Monday, February 27, 2012

Twitter: Distracting or Inspirational?

A couple years ago I wrote a post about Twitter; I wrote that the only reason I considered setting up my own Twitter page was to promote my own blog, which didn't seem like enough of a reason to start Tweeting.

So I still don't have a Twitter page, and I don't have a Facebook page either. It just seems to me like joining either Twitter or Facebook (or both) would take up a lot of time. Not only would I have to keep coming up with Tweets, I'd also have to read and respond to other people's Tweets. Seeing as how I am obsessive by nature (not that that's immediately OBVIOUS to people or anything), I figure I would just become addicted to these sites and spend way too much time on them.

But ever since I finally got a smartphone (for free, thanks to a new contract that I signed with my phone company), I have been a little tempted to start Tweeting. It seems like everyone's doing it, but on the other hand a lot of people are planking and I don't see myself doing that anytime soon. (Seriously, what is the point of lying face-down on the ground like that? Or is it the fact that there is no point to it at all that makes it entertaining to some people? Or is it more about the fact that it's completely stupid that makes it entertaining?)

One reason I think Tweeting might be fun is that it could be good writing practice to come up with interesting Tweets on a regular basis. Ever since I started blogging (which admittedly is time-consuming too, but it's worth it because of all the connections I've made with other bloggers), I've found myself to be more dedicated to my fiction writing. I think that developing a habit of updating my blog on a regular basis has made me more inclined to write fiction on a regular basis as well. Blogging has also been inspirational because of what I've read in other people's blogs; their descriptions of their writing experiences have motivated me to keep writing. And I've taken some of the lines that I've written on my own blog that I particularly liked and put them in the manuscript that I'm working on right now. So maybe Twitter could be inspirational too.

So I came up with a few more Tweets that I would put on my own Twitter page, if I had one:

I think that there should be a law that says that everyone has to brush their teeth every morning.

Did you get that, all you people who were breathing on me on the train?

If I start wearing short dresses and hair extensions and start getting drunk and picking fights in nightclubs, will someone give me my own reality show?

I'd call my reality show Lakeshore. Except instead of looking too tan everyone would look really pale from all the days and weeks without sunlight.

Maybe I should call the show Midwestern Vampires.

I've noticed that I haven't been having as many nightmares since I took a break from online dating. Coincidence?

I wish I could actually cook a meal without setting fire to the food/dish towels/my clothes.

I'm going to be thirty-one in a few weeks. How old do I have to be before lying about my age becomes acceptable?

I thought about naming my main character's love interest Justin, but Bieber kind of ruined the name for me.

Kim, Khloe, and Kourtney could be good names for the antagonists in my stories.

How do you deal with people who plagiarize your writing? I guess it's not okay to tar and feather people anymore, right?

Facebook is not an option for me because I'd never want to post any pictures of myself.

I hate the camera. Or maybe I should say that the camera hates ME.

On the other hand, one of these days, I'm going to be famous. I just hope that the paparazzi never photographs me when I'm wearing my night guard.

I wish I was a police officer.

Then when I show up in uniform and ask my neighbors to keep it down, they'll be a lot more likely to listen to me.

The problem with living in an apartment building is that you can't TP the yards of your annoying neighbors, because nobody has their own yard.

What if I just toilet-papered the doors to their apartments? Would that work?

What do you think of Twitter? Do you think it's too much of a distraction for writers, or can it be a good way to practice writing? Or is it both?


  1. I like twitter and joined reluctantly after resisting it for years. I also had a facebook page that I deleted two summers ago after all that privacy stuff went down. I follow literary journals, writers, and agents/editors on twitter, along with a few friends and colleagues. I've connected with a few people I wouldn't have met otherwise, but I admit that I spend way too much time tweeting and following links.

    It's less of a commitment than blogging,with which I am falling out of love. I want to be paid for my writing (I think this is my inner diva coming out) and blogging hasn't been as big of a bang for my buck as I hoped it would be. I'm still going to be in both communities, but for me, tweeting is more satisfying. At least until the next big thing comes around.

  2. I just started Twitter and I'm still figuring out all the lingo. The hash codes are confusing. But I do like the quick communication and the relationships between writers.
    I still hesitate to Tweet because I don't know what to say. I'm getting the hang of it!
    So, will you join Twitter? Come find me if you do.

    1. Hi Emily,
      I probably won't join Twitter right now, but maybe eventually. I just figure that since it probably will take up a bunch of time, it might not be a good idea for me to join now since I need to focus on finishing my prospectus.
      I don't get the hash codes either, but I do like Conan O'Brien's Tweets. He usually only sends out one Tweet a day but they're always funny.

  3. You clearly should start tweeting! I love it - it's great because I work from home, and it's a good way to interact with other writers. Plus, it's fun.

    1. Hi Talli,
      Tweeting does sound like fun; I think it is an exercise in creativity. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if someday creative writing teachers tell their students to come up with interesting Tweets as a writing prompt. (And anyway, the students would probably already have their cell phones out in class, so...)

  4. You should tweet! You are hilarious. Only funny people should tweet, everyone else should just stop :)

    1. Hi Angela,
      Thanks! And I agree that funny tweets are important. I was looking at the Twitter page of this male celebrity that I like; his page was full of his responses to fans' Tweets. I thought it was nice that he responded to them, but at the same time it was kind of boring to read a bunch of "Thanks for watching the show!" and "Happy Birthday" Tweets. Nothing funny about any of those Tweets.

  5. I agree with everyone else. You're too funny not to tweet!

    1. Hi Fran,
      Aw, thanks! I probably will join Twitter at some point, but only after I finish my prospectus (which will hopefully be within the next couple of months).

  6. I tweet and it's not all that time consuming. I do think its a good way to practice honing those bon mots.

    1. Hi Johanna,
      I think you're right that Twitter doesn't have to be time-consuming, especially since it wouldn't take as much time to write a couple tweets a day than it would an entire blog post. My only thing is that if I start following a bunch of other people's Twitter pages, I might get wrapped up in sending messages to them and reading their Tweets.