Restrictions provoke creativity, my mother (who is also a writer) always reminds me. Meanwhile, Anne Lamott, in the book on writing Bird by Bird, swears that major writing projects can begin with “just what I see through the one-inch picture frame.” So when I learned about the Tiny Truths contest in the literary journal Creative Nonfiction, I had to try it. What could squeeze the wide, flowing world of possibilities into a smaller frame than a Twitter-scale essay?
A few recent compositions, submitted publicly, as they all are, through Twitter:
@pattywetli: I take a deep breath and dial. She picks up on the second ring. Her voice doesn’t sound like cancer, it sounds like Amy.
@myurbanwild: Teeter-totter talk: Girl asks, “How do you know two people are married?” Boy shrugs, says, “They’re yelling at the same kids.”
The idea is to “tell a true story in 130 characters (or fewer)” on Twitter. With the spare 10 characters, add the hashtag #cnftweet. If you do all of that and follow @cnfonline, you have a chance to win the micro essay contest for that day. How do the winners know? They achieve a coveted “favorite” ranking from CNF. They may also find themselves featured in the next issue of Creative Nonfiction, alongside about 10 other tweeps.
I found this a delightful, bite-sized challenge that got my creative energy flowing.
Ready to try it? Okay. Go! Add your micro essay as a comment on this post. Don’t forget to tell us your Twitter handle or share a link to the tweet.