The debate as to whether the Internet is good or bad for literature doesn’t seem any closer to resolution now than when it began, years ago, but the fact remains that some people in the literary world are excellent at using Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and even Instagram or Pinterest to communicate with readers and get people interested in what they’re writing. These aren’t the writers who have hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers but only tweet when they have a book come out, or the ones who write a guest blog post every year to get their names back into the conversation.
Some are young authors, others are firmly established. Some of them are publishing industry veterans or new media superstars who want to use their clout (or Klout) to talk up writers they love, while others command small armies via their Tumblrs. Some start hashtag trends, while others have scored book deals with their clever tweets.
Whatever it is they do on the Internet, these 35 people do it better than anybody else in the book world, and that’s why they help steer literary conversations and tastes.
It isn’t easy making it onto the New York Times bestseller list with your second novel, but Straub did it with The Vacationers — the perfect book to bring with you on your summer getaway. Straub also has spent the last few years cultivating one of the strongest Internet presences of any writer. She tweets, she’s on Tumblr, she writes for Rookie, and she pops up even when she doesn’t have a book to promote.