Posts Tagged ‘Twitter’

My Daily Brain-Food Addiction

Brain Food

About a year ago I began posting a daily quote on Twitter, selected from my eclectic collection and using the hashtags  #TheatricalIntelligence or #WomanofWisdom: 

#TheatricalIntelligence: “I’m curious about other people. That’s the essence of my acting. I’m interested in what it would be like to be you.” Meryl Streep

#WomanofWisdom: “A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.” Maya Angelou  

My Twitter followers enjoyed the quotes. (Some even suggested that I publish them in a “little book series”. Go figure.) Then six months ago on this blog, I shared a series of quotations in categories:  Actors on Acting, A Life in the Arts, On Critics, Criticism and Reading Reviews, among others. 

The tricky part on Twitter, of course, is that one post = 140 characters including the hashtag. So I found myself scavenging for more and more inspiring quotes that were short.

#TheatricalIntelligence: “What I love about theatre is that it disappears as it happens.” Lusia Strus (= 104) 

#WomanOfWisdom: “I believe the rights of women and girls is the unfinished business of the 21st century.” Hilary Clinton (= 124)

Then LinkedIn mimicked Twitter’s hashtag idea, and their posts can be longer so my quotes g-r-e-w, as did their hashtags:

#TheatricalNostalgia, #TheatricalWonder, #TheatricalWisdom, #ArtisticWisdom, #LiteraryWisdom, #WorthConsidering, #WorthRemembering, #LetsDoThis and #PoliticalPoetry. Yikes.

Daily posting became addictive. I began to feel like my friends who never miss the daily NYTimes crossword puzzle, or others who are deeply committed to “Words With Friends” or (what I take to be its visual equivalent) “Candy Crush”

My daily brain food, I’ve concluded, works for me because the words have such meaning when they’re strung together, that I remember them.  I simply love each one of them because they inspire me.   


Is this addiction a terrible thing? How long will it take me to kick the habit? Do I HAVE to? Help!

Twitter Lists!

When Twitter offered its Lists Function a couple of years ago (see my lists on the left) I instantly loved the idea. My free time tends to be in 5-to-10-minute-chunks, and I figured that within each chunk I could catch up with at least one category of people I follow: my fellow theatre passionistas (two-am-theatre) for instance, or my WPO colleagues (women-presidents-organization: my very first list).

I’ve gotten to know my expanded network thanks to my handy lists. And recently my lists began to – um – sort of talk to me; that is, they became reminiscent of audience feedback during previews of new plays. Somewhere midst the unfiltered responses to new work there’s a collective wisdom waiting to be identified. This little idea led me to wonder what I might learn by surveying the lists on which my name appears.

Could I quantify whether or not my Twitter strategy is working, by using my lists?

OMG. Lotta laughs. Lotta lists with funny names. As of today, I am listed on 140 of them. See the sampler below:

These lists are NOT cold, hard data, yet they ARE lots of fun: @Sailert‘s (Tim Sailert) Alas, Poor Yorick list is a puzzler in spite of the Hamlet quote, as is @OhDoctah‘s Bench and @JoeMull‘s Not Spectators (Ideas? Please post comments!)

So is there anything to be learned about the value of my name on 140 people’s lists? Yes. My non-scientific survey concludes:

Influential (non-theatrical) writers and bloggers such as @WillMarlowe, @GoInluence (Maddy Dichtwald) and @ValueIntoWords (JacPointdexter) are consistently engaged, which I find deeply flattering.

I’ve acquired an international following! I’m a Creative American according to @DramaGirl (Kate Foy, from Australia). And have discovered a brilliant Blogger from the Netherlands: @DERagsdale (Diane Ragsdale).

Many followers don’t know what category to put me in (List for Those Who Need a List from @BostonCourt) but we continue our Twitter exchanges. I welcome getting to know their networks.

I am honored by the number of powerful women of all ages with whom I’ve developed relationships: @AnneMessenger, @AndieArthur, @_plainKate_, @devonvsmith.

@Deifell (Tony Deifell) started the social-media meme #wdydwyd (why do you do what you do?) based on a passionate curiosity he has no idea that we share: wdydwyd? I simply adore it.

The biggest surprise is that 3 decades after I stopped performing, my acting career is still with me. “…you can take the girl out of the theatre, but you can’t take the theatre out of the girl”.

I’m encouraged that my Twitter Lists are steadily expanding (as I get back to work on my book!) Please send your peeps my way if any of ’em might have an interest in Theatrical Intelligence.

I’ll be happy to return the favor.

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