After months of ignoring the very obvious hints, signs, massive blaring fog-horns shouting at me to join Twitter, I have finally given in and joined.
As an aspiring writer I’ve trawled the internet and read countless books about writing which, after talking about passion and creativity and you know – actually WRITING THINGS – all mention the world of social media.
In 2021 we are fully immersed in the age of social media, and have been for some time. Yet I am still living in the deep, dark internet world circa 2008. I have a Facebook account which, after clearing the friends section of ‘random people I met once on the bus’ back in my student days, I have a few hundred people I’ve actually met, or worked with, or like. It’s mostly an online photo album now and occasional stalking forum.
Other than Facebook I don’t have instagram, barely understand the concept of a tik-tok and have avoided becoming embroiled in twitter until yesterday. Why? I suppose fear of the unknown played a part. Perhaps I was worried about having yet another thing to keep me on my phone, another endless scrolling black hole of strangers. I just wasn’t sure I had the energy for it.
Then this happened:
And I really, really, really wanted to be a part of it. The catch – you can’t take part in a Twitter Picture Book Pitch, without, well – being on Twitter.
So I signed up and thought to myself, I could always have a go at this whole #PBPitch thing and if it’s a massive flop then I will just quietly sneak away and press ‘delete account’. No-one will ever have to know…
It’s been 24 hours and I am, of course, completely obsessed. It had never occurred to me how instantly the world of #childrensauthors would open up to me, with very little effort on my part. My homepage/thread/newsfeed (I’m not sure I’ve got at the Twitter-friendly vocab yet) is flooded with other children’s authors – ones like me, starting on their journeys, others who are publishing for the first time this year, right up to famous authors.
I now have access to their tweets, their thoughts, their world. And it’s not just authors – I am also following literary agents and publishers and editors. Of course, it doesn’t actually make me any closer to being published but it makes me feel like I’m a little bit closer to the playground I want to play in. It’s a community of people who are interested in, and talking about, writing for children and that is a very exciting group of which to be a part.
Of course, now I’m blogging about tweeting and tweeting about blogging – it would be very easy to get caught up in the moment and forget why I’m actually here. Between the tweets and the blog and the website and finding my feet on social media, I must remember to make time to actually be creative, to write. Despite my initial fears, I feel energised by this new-found platform, excited to share my ideas and find my wings in this new world.