp, everyone there is all about WordPress. You know what to expect and meet people who are focused on using, creating, or further developing the system.
I guess my point is that I would like a more central locale to meet others who are authors, freelance writers, bloggers, and writing experts.
Perhaps one of the best ways to advance yourself as an expert is to learn from an expert. Who knows, someone might share a process that vastly improves your ability to write for content mills.
Not to sound like a broken record, but again, this is why WordCamps are awesome. You can get a few ideas to improve your own experience by listening to others and sharing.
I would love to experience something similar from a writer’s perspective.
In reality, this idea of “sharing” is why I built WriterSanctuary.com and its YouTube channel. I love helping people and want new writers to go into freelancing with realistic expectations.
That’s how humans evolve and grow; by learning from each other. And like the Borg, we can assimilate the best parts of each other to improve our own knowledge and skills to a superior level.
Resistance is futile!
Free Resources and Marketing
I would love to build up a site full of free resources and ways to market as a freelance writer or author. Though, I’m kind of putting that together on WriterSanctuary.com.
But what about contributions from others? Sure, there’s a comment form on every post someone can fill in. But I was looking for something more.
The hard part is not turning the site into a writer version of Craigs List. That site is saturated with very…questionable content and people.
Would this include a job board for writers? I’m not sure, actually. I’ve been asked to build something like Textbroker from several writers. But if I did, it would be more of the lines of connecting writers directly with clients.
Meaning that the site would simply be there to connect clients with writers and nothing more.
Would the Social Network for Writers Allow Creativity?
I’m not sure if I’d allow creative posts. This is because of the legal ramifications involved should someone steal another person’s work. I simply don’t have time to hunt down everything, file lawsuits, go to court, or stress about plagiarism.
Keep in mind, I already have a full-time job. Besides, there are plenty of sites out there for creating works as an aspiring author.
Personally, I prefer Wattpad. It’s a free and easy-to-use system that helps you build an audience. I’m not sure if I could improve on its platform.
Now, if I could only finish VII and move on to other writing projects.
Another aspect of creating a social network for writers is that of nostalgia. OK, so, I am about to deliver how old I am…
I remember BBS networks from back in the day. These are Bulletin Board Systems that acted much like a localized “Internet” before the Internet was a thing. You’d access a computer running the BBS software and interact with others.
This interaction was often one message at a time as most of the BBS platforms I accessed only allowed for one inbound connection at a time.
Usually, I’d join a BBS that centered around a specific niche or interest. All of the content, messages, chats, and more focused around a certain topic.
Now, I definitely don’t need the high-pitched squeal of a dial-up modem accessing a remote computer. But the premise behind what the BBS provided is where I’m drawn.
Where to Set Up a Social Network for Writers?
Setting up another website wouldn’t take long at all. But when it’s an addition or extension to WriterSanctuary.com, that’s when things get a bit sticky.
Of course, I could just make the networking site its own monster.
Currently, I have three primary methods of which to create a social network for writers:
Initially, I was thinking about creating a social network for writers using WriterSanctuary.com. I use WordPress, which makes it incredibly easy to add a social media feel by using a few plugins.
With a couple of clicks of the mouse, I could open it up as a social media hub of sorts. But, I’m not sure how adding a huge mechanic like that would interfere with what I already have on the site.
As a Subdomain
Using a subdomain is another idea that has been rolling around in my head. It gives the site its own presence online and explicitly links it to WriterSanctuary.com. So, the URL would be something like “social.writersanctuary.com,” or something similar.
And, since the social network is all about writers, it fits with WriterSanctuary.com’s niche very well.
Buying Yet Another Domain Name
And lastly, I could always just buy another domain. I have unlimited space at GreenGeeks web hosting, so creating a new website would only cost an extra $15 or so per year.
But, then I would start to have a growing list of domains like one of my old clients. Except, I at least have some kind of content on the ones I own…instead of just buying them and letting the sites sit idle for decades at a time.
Is a Social Network for Writers Something that Interests You?
In reality, perhaps it’s a better idea if I stabilize a few of the sites I have before jumping into a new project. I still have plenty of content goals yet to achieve, and my time is probably better spent focusing on those domains.
After all, three of them are actually pulling in a few bucks per month. If I get them to really bring in the dough, then I can work on my own sites full-time and set up a social media hub.
Eh, or this could just be me thinking out loud in blog format to help me reach my word count for the day.