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Tweet Rebellion: From Peeve to Principle

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My enthusiasm has turned to disgust. Twitter, again. I thought all this Tweeting nonsense would be over by now, as unfulfilling as it seems.

I often like the WordPress Weekly Writing Challenges. I usually find some other interesting bloggers through it, and often gain a few more “followers” each time I blog on a Challenge.

That’s why I’m so annoyed that the Challenge this week has to do with embedding Twitter in my post. Aren’t there real things to write about? Things that are longer than 120 characters? (Or 140, or whatever it is.)

I’ve always been annoyed by Twitter – I mean, even just the name is obnoxious.

I’m particularly annoyed when my more thoughtful and reflective friends get sucked into Tweet World. Really?

But then I realize that when something bugs me this much, when I make a simple peeve into a matter of principle, there’s usually something deeper going on.

I think I’m afraid.

Afraid that I won’t be able to keep up with this ever-expanding technology race, this social media morass. I hate it when all my friends are staring into their various I-this’s and I-that’s and showing each other their spiffy apps. I feel left out and not up to the task.

And so I feign disdain.

It’s true, life is too short already, and I think a lot of this stuff is a waste of time. I don’t want to bother to learn about it, because it’s not how I want to spend my days here on earth. That’s why I don’t have a TV; if I did, I would watch it, and I don’t want to.

And it’s also true that I’m not working; I’m spending my retirement savings on tuition at the moment, and it seems there are probably more useful things to invest in than all these beeping and ringing and vibrating boxes.

But I used to sneer at Facebook, and now I admit I’m a fan. It really does help me stay connected and up to date with my friends. I also used to mock bloggers (sorry) as self-absorbed ranters without a life. And now I’m an addict. Blogging is the most fun thing EVER.

So who knows? Maybe I’ll Tweet one day. I kind of hope not. Anyway, it won’t be today.

Today I am rebelling. I am going to call this a Daily Post Challenge and I’m not going to embed a Tweet. Or a Twitter. Or whatever. So there.

Weekly Writing Challenge: Tweetizens | The Daily Post.

How to Blow Up a Relationship

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They say a writer’s life can be a solitary one, and it’s no wonder. Any honest writer is going to tick off or hurt friends and family eventually. I mean, our lives are peopled with priceless characters — are we not supposed to share them with the world? A writer-friend of mine has a sweatshirt emblazoned with the warning:

Be nice; you might end up in my novel.

Authors tell me that their friends always think they recognize themselves in books, regardless of whether the character or story is actually based on them. This would be especially true if, like me, you write nonfiction using real names. Hard to miss that.

The first time this issue came up for me was in one of my earliest blog posts. I wrote about my friend John, saying that his wife didn’t care much for me. I got a call from John a few days later, saying he was enjoying my blog. Crap. It hadn’t even occurred to me that he would read it.

“How did you come across my blog?” I asked.

“You sent an email about it,” he said.

“Oh, right.” What could I say?

I thought that “sorry” was a good place to start. I tried to explain that I sort of thought these things went out into the ether and only strangers read them. I hadn’t thought about our mutual friends reading them, or that my blog might affect him. John was gracious and fine with it, saying it was hardly a secret. (He and I have a long history.)

I’m more thoughtful about what I write now. For instance, I just got back from visiting my sister, who is a fascinating woman with unusual beliefs. I’d love to write about our conversations and her newest theories and interests, but she’s very private, keeps to herself, and wouldn’t appreciate it. So that’s out.

I have a friend who has essentially been brainwashed by a religious cult, but I can’t write about that, even though it’s highly unlikely she would read it because they don’t allow their converts to mess around on the web for fear that they’ll find stories from those who have escaped. But I don’t want to jeopardize our relationship or any leverage I might have to help her get back inside her real self, so that story’s out, too.

Stories about old beaus could certainly provide a lot of material, but most are now married and I wouldn’t want to upset any matrimonial apple carts. I can’t say that I care about protecting the privacy of the guys at the CIA who stuck their married hands down my blouse or up my skirt. They’re probably all divorced by now anyway. That’s why I allowed Rubber Ducky to tell all (except names).   https://melanielynngriffin.wordpress.com/2012/09/24/rubber-ducky-exposes-cia-sexual-harassment/

Since my plan is to write a memoirish nonfiction book, I don’t know how I’ll navigate all this. I’d love to hear your thoughts. How do you deal with it? Do you have criteria or a guiding philosophy, or is it a case-by-case thing? Have you ever damaged a relationship with your writing? Have you been burned by a writer? Did your relationship survive? Should I just assume I’m going to blow up all my relationships eventually, and just get it over with?

Rear View Of Group Of Friends...

We were friends, and the warmest of friends, he and I,

Each glance was a language that broke from the heart,

No cloudlet swept over the realm of the sky,

And beneath it we swore that we never would part.”

Lennox Amott

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