An Author's Twitter Dictionary

I began tweeting at the end of last year, and still consider myself fairly new to the Twitter world. One of the first challenges I encountered was the use of hashtags. I wasn’t quite sure which ones to use that would be most effective, or appropriate to the content I was sharing. In the beginning, I noted the hashtags frequently used by authors and readers, and used these in searches when I was looking for something specific or other book-related Twitter accounts to follow.  During this process, I came across some hashtags I didn’t recognize.  I generated a list of these. And then, I figured the list might be helpful to others, so I added a few more to the mix, listed them alphabetically, and created a limited Twitter dictionary. Hope it's helpful. I plan to continue to add to/update it, but between the day job, writing, and kiddos, it may not be as frequently as I'd like. If anyone knows of additional hashtags for authors or updates to these, please feel free to add them in the comments section. 

Listed below are the hashtags I’ve become familiar with that relate to the writing, marketing, and publishing process or books in general. I’ve also included links to sites where more information can be obtained on several of these. 

*Note, that these are presented in relation to the writing process. Some may be indicative of another meaning in a different context. However, these hashtags are typically used in conjunction with another writing hashtag to avoid confusion (for example: #pitmad #YA).

Twitter Hashtags:

#agent This hashtag relates to a literary agent, and can be posted by an agent or an author who is in the process of seeking an agent or is posting information related to an agent/agent request.

#amwriting I’ve found this hashtag helpful for connecting with other authors, and followers interested or involved in the writing process. Created by Johanna Harness, it is a shortened version of “I am writing.” Here is a link to the creator’s site with more information: Johanna Harness

#amreading  This is another good one for connecting with followers who are interested in books and reading. Many authors (myself included!) are as passionate about reading as they are about writing, so connecting with other like-minded followers can be productive and motivating.

#amediting  Using this hashtag lets others know that an author is in the editing process. This hashtag can also be used in a search to identify tweets on the editing process and links to helpful articles as well.

#askagent   This hashtag is used to connect authors with agents, particularly when a question requires insight from an agent. I’ve also seen it used when articles are posted that contain information or recommendations from agents in the field. Here is a link with more information on this one: Litrejections  

#authorlife  Used to relate content to the life of an author.

#bookgiveaway Use this hashtag to help readers find book giveaways or market your own giveaway.

#CB Denotes chapter book

#CF Denotes Christian fiction

#CL Denotes children’s literature

#CR Denotes contemporary romance

#fridayreads  Use this hashtag to share what book you’re reading on Fridays.

#friendFriday A hashtag that can be used to suggest another author to followers. From what I gather, it initially related to friending someone’s Facebook page but now translates to followers on Twitter as well?

#FollowFriday or #FF A hashtag used on Fridays to suggest Twitter profiles that you recommend.

#HF Denotes historical fiction

#HOR Denotes horror

#litagent  Denotes literary agent and can be posted by an agent or an author who is in the process of seeking an agent or is posting information related to an agent/agent request.

#MG Denotes middle grade

#MSWL    Literary agent Jessica Sinsheimer started the hashtag MSWL, an acronym for Manuscript Wishlist. Since her initial tweet, more and more agents and publishers are using this hashtag to express their preference for certain types of works or genres. These types of opportunities are an incredible benefit of Twitter as they provide real-time reports on the types of projects an agent or publisher is actively seeking.

#NA Denotes new adult

#NaNoWritMo This hashtage relates to National Novel Writing Month, which takes place in November. Here is a link to more info: Nanowrimo 

#onelinewed  Writers from all genres participate in one line Wednesdays. Each week, Kiss of Death @RWAkissofdeath tweets out a theme (e.g. smile, eyebrows) and writers share a line from their work-in-progress that highlights the theme/word in it. The facilitator of this event notes it is not about advertising, so rather than buy links, websites can be included. It's generally designed to be fun for authors who have the opportunity to engage on Twitter and share their works.

#PB Denotes picture book

#pitmad  This hashtag is used during a pitch bash on Twitter where authors tweet a 140 character pitch for their completed, polished, unpublished manuscripts. See link for more information and additional hashtags used to denote genre’s:

Book Baby    Brenda Drake

#pitmatch  A hashtag used to connect authors with a polished novel that they are ready to pitch with agents actively seeking submissions. Similar to #pidmad, but there are differences, so make sure to familiarize yourself with the rules. Here are a few helpful links with more info:

Brenda Drake    Pitchmatch    Manuscript Wishlist

#pittopub  This hashtag can be used for writers to tweet a pitch for their completed and polished manuscript(s) directly to publishers. For more info: Pit2Pub 

#PR Denotes paranormal romance

#publishing Used to identify information related to book publishing.

#querytip  Tweets containing this hashtag often contain useful information on the querying process and tips for success.

#RS Denotes romantic suspense

#RWA Denotes the Romance Readers of America nonprofit trade association.

#SF Denotes science fiction

#UF Denotes urban fantasy

#WF Denotes women’s fiction

#writersconference  Used to promote or share information related to a writer’s conference.

#writerwednesday  This hashtag can be used to acknowledge other writers, particularly ones that you recommend or enjoy following. It is also used to report writing related activities on Wednesdays.

#writetip   This hashtag can be used when seeking or providing advice on the writing process

#[insert current month]WordChallenge  Looking for some motivation to stay on your writing schedule? This may be a helpful hashtag. Each month participants join a 500 word per day challenge. The monthly challenge originated when Kristy Acevedo tweeted an invitation to join her in writing 500 words per day for the month (in July of 2014), and remains quite simple. Write at least 500 words per day and post your results each day using the current month’s hashtag. For more information visit: Writing Challenge 

#YA Denotes young-adult fiction