Twitter has changed a lot of things when it comes to how the world receives information. It’s most definitely turned journalism on its head by making everyone an amateur reporter, and it’s also affected the way people communicate in real life – 140 characters is a hard constraint to shake off.
But fiction? Could Twitter become a place for great storytelling?
Twitter thinks so. And to prove that, they have just announced the Twitter Fiction Festival. That contest will kick off on November 28th and run for five days.
“Tell us how you are going to explore content formats that already exist on Twitter — short story in Tweets, a Twitter chat, live-tweeting — or, even better, how you’ll create a new one. How will you work with our real-time global platform, where anyone can contribute to your story at any moment? The proposal must fit into the time window of our five day festival— but that means that a project could run for the length of the festival, or just for an hour,” says Twitter in a blog post.
Twitter obviously has a pretty expansive view of what constitutes “fiction” as far this contest goes. Some people have already experimented with Twitter as a fiction medium. Take for instance author Jennifer Egan, who tweeted her story “Black Box” 140 characters at a time back in May.
Or what about The Guardian’s #140novel challenge, which saw authors take a stab at a 140-character story.
He is sad. So sad. She smiles. He smiles. They talk. Hold hands. They kiss. Sparks. Smoke. She explodes. Damn robots. He is sad. #140novel
It’s not just flash fiction that Twitter’s after. They even point to @MayorEmanuel, a parody account, as an example of Twitter fiction.
If you want to participate and you think you have a good idea, you can submit it here. Twitter will announce the participants of the festival on November 19th.