Monday, January 9, 2012

Not Quite Twitterpated

So I did it. I finally took the plunge and signed up for a Twitter account.

For the past month now, I have been peeking in, scrolling through the tweets and trying to figure out what in the world half of them are saying. Perhaps I should have read "Twitter for Dummies" (that's got to exist, right?) before launching in.

I think I got the @ symbols, but the pound signs? Or are they called hashtags (hash tags; hash-tags; hatch tags; has tags; has-been tags; has-anyone-got-a-clue tags)? Twitter groups perhaps?

Not to mention coming into a thread halfway through a conversation. There's got to be a way to read what someone responded/replied to, right?

And lists . . . groups with shared interest? But then what about the hash tages? Plus I'm not sure I get the purpose just yet. Though I'm sure there is one. There's gotta be.

Alas. So much information. So much I don't know.

This is, of course, where you come in. Shoot me your best piece of Twitter advice. Please? Pretty please with a strawberry (much better than a cherry) and fresh-whipped cream on top? And fine, if you insist I'll throw in the chocolate syrup.

Because I need it (I mean your advice, not the chocolate syrup). I need you! Explain this Twitter-verse to me.

And oh yeah. I'm @MsVerbose if you wondered.

25 comments:

Emily said...

I wish I had some good advice for you. I have a Twitter account, but I don't really understand it and I almost never tweet anything. Mostly, I just scroll through and see what other people have to say.

Good luck though! I hear it's addictive!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I have an impossible time with the # conversations that are scheduled. I don't bother with them anymore. Someone recommended Tweetdeck, but I can't figure that one out, either.

I did borrow Twitter for Dummies from the library, but I can't remember if I read it. Maybe I just read a few chapters. :P

Lynn said...

I browsed through Twitter for Dummies in the book store, borrowed a library book on Twitter, started up but really don't use it much! I do like that I can tweet blog posts. And once in a while I'll scroll through conversations. I do find FB easier for conversations. With Tweet Deck, you can sort your contacts in column, making it more organized. Look forward to reading how it goes for you!

Melissa Sarno said...

I've been on twitter for a while but never really got into it. I tweet maybe once every 3 months. HA. If you want to get into it and follow the hashtag conversations, I suggest downloading tweet deck. It's free. You can open up different columns (for ex. you can open up a #yalitchat column and follow that conversation only) Also, the literary agent Janet Reid wrote a great post about twitter that basically said it's just not that serious, twitter is, bottom line, about making friends. So just follow people, reply to them and join in. I liked that philosophy.

Slamdunk said...

I am just a Twitter newbie as well. Folks include me in Tweets and then can't understand why I don't respond--I just don't use it much.

Lori M. Lee said...

I use twitter WAY too much lol. #hashtags are a way to link up with other people talking about the same topic, which is why chats are often held on twitter via hashtags. Viewing JUST the hashtag tweets is almost like entering a chatroom.

Lists are purely for your own personal organization. For example, I have one list where I put all my writer friends, one list where I put all the industry people I follow, and another list for my non-writer friends. I organize my Tweetdeck to display only one list per column and I am SO much more organized =P

Have fun on twitter!

KarenG said...

My best advice about Twitter is to look at it as learning a new language. You just have to jump in and take it slow at first, learn the vocabulary and most of all, learn by doing but by reading a book LOL.

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Twitter scares me because of everything you mentioned :) Including the fact that me trying to talk in 140 characters or less is a complete impossibility. Please share your version of Twitter For Dummies when you figure this out. Maybe then I'll be brave enough to try it :)

Colene Murphy said...

Oh good luck with that. I'm no help. I forget about twitter. I don't think I've signed in for at least 2 months. And haven't missed it either. Oh well! (this was actually the first time I've thought about it in forever. ha!)

Stephen Tremp said...

Great! I just sent yo a Twitter friend request!

Old Kitty said...

Oh noes!! You;ve gone to the dark side! LOL!!

But seriously!! Enjoy your twittering - I haven't a clue what it is or why or who - but there are some great advice and support here! Take care
x

Lindsay said...

Welcome to Twitter. I just followed you. Yay to the future tweet chatting! <3

Lenny Lee* said...

hi miss janet! yikes! sounds pretty mixed up. for me im not allowed on twitter or facebook so i got not one word that could help you. i wish i did cause for sure i could like that strawberry and whip cream and chocolate syrup. yum! ha ha.
...hugs from lenny

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I'm following you. :) I did a lot of lurking before I actually started tweeting. I'm not quite sure how I did this, but my tweets go on my facebook page too...magic?

Chris Phillips said...

reply@jsumnerjohnson, wut u need to no about #twitter is win u get past the no gramer #'s and abrv words u realize how #dvolved weve become 2 fit thots n 140 char no1 readz neway lol

Margo Berendsen said...

I'm pretty lame with Twitter but I have noticed that when I reply to a blogger's tweets a few times, it feels more like a "personal" thing than just commenting on their blogs. Or maybe that's just a one-sided perception??

Another thing I really like is the #1k1hr hash tag. It's like a word-war: 1000 words in 1 hour challenge. You can type the tag into Twitter search to see if any other writers are looking for a match and then at the end of the hour you report your progress. I don't use this enough but its a great motivational tool.

Melissa Ann Goodwin said...

I like your twitter name, I'll follow you. Honestly, I'm still trying to figure out how to make it worthwhile. It's like a million people in Times Square on New Year's Eve, all yelling about their books. I think it's like blogging - it still comes down to making one on one contacts and developing relationships. Otherwise, it seems overwhelming.

Susanne Drazic said...

I'm not very good with Twitter. It is hard for me to keep up with what everyone is posting. Sometimes I post links to my blog posts or I'll tweet someone else's blog post that I find interesting or I'll retweet someone else's tweet if I find it interesting.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Janet .. I'm on Twitter but don't use it! Same with FB - but this might be the year of change - so interesting to read the comments here.

Good luck with it all - I'd float on that layer of chocolate and let the scents waft in .. cheers Hilary

Kenda Turner said...

I haven't started with Twitter yet, but sure appreciate this post for when I do. Your questions, and commenters' answers will help me navigate some of the process, I'm sure. Thanks!

Vicki Rocho said...

I've got a twitter account but I've yet to use it. I barely keep up with the blog why would I give myself MORE technology to ignore?

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

I love Twitter. I find it quick and easy and just fun. But it does take a little bit of practice. My advice is (a) don't be intimidated and (b) think about all the cool information you can share--blog posts you like, quotes, books you've read, articles you want to share. Also, I love TweetDeck as a way to Twitter-organize. Just have fun and see where it take you. I'm off to follow you!

Carolyn V said...

I'm on twitter, but I don't get it. I was actually thinking of getting off, but there are so many cool agents and publishers on it.

Leslie said...

It does exist, right in the black and yellow For Dummies section of your bookstore :) I wrote it with two friends (you can find us all at @leslie (me) @pistachio @gruen)

We tweet for the book @dummies

BUT, so many people are out there to help you enjoy Twitter now, you can probably figure it out by playing around a bit.

Tip: most people don't enjoy using Twitter.com for Twitter. They download an app or use something like Hootsuite.com instead. It's organized better - less jumble.

Have fun!

MikeS said...

I quit Twitter early on because of the I-don't-care factor.

They should have called it Yammer instead of Twitter.