Editor's Note: Tweet Dreams
One night recently, I woke suddenly, due to a horrifying dream about … do I dare admit it? … Twitter. The dream made no real sense; I was tweeting—or posting, for you non-Twitterers—quotes from various people in the book publishing industry, one quote after another, but I couldn’t post them fast enough. I have similar work/stress-related dreams quite frequently, but I was amazed that I had one about Twitter—tweeting is one of the simplest things I do. So why the tweet dreams?
I realized it was because it’s new and outside my comfort zone. Twitter links you to all kinds of people—some you know, some you don’t. Your friends and possibly your frenemies. Your tweets are permanent and reach a sizable audience, depending on the number of followers you have. I am an editor, used to contemplating about and filtering everything I write and publish. Twitter is supposed to be fast, spontaneous.
I realized that, like me, you, as a book publisher, have lots to adapt to in this way. I also realized that the quotes I was dream-tweeting were real (if not word for word), and most were about change in the industry. I decided not to recreate my tweet dream by actually tweeting these quotes, but I thought they were worth sharing, so I dug them up out of my many notebooks and decided to share them here, in print, where no bizarre dream is waiting for me. I hope they stay with you as they’ve stayed with me.
“Listen, listen, listen. There’s a reason we have two ears and one mouth.”
—Eric Qualman, author, “Socialnomics,” during his presentation at BookExpo America (BEA), regarding the importance of connecting with your audience through social networking communities
“Books are strangely social.”
“I think the idea that the Kindle will be the only device [out there] is silly. The danger is the development of a monopoly, in that someone is sitting between [publishers and consumers].”
—David Steinberger, president and CEO, Perseus Books Group, during BEA’s CEO panel