This is crossposted from my new Tumblr blog. I’m thinking of making it my new professional home base on the net. Yes, I know, I’m very digitally nomadic. I don’t want to stop posting here entirely, but as I mention in the post, I’ll probably just end up crossposting the longer stuff here. Maybe I’ll have a weekly collection of links to my notable Tumblr posts. Not sure yet. It’s still an experiment. Anyway, on with the post:
I’ve dabbled in many forms of social media. Facebook, Twitter, blogging on WordPress, even had a brief fling with Google+. While they all have their merits, I don’t really click with any of them in a substantial way.
Why? I think it’s because each of them serves a need, but none of them serve all my needs. Facebook is for my personal life. Twitter is for the random things that pop into my head, or the small things that don’t deserve anything deeper than 140 characters (or, if I’m feeling wordy, 280). I write in my blog to expand upon a subject, play around with words, try to be funny, and to tell the world “hey, I’m a writer, I exist, and this is what’s going on with me.” Whatever I post on Facebook or Twitter doesn’t end up on my blog. Links to blog posts automatically show up on my FB and Twitter feeds, but otherwise those two sites would never see my “professional” side.
In my search for a home on the internet, I’ve only found campsites.
That’s one reason I’ve begun this Tumblr. I’m still looking for just one place where I can tell people “follow me here” and not feel like they’re missing out of any part of me. I do think this site fits me a bit better than most. I can make longer posts if I have the urge, but it also feels like I can just post a picture or a video and not be wasting anyone’s time. I can take as much or as little time to share content as I want (or have time for in my busy schedule). Flexibility is the key word here. I like it.
I’ll still post on the other sites, I suppose. FB will always be for the personal stuff, Twitter for the brain nuggets. Anything long I post here will probably also end up on the WordPress account because I’m big on redundancy as a form of backup and, in this case, reaching a wider audience. But for the near future, I will call Tumblr home.
It loves me, I hate it.
I hate Twitter because it is like being in a large room where everyone is talking and I can’t focus on one conversation for long. Everyone has something to say, and sometimes people at the other end of the room want to hear, so word travels between people like a more efficient game of Telephone (well, that part is pretty cool). My aversion to crowds translates to the digital world.
But I also love Twitter. It lets me yell out my random comments at the people who interest me. It’s a good networking tool. I can find lots of interesting stuff on there.
Here’s an unexpected benefit that really shouldn’t have been unexpected at all: it trains me to say more with less words. That 140-character limit can be a bitch. Here I am, trying to express myself and be less taciturn, and Twitter says, “Hey now, you think letters grow on trees, son? Give some of those back right now before I get my sack of doorknobs.”
But it’s good in a way. I tend to be liberal with word counts. Paring down what I want to say is good practice for getting to the point in my fiction, especially with short stories when every word counts. It makes me get rid of weak words. Die, unnecessary adverbs and adjectives! And then I burn the corpses so they don’t come back.
Okay, I’m done talking about Twitter. Now go RT this so all your friends can see!
P.S. WordPress recommends tags for posts. For some reason, it’s recommending “hate speech.” What the heck is that, WordPress? Is it because I’m talking smack about Twitter? Are you friends? Do you have lunch at the cafe down the street every Thursday afternoon and talk about your cat pictures?