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Really short stories – Twitter stories

July 18th, 2009

As Twitter has become more popular, many have been taking up the challenge of squeezing things down into 140 characters. What about stories?

Although a few Twitter story tellers have come and gone there are still some around. @arjunbasu is one such tweep and one all should follow.

If ever there were proof that a very small story can be a successful one then he is it.  He will often twitter more than one story in a day.

Despite the limit each one feels complete. Often, they describe a domestic situation unfolding, and the conclusion forms a witty punch line.

It’s an excellent demonstration of clarity through precision. 140 characters forces merciless cutting. Only the kernel of the story remains.

And that’s all the tips I can give (being inexperienced myself) – pick a situation, then cut cut cut. Finally, juggle words and punctuation.

I think the beginning middle and end bits take care of themselves – they naturally appear from the way we build sentences. Here’s an example

This was what he’d been waiting for, a chance to be heard! He opened his mouth to speak, but practice had rendered him completely voiceless.

And this isn’t the only creative writing going on on Twitter (it could be argued that all Tweets fall into that category, but I won’t here).

Some impersonate dead celebrities like @cdarwin who uses the writing of Charles Darwin to Tweet his Beagle trip as if it were happening now.

Poems are a favourite too. @thebookwright announced on @thecreativepenn’s podcast that he will be tweeting his poem 100 Years Of Ermintrude.

Haikus are a great medium if you LOVE strict rules. The combination of 140 characters plus the required syllable count are a real challenge.

I’m sure my readers and followers have come across some excellent writing on Twitter, so please share Tweeps you follow in the comments bit.

Leave your comments, stories or other Twitter writing, plus your Twitter handle at http://getmewriting.com/short-stories/twitter-stories

Matt Short stories , , , , , ,

  1. Joanna Penn
    July 26th, 2009 at 04:07 | #1

    Hi Matt – thanks for mentioning me on here as well as your tweets. Twitter is indeed an amazing medium for all kinds of things. I think authors can add new fans by tweeting their stories, or reaching out to people who might be interested in their work.
    Twitter provides the 2nd most traffic to my blog, and I love the connections I make there (of which you are one, of course!)
    Thanks so much, Joanna

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