We live in unprecedented days when the available methods of communication are abundant and cheap. It’s easier than ever to connect with authors that you appreciate. But there are so many. How can I know which authors I should follow on facebook?
First up, let’s deal with the question–
Why I should follow authors on social media at all?
Let me just say straight up that some authors are great on social media and some aren’t.
There are only 168 hours in a week, after all. Many a great writer is focused. They write. Everything else is periphery.
Of course, they have to deal with the limitations of their time. When they get to the point when they have thousands of fans who want to communicate with them, it becomes an impossibility.
But, there are plenty of emerging authors who have time for fans. Some established authors, as well, are committed to responding to fans. But communicating isn’t the only reason to follow authors on facebook.
Some post thoughtful, insightful or beautiful images and words for everyone to enjoy for free.
There’s a lot of different types of writing. Interacting with people on social media is a lot different than outlining a novel. Some authors are (gasp!) extraverts. They love the back and forth quick wit retorts. Others need to hunker down in their ivory towers to crank out the good stuff.
All that to say, some authors are worth following.
For the rest, just keep up with your librarian or bookseller to find out about new releases and read what they’ve published. It’s their best stuff and it’s where they put the time in. It’s why they’re good.
How did I choose the authors for my list?
They’ve written at least one book that I love
Yep. You got it. This is a biased list. And, I admit to being a fiction snob. There’s scads of books that other people love that I don’t. So, yes, it’s skewed toward my tastes.
But, in general, these authors and the books I love are not unearthed out of obscurity. They have lots of fans.
They have a following.
They’re active on facebook
You might think this goes without saying. But, some authors that I like and admire don’t have a facebook page at all. I’ve looked them up on instagram and, yes, they will make my instagram list if they’re active and worth following there.
They have the potential to write a lot more great books
I loved Tara Westover’s memoir, Educated. Fascinating, inspiring, brilliantly written. I don’t know what Tara has planned for her future, but she’s told her life story already. Of course, there’s aspects she didn’t cover, and her life’s not over yet. But, I get the feeling this isn’t the first in a series. She’s not a novelist who will be cranking out two books a year for the next thirty years.
Read Educated. It’s excellent. But, I wouldn’t follow Tara Westover looking for the next best seller to top the charts.
I picked authors to follow who are interesting people or who are doling out information about upcoming new releases and other bookish news.
As far as I know, I like them as people
Some of these authors are new to me and I don’t know a lot about them. I have definitely quit reading authors after finding out something that wasn’t a good fit for me. Maybe I’ll drop some from the list who are on it now.
But, as far as my knowledge at this point, I stand behind these authors.
An exception to that rule is Anne Lamott. I can’t think of anything she’s said politically that I agree with. And from my point of view, a lot of her theology is screwy. But her writing is so quirky, so hilarious, so human I just can’t help but stand in awe at her giftedness.
They are primarily full-time authors
There are thousands of people who have written great books. Many of them do other things. They don’t write for a living. These authors do.
They are alive today (with one exception)
C.S. Lewis has an active facebook page.
He’s been gone for decades.
He’s also one of my all-time favorite authors. Apparently, there’s a lot of people who feel that way. So, he has a following on facebook. He was so prolific, that it’s easy to keep posting quotes or trivia or discussions surrounding his books ad infinitum.
I can’t quote a source, but I heard during my bookseller days, that not a single C. S. Lewis book has gone out of print since its was published. That. is. amazing.
And, now, on to the list.
Which authors should I follow on facebook in 2020?
The Widows of Malabar Hill is one of the best books I’ve ever read. Set in 1920’s India, based on the history of the first female lawyers in the country. Great story, great characters, fascinating cultural and historical setting.
I have yet to read more of Sujata Massey’s books, but if Widows is any indication, I’ll be a long-time fan.
Before We Were Yours tells a difficult story. Crimes against children are heart wrenching. Somehow, Lisa was able to tell it in such a way as to offer hope in the midst of unspeakable pain. That’s a tall order, but she does it well.
Lisa Wingate is a prolific author. She’s won the right to be the top of the heap by perfecting her craft.
Sharon M. Draper
I’ve only read one of her books, but she has written many.
In Out of my Mind, I thought she did a great job of getting inside the mind and thoughts of a physically challenged girl. It felt real. Amazing story line as well and satisfying ending.
Amy Lynn Green
Amy Green is not a bestselling author. She’s written middle grade fiction in the past. She’s about to release her first historical inspirational fiction. I’ve had the privilege to read the first chapter of her new release, Things We Didn’t Say. Half way through that first chapter, I connected with the main character.
She’s an emerging author. Keep your eye on her. She could be the next Lisa Wingate. I’ve known Amy her most of her life, so I know where’s she coming from and I can recommend her to you.
Heather K Morris
I’ve only read one of Heather Morris’ books, The Tatooist of Auschwitz, but I appreciate her work on this important story. The further we get from World War II, the easier it is to forget what happened. We are losing our eye witnesses. It’s so important to get their stories while we can and to never forget what happened, and most importantly, how we got there.
I’m not a big fan of Seabiscuit, but Unbroken is one of the best books I’ve ever read.
The articles I’ve read about Laura Hillenbrand’s writing process have been fascinating as well. She struggles with health issues and does incredibly detailed research on her books and works on them for years.
Even though I don’t agree with Anne Lamott politically or theologically, I am in awe of her talent. Her writing is so quirky, so hilarious, and so human. Pure delight.
If you’re new to Anne, Bird by Bird, her memoir of the writing life is one of my favorite. Operating Instructions is another great one.
Every once in a while she’ll post a rant or essay on facebook that is worth the whole price of admission.
C. S. Lewis
C.S. Lewis is one of my all-time favorite authors. I think The Chronicles of Narnia is the ultimate in children’s literature. I was surprised to see that he had a facebook page, since he hasn’t been walking this earth for decades now. But, it is well deserved. And now I’m a fan.
I’m indebted to Jeff Goins for a lot. I went to his third Tribe Conference in Franklin, TN. I’ve read most of his books, I follow him on social media and I appreciate his vulnerability, insight and instruction. His book, Real Artists Don’t Starve was especially thought-provoking. Follow him if you’re interested in writing, speaking, influencing or becoming a thought leader.
Michael Hyatt’s going to be most helpful if you’re leading a team or heading up a business or looking for leadership advice.
In my opinion, his groundbreaking book was Platform, introducing the concept of how to build an audience of followers in the digital age.
The planner I’ve used for the past two years is one that Ruth designed. She’s a New York Times Bestselling author, even though her latest book didn’t hit the list.
Here’s my theory: she’s grown past the majority of people and now she’s only talking to the minority. When her books were about saving money and making money and building a business, she had lots of attention.
Her latest book, Do It Scared, is about facing your fears. Honestly, I think most people just aren’t ready for that. Humanity is a pretty spineless bunch as a whole. That’s my theory for why fewer people are buying her newer book compared to her older ones.
Priscilla Shirer is best known for being a Bible Teacher and has produced many Bible Study workbooks. She has also done some acting in the Kendrick Brothers’ Christian movies, including their newest one, Overcomer.
I’ve done quite a few of Beth Moore’s Bible Studies. Her teaching has taught me so much. Some studies have just been over the top incredible.
I’ve also read her one novel, The Undoing of Saint Silvanus. Every genre takes a different set of skills. She’s gifted in writing Bible Studies.
I’ve only read one of Lysa’s books, It’s Not Supposed To Be This Way. But, I admire the way she is able to connect with so many women and feel their pain and offer hope. I also admire her courage to share (albiet selectively) her current story and her current pain.
I loved David Platt’s most recent book, Something Needs to Change. The book was written from the notes of his personal journal during a trip in the Himalayas.
Platt was overwhelmed by a first hand experience with a dark corner of the world in desperate need, spiritually as well as physically. He eloquently invites believers into his pain as the first step to impacting the world.
I know he’s been a pastor and served a stint as president of The International Missions Board for the Southern Baptist denomination. Now he’s a pastor again.