Good morning,Tweeting authors/writers,

This article about tweeting authors made me smile. Do you tweet?

Calling it Twitter was not an accident. If you have ever spent any time watching birds, you’ll notice how playful, fast, unpredictable, naughty…and sometimes downright mean they can be. And…there’s the group tweet and the solo tweet (witness the behavior of birds on a telephone wire!)

Many authors have little use for the pretension of hermetic distance and never accepted a historically specific idea of what it means to be a writer. With the digital age come new conceptions of authorship. And for both authors and readers, these changes may be unexpectedly salutary. At their best, social media democratize literature and demystify the writing process. When they use social media, authors have as many personae to choose from as they do in their other writings.

I agree with Anne Trubek’s (author of A Skeptic’s Guide to Writer’s Houses) premise that social media has removed the distance between writers/authors and their audiences and that the often crazy writer/author hermetically sealed away somewhere saying “I want to be alone!” is becoming a relic.

Actually, I confess publicly and somewhat nervously that this describes me. I love to be alone when I write because it’s the only way I can draw a line in the sand between writing for my company and writing for myself. And (this is no small thing) my hearing is so acute that I can hear a guy snoring down the street (ask my husband). I can hear the low battery warming on a carbon monoxide alarm in the townhouse a block away (ask my husband). Living in a New York City apartment, I can hear all sorts of things that one doesn’t really want to hear.

But I digress. How can you not like a writer such as Mat Johnson, who says about his readers: β€œThe people I follow, they are my dream party guests, interesting strangers whose wit keeps me coming back.”

What has really changed is that the old Hollywood system of grooming actors and controlling their imagine down to their plucked eyebrows, which existed in the old publishing world as well – beautiful photographs, make-up artists, wardrobe consultants, publicists and agents carefully monitoring everything one said, did and ate – that world is gone. And what has emerged in it’s place is a more playful, authentic, spontaneous and eruptive environment where anything goes.

To tweet, or not to tweet if you are a writer. That is the question.

Have a good day, everyone.