Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Tweet tweet?

I remembered just in the past couple of days that March 10th was officially the eighth anniversary of my blog. Though I have sometimes been an abysmally bad blogger, or a mysteriously absent blogger, there are some of you who might have actually been reading the blog for eight years now (and a big thank you for that, as well as to those who found me more recently).

A few years ago, not long after I started working as a co-publisher of Furrowed Middlebrow books with Dean Street Press (our first books were released in 2016, which also seems impossible--time really does fly!), Rupert at Dean Street suggested it might be a good idea for me to have a Twitter presence. Four and a half years later, I've decided to follow his suggestion. (You see what Rupert has to put up with working with me--it takes a while for an idea to sink in.)

Yep, believe it or not, there is now a Furrowed Middlebrow Twitter account, @FurrowedMiddle, and I've now issued my first profound tweets. For those who know nothing about Twitter (i.e. me, about two weeks ago), there's a maximum length of 15 characters for a Twitter handle, "FurrowedMiddlebrow" is 18 characters, you do the math. Andy and I brainstormed for abbreviations, clever variants, etc., but they were all either too distant from the blog name or even more lame, so @FurrowedMiddle it is.

I have to explain what finally seduced me into becoming a twit (surely there should be an umbrella term for folks who tweet, and that's the obvious one). A couple of weeks ago, Rupert emailed and said (paraphrasing), "I know you're not into Twitter, but you might want to have a look, as Lissa Evans [television producer/director and author of novels including Their Finest Hour and a Half and Crooked Heart] and Lucy Mangan [Guardian journalist and author of bestselling non-fiction including most recently Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading] have been tweeting about our books." Good heavens! This in addition to a mention at the Washington Post here, thanks to commenter "kate208"…

So I figured out the password to the personal account I hadn't used since 2014, logged in, was suitably impressed and appreciative to be getting such kind and wondrous attention, and then ... got completely sucked in and starting reading tweets from everyone I could think of (authors, fellow bloggers, publishers, maybe just a quick glance at Cher's--whew she's intense!), decided this was pretty cool, discovered that Hermione Lee's next bio is of Anita Brookner which sounds like a dream come true, discovered Francesca Wade's next book will be about Gertrude Stein which, ditto, and now I'm hooked.

I'm hoping that Twitter will provide a way to share some of the author quotations, contemporary reviews, miscellaneous reading, random thoughts, and stray tidbits that I come across and think "I really should do something with this for the blog," but never get round to compiling into a post. Twitter is a bit more "ready aim fire" than a blog is. So I hope it will be entertaining for you in its own way, if you choose to follow. I'll also link to new blog posts, of course, so you can keep up with the blog that way as well.

I would also like to ask for help and suggestions from those of you who are also on Twitter. I'll be feeling my way for a time, so please don't hesitate to comment here or email me with ideas, tips, critiques, and cautionary tales.

Only a few days into my vacation and already getting into trouble...


  1. Am anti-tweet and virulently anti-facebook but realise I am an unashamed Luddite as regards social media so I will wish you well and go back into my cave :-)

  2. Never have ever tweeted, or facebooked - barely can do my email. BUT, good for you, and I admire that you know how to do all this stuff!

  3. have fun tweeting - I'll stick to reading your blog!

  4. Wonderful news about the Brookner bio! And how exciting to have caught the notice of Lissa Evans, although I'm not surprised having listened to her on Backlisted several times. I don't have a Twitter account but do enjoy visiting here so keep passing on the news, Scott!

  5. Be very careful, or you will see your actual reading time cut in half, and I am not exaggerating. I decided in November to cease my Twitter activity altogether, and hours of my day came back to me.

  6. Good for you, Scott. I'm not a troglodyte, but the logistics of twitter is beyond me. I occasionally tweet, I follow those I'm interested in, I even have some followers myself. But any time I go onto Twitter, I find a smattering of tweets from people I'm following. I poke around a bit, but then I leave for another month or so.

  7. I've followed you, all my book reviews go onto Twitter automatically (set up on WordPress) so I'll make sure I @ you in the subject lines as well as DSP. Exciting!


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