Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Twooshes On My Mind
My current novel-in-progress is on its third draft. When I was writing the first draft of it, back in 2003, I got very neurotic about how it looked on the page. Paragraphs had to be mathematically precise. If I deleted a word, I had to add a word. Hours were spent deliberating over the choice of a preposition. In the whole draft, there was not one line of dialogue, because it looked weird to me, physically. I couldn't let it into my manuscript. Eventually I scrapped that attempt and forced myself to write it as a screenplay, to get over my twitching. It worked -- I mostly scrapped the screenplay too, but I can now write the book with dialogue and it doesn't bother me too much.
Other authors have said that they like the 140 character limit on Twitter because it forces them to think about word choice and be thrifty about language. I like that too. I also like hitting that 140 character limit exactly -- it's like ringing a bell. It satisfies my need to be picky-picky with words without ruining my manuscript. I like twooshing for this reason. I've done it 330 times.
This is my Twitter cloud for the last five years, in alphabetical order (generated by Tweet Stats -- they can also tell you how many times you've twooshed). My Twitter handle is @lostcheerio. Should we really be following each other?