I’ve tried. I’ve made an account and stared at my home page. I notice what I’m doing: nothing. I consider writing something, but nothing comes to mind. I look at the little group that I follow. Four tiny boxes, only two of whom actually Tweet. I have seven people following me, and whenever I see that number, I feel like I’m letting someone down.
I’ve watched the tutorial and I’ve read the instructions. A friend I respect a lot is a Twitter devotee. She’s tried to mentor me in, but I resist.
There have been lots of articles written about Twitter. The one that caught my attention was by a journalist who claims that Twitter made him a better writer. That having to write in a short little bursts – 140 characters per post is the limit – forced him to choose his words more carefully. That makes sense to me. I think we all can benefit from a bit of succinctitude. In fact, I’m limiting every sentence in this post to 140 characters (including spaces) as my own personal tribute to brevity.
Still, I can’t tweet.
I have a friend – an award-winning magazine writer – who credits his career success to his MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His pieces are character driven and soulful and unusually crafted. The Iowa program is an impressive credential. Will Twitter, years from now, carry that kind of prestige? Will any writer worth his salt be “classically Twitter-trained?”
I don’t want Tweets sent to my cell phone and Twitter says it can’t access any of my friends because my e-mail is AOL. Certainly those things take a lot of the fun out of it. But besides that, nothing about Twitter seems inviting. FaceBook feels to me like walking into a big, bright party. You never know who you’re going to run into, or what they’re going to say. Twitter feels like work, but I can’t really put my finger on why.
Maybe someday I’ll eat these characters. All 1,962 of them (including spaces). But for now, I just don’t tweet.