“Turn the lights down, the party just got wilder.” – Dan Rather
At the risk of sounding socially inept, I‘m confessing that I didn’t know how to party 21st-century style. Tired of being left out of the fun, I turned to my friend, Sandy Lender, for help. Kindly she agreed to be my guest blogger to explain the process.
Fantasy enthusiasts will recognize Sandy Lender as the author of the breakout novel Choices Meant for Gods and a leader of workshops on world-building and characterization. Her four-year degree in English and seventeen-year career in magazine publishing augment her book publishing experience for a variety of presentations. So without further ado I turn you over to Sandy, the party girl.
Online social media demand we flex our networking muscles, and Twitter constantly provides innovation in this gymnasium. If you’re new to the Twitter community, please check out the definitions at the end of this article for some of the terminology we’ll use. For those of you well-versed in tweeting, let’s take a look at a phenomenon that even veteran twitterers wrinkle their brows over—Twitter parties.
Some social networkers refer to a Twitter party loosely, defining it as an event IRL where twitterers from a local area get together to network. In public. That takes organizational skills.
A Twitter party in its true form takes place online, on a Twitter platform. Twitter users participate in a common discussion about a specific topic. They find each other’s tweets and replies by use of a common hashtag. To make this easier, users can employ applications such as Tweetdeck (my personal favorite Twitter tool and which you really must download (for free) through Adobe AIR), Tweetchat, the regular Twitter page, Tweetgrid, Twhirl, etc.
It’s as simple as that.
A Twitter party that visitors to this blog would have an interest in is #editorchat, which meets on Wednesday evenings. I’m usually in on an all-day party called #musicmonday and another called #winewednesday. Of course I don’t participate all day long, nor is that kind of participation required.
To participate in a Twitter party using the above-mentioned Tweetdeck, click on the third icon across the row of gray icons available at the top of the Tweetdeck screen. This is the “mentions” icon. It will provide you a “mentions” column, which brings up tweets that include your username by default. At the bottom of the column, click on the third gray icon, which is the “filter” icon, and a small text box will open. Type in your party’s hashtag, press the “enter” button on your keyboard, and let Tweetdeck find all the tweets in your group for you.
To participate in a Twitter party using the above-mentioned Tweetchat, click on the blue link in the top right of the Tweetchat home screen where it tells you to log in. Log in using your Twitter account information. When it presents you with a text box, type in your party’s hashtag. When it gives you the option, click the “enter room” button. By using Tweetchat, you won’t have to type the hashtag each time you type a 140-character post. It automatically tacks on the hashtag for you.
To participate in a Twitter party using the regular Twitter page, use the search function to enter your party’s hashtag. Use the “refresh” button to update frequently. This is the least efficient of all the options out there, in my opinion, but can get the newcomer started in a new, yet important, networking arena.
I welcome folks to join my Twitter followers crowd.
“Some days, you just want the dragon to win.”
Tweet: the 140-character or less post made on Twitter
RT: retweet (a very polite thing to do if you read a tweet that you like)
Hashtag: a word, tag, phrase, shortcut following the “#” symbol that is used to let readers/followers know that your tweet belongs to a specific discussion
Twitterer: a person with a Twitter account who posts tweets
Follower: a person who follows your account and reads your tweets
IRL: in real life
Thank you, Sandy. Your post has me in the party spirit and anxious to try out what I’ve learned. Be sure to check out Sandy’s website. Choices Meant for Gods is available now and the intense sequel Choices Meant for Kings will be released soon. What Choices We Make is also available now.
When leaving a comment or question for Sandy or me, feel free to include your Twitter link. Maybe we can all party together one day soon.
Thanks for stopping by.
Tags: Sandy Lender, Twitter Party, network, on line social media, hashtag, tweeting, followers,