Friday, July 10, 2009

How to Make a Twit of Yourself in One Cool Move

I knew there was a good reason my gut was screaming for me to run far far away from the Twitter revolution. At first I just assumed it was my resistance to trying something new + an addictive personality = even less time spent writing...but no, it was my interior alert system trying desperately to warn me that disaster awaited on the tweeting front.

Like an idiot, I put my fears and reservations on hold after a really long time of stubborn refusal to entertain ideas concerning that little blue bird (NOT the one symbolizing happiness) of the social networking scene. Then last week I said to myself, "Self, what ya got to lose? Just give it a try!"

Oh woe to idiots who do not listen to their own advice and intuitions. Here, I'll show you rather than tell you about my premier Twitter experience:

[Friend Kimmi Richardson, author of The Unbreakable Child somehow got a tweet through to me, and I decided to follow her. Being totally unfamiliar with the Twitter set-up, I went into my profile or whatever and took a deep breath before sending her a message...]

"Am I actually tweeting, or do I just have gas?"

I quickly reverted to email and my comfort zone to continue the conversation with Kim.

"Angie you are finally tweeting. LOL! When you put the @ at the beginning of the sentence you respond to that person. Example, if you want to respond to me you do this: @writernwaiting Am I tweeting or do I just have gas?" Kimmi patiently explained.

"OMG," I wrote, "Do you mean I told everybody about my gas and not just you? Just one more reason I don't need to be on Twitter! (Not that I actually know who saw it -- your followers, mine, the people I'm somehow following, everybody on the planet?) Sooo confusing."

Then I got an email from Kat of Tender Graces fame that said, "I can't find you on twitter. Where are you?"

"Heck if I know," I wrote back. "And I thought I was talking to Kimmi but Tooted on everyone instead of Tweeting!"

And there were many emails after that punctuated with LOL's and LMAO's.

Okay, this would only happen to me...but I guess it coulda been worse. Who knows, maybe Tooting will surpass Tweeting in popularity one day. :)
*Image from


Anonymous said...

I would rather toot than tweet. Am not allowed to tweet in public.
See ya,

Karen said...

I can't even do Facebook! Once someone asks to be my "friend" and I say yes......where do they go and what do I do? Rhetorical question....cause I don't even have time for it!

jinksy said...

Tooting? Tweeting? Why not just stick with blowing your own trumpet? So much easier. :)

Terri Tiffany said...

LOL So you broke down and did it,huh? I did a few weeks ago and honestly--not loving it. Love Facebook better. But it is a good place to find links to relevant topics--that's about it for me.

Eileen Astels Watson said...

That's too funny. I just learned the @ thing too. But I still think everyone sees those too. It's a challenge to learn, but fun.

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

I have an account, but Im still not getting it. The point, that is. The highlight for me has been seeing that a young, prominent pastor had breakfast with his father. I only update mine about every 48 hours, and I don't automatically see what everyone is doing; I have to go looking for them, so I just don't get it. It's another vampire on the neck of Time.

Jessica said...

Hahaa! You're fine. The whole purpose of Twittering is to entertain and share info. You did both! Snort!!!

lizspin said...

Tooting instead of tweeting??? Too funny!

Scobberlotcher said...

This was just so funny to read! Who of us can't relate. :)

Embee said...

I'm lovin' twitter. I've found it to be an awesome place to connect with other writers, to follow agents and publishers and get links to other writing related stuff. I'm still woefully ignorant of all the Twitter ways, but I'm learning. And it's so fun to eavesdrop on everyone else's conversations. I guess I'm just a voyeur at heart!!!

SharonK said...

I feel your pain!!! I would rather NOT tweet but it seems it's part of the "thing to do" if you want to be noticed. It's just one more popularity contest I am destined to lose!

I do love FaceBook though, much more interactive and easier to understand!

ChristaCarol said...

LOL sorry to be laughing at your expense, Angie, but this is just hilarious. So have you thrown in the twitter towel, then? Or do you plan on keeping it regardless of your tooting?

Jeanette Levellie said...

Angie: I laughed so loud when i read this post! I know you did this on purpose so the rest of us won't feel so bad about our mistakes. Thank you for making my day!


Jenna said...

Haha! That's just perfect, isn't it? ;)

A while back, I used Twitter to tell my mom to come pick me up because I didn't have my phone and I was stranded in the library. That's when you know you spend way too much time on-line, am I right?

Sorry Twitter didn't work for you. But thanks for sharing: it made me smile. :)

Hilary said...

Angie - thank you for the laugh out loud post. I gave into Facebook, but dislike it for the most part. I peek in occasionally and comment rarely. I much prefer the blogging scene where I have total control.. particularly of my tweets. ;)

Angie Ledbetter said...

Oren: Thanks for backing me up! A true friend. :)

Karen: Ditto...and my 17, 18 & 19-y.o.'s informed me that it's "creepy" for "old people" like me to be on FB...but that's probably because they don't want me seeing their pages and interacting with their friends. LOL

Jinksy: I'm doing good to just walk around straight these days.

Terri: I guess besides not knowing how the whole Twitter thing works...I just don't see the point yet. Who CARES what I had for breakfast???? :)

Angie Ledbetter said...

Eileen: Don't think I'm up for the challenge. Arghhh!

2nd Cup: I'm in total agreement with ya. Just not "getting" the whole thing.

Jessica: Yeah.....about that..... :)

liz: You're most welcome to join me on the cusp of the Tooter explosion. (Bad choice of words, hunh?) LOL

Scobber/Karen: That's what I keep trying to tell myself. It could happen to anyone, right? Right? :)

Angie Ledbetter said...

Embee: Maybe it's an age thing. Do you really enjoy all the tweets about people's daily doings? eww

LOL, SharonK. If that's the purpose of Twitter, I'm definitely out. Join me on Tooter?

Christa: Think I'll hang on to that towel. I'll need it to clean up future messes. LOL

Ummm, Jen......yeah.......that's exactly how it happened! LOL (Please don't tell your husband what I did, or if you do, tell him he was right! hehe)

Jenna: Couldn't you text your Mom? Or use AIM? Did you toot/tweet to her phone or computer? WAHHHHHHHHHH....see how stoopid I is?

Hilary, hear ya! No Beano needed for those social network branches! :)

Janna Qualman said...

Ohhhhhhhhh, *wipes tears* my morning needed this laugh. Poor Angie!

Angie Ledbetter said...

LOL, Janna, soooooo glad to have added to your morning sunshine! :) ( weren't too surprised, were ya?)

Lady Glamis said...

And this is why I don't Tweet. Thanks for sharing! :)

Carrie Wilson Link said...

I'm anti Twitter, and this confirms it!

B.J. Anderson said...

LOL!! Yeah, I'm giving Twitter a wide swath. Not for me!

Nannette Croce said...

Angie, I am constantly loosing myself on the networking sites. I'm on Facebook, didn't even know until some friends asked to be my friend––thought we already were friends. They're all too busy, too complicated, and my daughter thinks it's weird for parents to be on Facebook anyway.

B.J. Anderson said...

LMAO! Yeah, no twitter for me. :D

Melissa Marsh said...

Hahahaha - love it! I, too, have that inner voice telling me not to Tweet and I'm definitely going to listen to it now!

Midlife Jobhunter said...

Tooting can make you very happy. As to Tweeting? I hear your story - I'll pass. Just one more distraction from writing.

Lazy Writer said...

I set up a Twitter account this week, too. Unfortunately, I haven't done anything with it. It scares me!

Angie Ledbetter said...

Lady G: My pleasure!

Carrie: I'm so glad to help. :)

BJ: I'm wondering if it's an age thang?

Nannette: My kids tell me the same thing.

I'm sure you're a much wiser woman, Melissa. :)

Midlife -- ummm, yeah, it sure can make you happy. LOL

Angie Ledbetter said...

Lazy Writer: Learn from my snafu & be very afraid. LOL.


Marguerite said...

Hilarious post, Angie! Twitter is just too much information, for me. A running dialogue of a minute to minute summary of one's life. Scary, indeed! You said it all, Twitter for Dummies!!lol

Dominique said...

Thanks for the chuckle!

I actually like Twitter because I find it extremely useful to get information from a lot of the travel professionals there...and we have a pretty active "social media" community here in the Detroit area.
Facebook, on the other hand...I've heard horror stories about people getting on Facebook and having folks from their elementary school or high school find them. That's the last thing I want...I won't even go to my reunion this year :P

As always, different strokes...

Angie Ledbetter said...

Marguerite...I think I'm just too old. LOL.

Dominique: Thanks for stopping in! I'm so afraid of the twitter/fb time suck. You must be a pro at it. Glad you've found the route that's best for your profession. :)

Jody Hedlund said...

Oh Angie, I'm rolling with laughter!! You are just too funny, girl! Please don't stop tooting/tweeting or whatever comes out! I'm sure you'll keep us very entertained and that's what's so fun about it!!

JyLnC said...

I finally joined Twitter a few weeks ago since the website I volunteer on, Cover Cafe, set up a Twitter account. I enjoy reading other Tweets but have nothing to say on my own.

Maybe you can start your own social networking site and call it Tooter! :>)

Amie said...

Oh Angie . . . that's good stuff!

Jill Kemerer said...

Ha! Ha! Twitter makes my head spin. I miss the posts from my friends, but manage to get 17 in a row from someone I've never met. I realize we're supposed to be networking, but it feels strange sending random "toots" about my life to strangers!

Angie Ledbetter said...

Jody: I kinda get that woogly feeling when I think about toot/tweeting again. :)

JyLnC: That's my goal, girl! On Tooter you will only be allowed to post funny stuff......not "I'm going to the bathroom now..." or "It's hot today. Whew!" twittery things. LOL I'm trying the tweet thing for the same reasons as you. The Rose & Thorn uses it, and so does our local Readers & Writers group...but, durn, I'm sure not "getting" it. *Tooooot!*

Amie: Thanks. (I think.) :)

Robyn Campbell said...

I laughed as I read your post. So funny. I'm on twitter and I'm constantly asking Beth for help. I can't even figure out facebook. I wish I'd have seen that toot. Angie believe me, you're not alone. :)

Debbie said...

When I read the title of this post, I thought I had written in and posted it here by mistake. Then, I read the meat of it and yes, I think I did write this! Lots of people told me they laughed themselves silly at me when I tried to tweet. So, I stopped trying!

Sandra Leigh said...

Heh, heh. I found your toot,er, tweet.

BJW said...

Enjoying your toots, err, tweets, err posts, or, I mean, you're funny.

Avoid Twitter like tofu myself.

Great to find you.


GutsyWriter said...

I am shocked by how much we're all alike in that we're having trouble figuring out how to work it. I like FB as I only keep it to people I know, but twitter is different. I'm trying to see how to get the right "audience" to follow me and it's hard. great post.

Angie Ledbetter said...

EL.OH.EL, Jill. Exactly.

Robin, that I am not alone in my dunce-hood does make me feel marginally better. :)

Debbie: C'mon, try it again. (Misery loves company, my friend!)

Oh boy, Sandra. LOL

Ben, thanks for coming by. I'm following you now...Mr. Tom Thumb. hehe

Gutsy: Do you think it's some essential ability us writerly dweebs are missing? That's what I'm telling myself. LOL

Tim King said...

That was a wonderful story, Angie. I don't think you're the only one who makes such goofs. (Some people even goof big enough on Twitter to lose their jobs over it. Oops. Guess he shouldn't-a said that in public, huh?) But your story gave me a good chuckle. Really enjoyed it.


Rebecca Woodhead said...

poor you! I thought you did that on purpose. Personally I thought:

'Brave first outing on twitter. Like it!'

Have to say I love twitter. I'm in the top 7 of Ms Twitter UK now - overtaking all the big celebrities has been a hoot - and I don't use twitter to post 'am doing this' updates. Maybe one or two a week fall into that category.

I use twitter to connect with people I wouldn't otherwise have access to. For example: Tony Robbins, Stephen Fry, and Sharon Corr - of The Corrs follow me. This means I can direct message (dm) them. That's the thing you were trying to do when you broadcast. Basically, if someone follows you and you follow them back it means you can text-message them. Like having their cellphone number. So, every now and then I get a funny little message from Stephen Fry. It's great.

The other people I can connect with directly, of course, are publishers. Lots of my twitter friends are publishers or agents and there are also tv producers, directors, journalists etc who follow me.

Most of the time, I discuss literature. Bookworms congregate and thrash out points of language. The other day, I hosted a discussion on grammar and we were joined by a top academic publisher who sorted out our confusion. Published authors joined in - on the question end - fessing up to their own inadequacies.

I do 'literary stand-up' - people time me to write haiku/iambic pentameter/six word stories or to translate medieval texts. In return, they vote for me.

Hope you come back on. Maybe just lurk for a while until you've sorted it all out. Think you'd love some of the writer/reader groups like #litchat and #fridayreads.



p.s. if anyone wants to help vote me past Hermione from Harry Potter (you don't have to go near twitter to do it) go to - and click the + sign on my pic. Thanks

Lori said...

Oh, you are sooo funny! I am exactly in the same boat. No idea what to do with Twitter. Someday I'll grow up and learn all about it.

Robin @ Be Still and Know said...

Pardon me I "Tweeted" or "Twittered." Who has the time? I struggle to put together a post or two a week and check my facebook, so twitter... not for me. I embarrass myself enough on my blog, I don't need the extra help to make a fool of myself!

Blessing from a twitter free zone

Angie Ledbetter said...

TimK, thanks. I feel marginally better today. :)

Dear Rebecca/Twitter Pusher:

You make it sound soooo good, but I'm still afraid, given my first experience with the Twitter crack.

Hugs, Gumbo Writer

Lori: thanks for the back up. :)

LOL, Robin. The TFZ, hunh? I like it.

Michelle H. said...

Um, didn't anyone tell you that if you put your mouse pointer down at the end of the box opposite your tweeted message, two symbols appear. One is for you to respond to a person, and the other can trash the posted comment? And if you just want to send a private message, click on Direct Message in the sidebar.

Anonymous said...

dear mommie: OoOoOoOoOoOops! your B! This made me laugh but apple/apple tree and all that. Even though I stand by my opinion that you on facebook would be kinda creepy, I can show you how to set one up. It's a lot easier and more fun! Plus you could see all my thousands of cute pictures ;) Love you! <3 Queenie

Karen said...

This was really a gas! hahaha. And in our house, tooting has been popular with FabGrandpa for at least 17 years. Before that, I didn't know him so I can't say.

livesincave said...

well, dats whatcha git for tryin to be a young
techno. nex thang ya know, you'll be gittin one of them ipod-berry phones that can do everthang, 'cept perform a gynocological exam. (on second thought: they prolly already workin on dat: the ipod-berry-razor-cooter-rooter). stay off them my-face-tweeters and git to gittin on your next novel, old lady. aint no gold in them thar face-places.
write on!

t i m said...

i procastinate way too much already so I've resisted the lure of twitter so far...

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