Judy Malloy, Editor

October 2013 Authoring Software Twitter Page

Detail from Jay Bushman: "Loose-Fish #1: "The Good Captain"


Since the early days of the public Internet, there have been works of art and literature created in social networking environments, and there have been short exchanges of cultural dialog on Internet Relay Chat. Twitter, created in 2006, has brought to a wider audience, the opportunity to communicate in a way that is inherently literate -- asking the writer to confine his or her thoughts to 140 characters, a process that takes editing and teaches epigrammatic expression and the ability to convey meaning and layers of meaning in a few words. Twitter also challenges writers and artists to create performative or collaboratively performative works in a medium where the audience can be an intimate circle or friends, an art audience, or even a diverse global audience.

This Authoring Software page on Twitter is a resource in progress and invites contributions of works and references. It includes pointers to the work of three new media writers -- Jay Bushman, Dene Grigar and Mez -- whoo have created works using Twitter and have written about these works on Authoring software. It also features links to articles, documentation, and works that range from CreativeTime Tweets to Chindu Sreedharan's Mahabharata on Twitter -- A Narrative Experiment and were created by new media writers and artists including Man Bartlett; Joseph DeLappe; Mark Marino/LAinundacion; Judd Morrissey and Mark Jeffery; and An Xiao, among many others.

Works Created with Twitter
- Authoring Software Statements

Jay Bushman:
The Loose-Fish Project
Loose-Fish #1: "The Good Captain"

"'The Good Captain' is a science-fiction adaptation of the Herman Melville novella 'Benito Cereno'. Since the story relies heavily on the realtime, flawed POV of its main character, the medium I chose to use was the web service Twitter. Twitter limits its users to updates of 140 characters of text.

In writing the story, I relied on an adaptation method that I use regularly -- I downloaded a public domain e-text version of the original story, and pasted it into Microsoft Word, increasing the font to 16 point and the line spacing to Double, then printing out the story on three-holed punch paper and putting into a binder. The large text and double-spacing allowed me to focus on the line-by-line, beat-by-beat of the original, and the facing blank page is where I wrote the adaptation of. That text was then entered into a specially formatted Word document, using a monospaced font and tweaked margins so that 140 characters of text took up exactly 2 lines of text. When the full story was written, this text was transferred to an Excel spreadsheet, where each grid equaled one story update. Once the story began, I would copy a spreadsheet cell into the Twitter interface and update the main page http://twitter.com/goodcaptain anywhere from 8 to 15 times per day. The full story took four months to unfold."

Visit Jay Bushman's complete statement on the creation of The Loose-Fish Projectto find out more.

Dene Grigar
On the Art of Producing a Phenomenally Short Fiction Collection over the Net
using Twitter: The 24-Hr. Micro-Elit Project

Dene Grigar, The 24-Hr. Micro-Elit Project", 2009

"The 24-Hr. Micro-Elit Project centers on a collection of 24 stories about life in an American city in the 21st Century and involves 140 characters or less delivered -- that is, "tweeted" -- on Twitter over a 24 hr. period. The launch date of the project was Friday, August 21, 2009 beginning 12 AM PST. Each hour until 11 PM, I posted one story, a method of delivery I chose so that others from other parts of the world who wished to participate could do so at a time convenient for them. These "participants" were encouraged to do more than simply read and respond to my work; they were actually invited to tweet their own stories. During the 24 hours of the project as I posted my stories, I also monitored and collected the participants' stories, adding them to the Project Blog. The project resulted in what can be considered an international anthology of micro-fiction comprised of over 85 stories and submitted by over 25 participants from five countries. In this essay, I address assumptions and viewpoints surrounding the art of producing a phenomenally short fiction collection over the net using Twitter."

Visit Dene Grigar's statement on The 24-Hr. Micro-Elit Project" to find out more.

Poetic Game Interventions [V.1]
[from the Twittermixed Litterature Series]

"I began my MMOG interventions in the 90's using the _Everquest_ game interface 2 project/interject in2 the conventional game-chat stream by riffing off other players chatlines and reworking chat sections via poetic manipulations. I'd also mangle logs of these chats and project them into a wider networked sphere by reposting them to various email list forums.

I'm currently extending this type of poetic intervention/textual reworking of game_text during my time playing World of Warcraft. My latest intervention is titled "Twittermixed Litterature" and involves WoW characters ["toons"] on the Bloodscalp Server standing in Ironforge [an in-game location] + live remixing [in_game] chat that occurs between players and guild/character names that rotate past. I then remash these lines [+ any feedback I receive in-game from the players themselves] into a live Twitter stream, making a multi-access channelling or [as I labelled it in the press releases]: 'Twittermixing prefound identity marker texts from live-time character actions in World of Warcraft' and 'MMO Voyeur Aggregationistic Rem(H)ashing...'"

More Twitter Narratives and Performances

  1. Elizabeth Alexander, Billy Collins, Robert Pinsky and Claudia Rankine
    "Four New Twitter Poems", The New York Times, March 19, 2011

  2. Man Bartlett
    __Brian Boucher, "Creative Time's Art of the Tweet", Art in America, May 20, 2011
    __" 1stfans Twitter Art Feed Artist for February 2010: Man Bartlett, Brooklyn Museum

  3. Joseph deLappe
    Reenactment: The Salt Satyagraha Online
    includes Twitter Torture which coincided with the 79th anniversary of Gandhi's post-Salt March imprisonment by the British in 1930. DeLappe's performative work included a daily Twitter-posted reading from the Bush-era Torture Memos.

  4. Brian Feldman
    __"What's Next? (24 Hour Twitter-driven performance art)", Florida Creatives

  5. Neil Gaiman
    __Tanya Paperny, Neil Gaiman's Twitter Story, Lit Drift, October 20, 2009

  6. Joy Garnett

  7. Andrei Gheorghe
    "The Longest Poem in the World"

  8. Jonathan Goldsbie
    "Route 501 Revisited"

  9. David Horvitz
  10. Joseph Kosuth
    1stfans: Twitter Art Feed Archive, Brooklyn Museum, May 2009

  11. Jill Magid:
    #FaustosWitness, CreativeTime Tweets, August 5, 2011

  12. Judy Malloy
    Recreating the BASIC Uncle Roger

  13. Mark Marino/LAinundacion
    The LA Flood Project

  14. Marino, Mark and Rob Wittig, (tempspence)", 2012
    __Jessica Roy, "How The Hills' Spencer Pratt Landed at the Center of a Complex Piece of Twitter Performance Art", BetaBeatJanuary 28, 2012

  15. Tracey Moffatt
    1stfans: Twitter Art Feed Archive, Brooklyn Museum, May 2009

  16. "I write palindromes (... write I)."

  17. Judd Morrissey and Mark Jeffery
    The Precession: An 80 Foot Long Internet Art Performance Poem

  18. Peggy Nelson
    "Peggy Nelson on new media narratives: 'Every Twitter account is a character'", Nieman Storyboard

  19. Mark Sample
    "Postcard for Artisanal Tweeting", The New Everyday, February 24, 2012

  20. Dan Sinker
    The F***ing Epic Twitter Quest of @MayorEmanuel, NY, Scribner, 2011.

  21. Chindu Sreedharan
    __ Mahabharata on Twitter -- A Narrative Experiment, Hindu Blog

  22. John Wray
    __Esther Zuckerman, "Writing Fiction On Twitter: Meet John Wray's Citizen", The Awl, March 25th, 2011

  23. An Xiao
    An Xiao Studio
    __ "The Artist is Kinda Present", Escape, New York City
    __Nate Hill
    "The Limitations of Twitter-Based Art: An Interview with Performance Artist Nate Hill", art:21, October 12th, 2010

Books, Papers, Essays, Discussions, and Online Catalogs
- Twitter works and Culture

  1. Christian Bök, "Some Conceptual Literature on Twitter", Harriet, April 20, 2012

  2. Brooklyn Museum, 1stfans: Twitter Art Feed Archive

  3. CreativeTime Tweets
    "Creative Time Tweets, a series of three commissioned Twitter performances, explores Twitter as a viable place for art that engages audiences, promotes dialogue, and intersects with the physical world. Using Twitter as both an artistic tool and a site for public performance, Man Bartlett, David Horvitz, and Jill Magid will carry out projects in collaboration with their audiences that unfold as Twitter streams."

  4. Diane Farris Gallery, Twitter/Art+Social Media, April 1 - May 1, 2010

  5. Susan Gibb, "NEW MEDIA: Breaking Through The Fourth Wall", Hypercompendia, 2013

  6. Randy Kennedy, "How Do I Love Thee? Count 140 Characters", The New York Times, March 19, 2011

  7. Nicholas Logsdail, founder of Lisson Gallery, "Marina Abramovic's twitter interview", London Art, October 15, 2011 an example of a collaborative interview conducted on Twitter and then formated for publication

  8. Dhiraj Murthy, Twitter: Social Communication in the Twitter Age, Cambridge, U:: Polity, in press, 2012

  9. Matt Phllips, The complete history of Twitter as told through tortured descriptions of it in the New York Times", Quartz, October 2, 2013

  10. Barbara Pollack, "The Social Revolution", ARTnews, June 1, 2011

  11. Carla Raguseo, Universidad del Centro Educativo Lationamericano, Argentina, "Twitter Fiction: Social Networking and Microfiction in 140 Characters", TESL-EJ, 13:4, March, 2010

  12. Rob Wittig, "What is Netprov?", September 7, 2013

  13. Lena Zak
    Social media art brings virtual audiences into cyber galleries
    Twitter, Facebook and Skype are enabling global audiences to interact with live performance
    CNN, August 29, 2011

Books, Papers, Guides, Instructions
Basic Information and Educational Uses
  1. Ryan Cordell, "Creating an Online Scholarly Presence", Storify, 2012

  2. Ryan Cordell, "How to Start Tweeting (and Why You Might Want To)", Chronicle of Higher Education, August 11, 2010

  3. Jeff Dunn, "The Ultimate Guide To Using Twitter In Education, Edudemic, September 12, 2011

  4. Adeline Koh, "Twitter in a Higher Education Classroom: An Assessment", September 18, 2012

  5. André Picard, The history of Twitter, 140 characters at a time, Globe and Mail, March 20, 2011

  6. Ernesto Priego, "How Twitter will revolutionise academic research and teaching", The Guardian, September 12, 2011

  7. Howard Rheingold, "Twitter Literacy (I refuse to make up a Twittery name for it)", San Francisco Chronicle

  8. Tim O'Reilly and Sarah Milstein, The Twitter Book. 2nd Edition, O'Reilly Media, 2011

  9. Twitter Help Center, Twitter Basics

  10. Twitter Help Center, Twitter 101: How should I get started using Twitter?

  11. Wiki: Introduction to Twitter/Microblogging, social media co-lab

For information about the Authoring Software project,
email Judy Malloy at jmalloy@well.com

Last update, October 12, 2013

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