Showing posts with label tweet. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tweet. Show all posts

Thursday, 10 July 2014

To Tweet Or Not - Damian Harvey

As if it isn't enough trying to get as much writing done as I feel I should (and I rarely feel I've done enough by the end of the day) I also feel the need to review books, blog, do my own website (this week I've been creating some simple animated pictures to make it look more interesting - like this one of L.S. Lowry) and of course, I Twitter. I know lots of other writers do all these things too and I'm sure that they have no problems in doing so, and doing it well. 

The problem is that all of these things take time out of the writing day, and again I rarely feel as though I'm even doing these extra things as well as I should... It's a guilt thing.

Of all of these additional little things, surely Twitter is the easiest and least time consuming - after all, it only takes a moment to send a little Tweet doesn't it. Or so you'd think.

Love it or loathe it, online social networking of one kind or another is here to stay and I feel it's important to keep my hand in as a way of promoting myself and what I'm doing. I've restricted myself to only using Twitter as I find it does just about everything that I want. I have a Twitter feed on the home page of my website which allows me to say a quick hello to schools I'm visiting. This always goes down well when it's projected onto a screen in the school hall or in the classroom for everyone to see (making it that bit more personal) though sadly some schools automatically block social networking sites so all that appears is an empty space on the home page - so I've wondered if it's worthwhile after all.

I also tweet about what I'm doing - though as we all know, Tweeting that you're sitting at home writing everyday can become a little boring - as can the earth shattering news that you're making another cup of coffee. To make it a little more interesting I do try and tweet about other things - what I'm doing and where I'm going etc... including pictures from time to time where relevant and when there's a signal on my phone. I know I could make better use of Twitter though - again if only I had the time. Just as I start to think it's not worth the effort, something happens to change my mind. Recently I've been invited into schools as a result of interest generated by Tweets from and to other schools, I've also had contact from publishers. So I've decided, yes... it is worth the effort (for now) and of  course it only takes a moment to do.

As a result of this, I've recently decided that I should be a little more proactive on Twitter. I've made an effort to follow relevant people - seeking out schools, teachers, libraries, librarians, publishers, authors illustrators, bookshops and other book related people and organisations. If any of these follow me then I follow back - after all, what's the point of it all if you are only tweeting to a handful of people. Although I'm keen to build my followers I have no intention of playing the game of following hundreds of random people, then unfollowing as soon as they follow back (as I've noticed some do). I want to try and keep it relevant. I've also taken the time to unfollow those people that, after a period of time, don't follow me (again, what's the point unless you are genuinely interested in them or they are relevant to what you are doing). is a great help in this.

I've been slowly going through the list of people I follow and creating little lists to make it easier for me to find them - this task is still ongoing. I know need to actively retweet relevant tweets from people, favouriting  here and there and commenting etc. The problem is, it all takes time doesn't it... and what started out as a quick and simple tweet easily becomes time consuming. It's easy to start obsessing over numbers and why so and so has suddenly stopped following you.

Today has been a good day - I've written quite a lot, I've done a new web page showing new book covers (History Heroes), I've written this (waffling) post, I've Tweeted a bit and I don't feel guilty...
Tomorrow I'll be visiting a school (so no writing) and I'll tweet about it too if there's a phone signal.

Damian Harvey
Twitter @damianjharvey

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Twister Not Just A Kids Game - Lynne Garner

For the last few years I've been teaching creative writing to adults. In one of the sessions we discuss point of view and as part of that session I set a task. This task is to take a fairytale or nursery rhyme and attempt to tell it using the flash fiction form known as a  Twister. If you've never heard of the term basically it's a story or part of a story told in 140 characters or less. It originated on the social media site Twitter.
You may be able to guess what's coming next. Yep, I'm throwing down the gauntlet and hoping some of you want to give writing a twister or two a go. Don't forget to use first point of view. What follows is my attempt at The Three Billy Goats Gruff from the point of view of the troll:

Woken this morning by small goat trying to cross bridge without paying toll. What is the world coming to?

Discovered second goat trying to sneak across bridge without paying toll. Just cannot believe how rude goats can be.

This morning a third goat attempted to cross bridge without paying toll. How do they expect me to stay in business?

For sale: one bridge in good state of repair, high daily foot fall and permission to charge toll. #businessforsale  

My students have written some fab versions of well known stories. So it's with fingers crossed some of the ABBA readers/followers give it a go and are willing to share. 

Lynne Garner

A little blatant self promotion:
I have three short distance learning courses commencing on the 6th July via Women On Writing: