The platforms that...matform?

In the comments to Henkel's post on Konrath's blog, someone took him to task rather sternly for not having "a platform." By which they did not mean a structure made of wood that people could stand on, but rather an Internet presence that was not strictly about marketing his books. Yes, said the person, you are on Twitter, but your posts are all just "Buy my crap!" and that's not enough for people! You've got to open up and reveal yourself!

I don't know about that--isn't it enough for Henkel to, you know, write stories? I mean, I obviously think Konrath is doing a real public service with his blog, but he's on a mission--he started the blog because he felt that authors needed help figuring how to make money, and he's clearly been putting in a lot of effort into that thing for many years. Not every author has that kind of fire for something that is basically a sideline to their real work--and some who do are like Barry Eisler, who has a passion for politics and therefore has a blog that he is fairly certain alienates a good portion of his potential readership.

I'm also quite leery of the whole "you've got to reveal yourself" thing. I agree that that can be compelling, but honestly, do I want readers to like my writing or to like me? Being in my line of work, quite a number of my friends have been published, and of course I support them in that, but far more often I know nothing about a given writer when I read their work, and that's fine with me. I'll judge them on their writing, thank you very much.

The more crucial issue that I think often gets ignored in these debates is the one of stalkers: Writers of any renown get them, and I've had my share already just by virtue of being female, reasonably attractive, and generally civil. So, you know, I'm not going to open up here about things that aren't related to writing, or post where I live (along with pictures of my house, like I've seen some young female bloggers do--what are they thinking?), or anything like that.

All of which is basically of a long way of saying, I'm still on hiatus. Spring is a busy time....