Debbie Ridpath Ohi reads, writes and illustrates for young people. Every few weeks, she shares new art, writing and reading resources; subscribe below. Browse the archives here.

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Writer comics by Debbie Ridpath Ohi are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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Twitter Guide For Authors & Illustrators > The Basics > Why can't I leave my userpic blank? I don't want people knowing what I look like.

Index of topics: Main Twitter Guide For Writers & Illustrators page. To go back to my blog for kidlit/YA writers and illustrators, see Inkygirl. You can find me on Twitter at @inkyelbows (focus: writing and illustrating children's books) and @DebbieOhi (livetweets, chat, photos, personal ramblings). Also see my list of Other Useful Twitter Guides For Authors And Illustrators and Twitter Lists of: agents who represent kidlit/YAkidlit/YA editors, children's book art/creative directors and K-12/teen librarians on Twitter.

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If you're uncomfortable with having people know what you look like, choose some other image. I've seen people use cartoon representations, for example, or favourite pets or book covers.

I strongly recommend AGAINST leaving your userpic blank, however (the default Twitter icon), because people may assume you're a spammer. I also find that an account with no user icon gives an impression of "I'm just here for a short while but may not stay if I don't like it."

Even if you ARE just trying out Twitter on a trial basis, I still recommend posting a userpic, else some people may not want to bother following you.

I also recommend have a realistic userpic that looks like you, rather than a representation. Why? Because people are more likely to see you as trustworthy, not having anything to hide. Also, keep in mind that when you're a Fabulously Famous Big-Name Author, your likeness is going to be plastered everywhere anyway.

Last updated on July 13, 2010 by Debbie Ridpath Ohi