A literary Project on Twitter – #hashtagstory


Here it is – a Twitter literary project called #hashtagstory.

A couple of days ago I decided to stop #twitnovel. The last one I wrote is here. I realized, that as a non-English writer I would be just a 7th-or-sth-level imitator of the best Twitter writers. So I started to look for a good alternative.

And, believe me or not, this was easy. Three hints got me to the point. [1] was Boing Boing’s post on “Remix the Remixer” competition, where the task is to mash up any of Lawrence Lessig’s existing work and create something new, unique and creative. [2] was my two-weeks old (=outdated) idea to make a Twitter story out of url shortened links (#urlstory). I’ve been pretty enthusiastic about that – for two hours. A need for an extensive web search to find great sites to be #urlstory’s heroes – this was too much. [3] was Twitter Magnets – a beautiful site where from random words you can create a 140-character poem and send it to Twitter.

This was leading my mind to a single morning coffee conclusion: you don’t have to write down words to create something new and meaningful. You can use the existing ones. We are living in the times of over-content. Maybe instead of adding up it’s good to mash up.

My first #hashtagstory has already landed in Twitterland. It’s ironic, that’s my style:


This was fast. So to be sure nothing escapes, please spend some more time to read “how” and “why”.

How am I doing this?

hashtag mash-up :. As you see the idea is pretty simple – I’m mashing up a few hashtags into a tweet, trying to tell a story.

trendy hashtags :. I’ll try to use as much trendy hashtags as possible. It’s always a way to get a bigger response than trying to draw attention to #goognology.

at least one story a week :. I’ll be delivering at least one #hashtagstory a week, at Sundays. Weekend is good for writing, reading and in my case – hashtagtelling.

Why am I doing this?

new area to explore :. I’m a tech-absurdist. I love technology and at the same time I hate it. With my projects I’m trying to find new ways for literature to express – and all the recent achievements of technology can be useful here. Today’s writer should try to expand into fields never explored before – and prove that technology is no limit for a man.

new dimension to hypertext :. hashtag is a next generation link. So far we had a hypertext literature leading from one single place to another single place. With hashtags you can open an almost endless world of associations and relations. Especially that one single hashtag means something different for anyone who is using it.

the sequence is back :. I’ve been always under a great influence of a story being told by a sequence. Those two stories are not the same: [1] #iPhone #mother #wishes [2] #mother #wishes #iPhone. With a task limited to selecting popular hashtags from the Twitter stream the biggest challenge is to build an interesting story by putting all elements in the right order.

flash fiction is the future :. extremely short pieces of writing are the ones to bring a lot of fresh air into literature. Nanofiction is for me the future of fiction. The new generation of readers is distracted by too many things, the attention span gets shorter and shorter. 5 000 words for a continuous reading – no chance. That’s why any idea to close a story in fewer words is worth considering.

a next step in “write less, tell more” :. this time the simple character, which is pushing the thing forward is “#”. I love it.

language is not a limit :. I’m a Polish writer. I’m not good enough to write short stories by myself in English. But Twitter is such a fantastic place, where you can feel free to create and share what you feel is your best. And find a best way to do it. I’m not good enough for #twitnovel, but I’m good enough for #hashtagstory.

This was supposed to be a short introduction to a piece of literature, but we are living in such times, that an introduction is hundreds times longer than a piece itself. Like this one: #hashtagstory #twitter #inauguration

PS. 25 best hashtagstories are published as a book at Feedbooks.

4 Replies to “A literary Project on Twitter – #hashtagstory”

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