February 2012 has 29 days. They’re my last 29 days of being 29. I’ve decided to tell my life story in 29 tweets. You can play, too, if you like.
Subverting a medium
The ethos of Twitter is as a live blogging site, for very up-to-the-minute information, written in the moment, each tweet a stand-alone artefact.
But one of the joys of life is taking something and using it for something other than its intended purpose. I’ve decided to do just that, and use Twitter to tell an epic story, something that is carefully crafted and written, and then released on Twitter. I’m hoping to use the medium’s restrictions to create artistic possibilities.
I also wanted to do a wee project to mark turning 30 next year. I realised 2012 is a leap year, and I turn 30 in March, so my last 29 days of being 29 will be a special sort of 29 days. So I decided to combine the two ideas, and use Twitter to tell my life story (so far) over those 29 days. I’ve set up a Twitter account (@29tweetsproject) to tell the story.
I’m trying to craft it to be as good a read as I can, and it’ll be an interesting experiment, but my life story is probably of interest to relatively few people. So I figured the whole thing might be even more interesting if other folk wanted to join in. So, if you want to play, too, tweet me (@29tweetsproject), or comment below with your Twitter name. I’ll curate an open ’29tweetsproject’ list through that (unfortunately we can’t use hashtags because there’s no room in each tweet – see rules below).
You don’t have to be 29 – in fact it’d be cool if we can get a mix of ages, and a mix of people generally.
What’s the point?
To play around and have fun. If lots of people join in then I do have a few ideas about how the ’29tweetsproject’ might evolve (and I might set up a dedicated blogspace if it get busy), but there’s no overarching philosophical or commercial aim or any of that nonsense. I just think projects like this are kinda cool. lf no-one else wants to join in then I’ll just have fun by myself, but things are normally more fun if other people play, too.
- One tweet a day over the 29 days of February should come together to chronologically tell the story of your life so far. The point is to write them all in advance – I’ve started already – so that it’s all planned and crafted. You can use stuff like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to then queue the release of your pre-written tweets from the 1st to the 29th of February.
- The chronology doesn’t have to be relative – skip the dull stuff and then write five tweets covering the same month if you like. Everything should be in essence true; but little details get blown up, glossed over or mis-remembered, which is a normal part of biography.
- Each tweet must be exactly 140 characters long. Extra shiny bonus points for including a relevant hashtag, @reference or link.
- Break the rules or make more of your own if you like.