Best Laid Twitter Plans (Post 12)
Posted on December 16, 2012
So, those of you who follow me on twitter (@beckydonohue) may have noticed an increase in volume of tweets as of late. That’s because I have decided to worship at the church of @amandapalmer and have christ-wine with @robdelaney. Okay, there was so much blasphemy in that last paragraph I almost don’t know where to begin in chastising myself. Wait, I don’t care. Oh yeah, I’m a comedian and a writer and a lover, not a fighter so I can say weird sh*t.
But, it’s true. It’s true. I have officially drink, drank, drunk the Kool-Aid.
I’m making plans. As I wind down the steady stream of blog posts with 365 quickly approaching, I’m trying to decide what to do next. I know I’ll continue the blog, but probably around 3 times per week. That will give me time to read other people’s blogs some more and to interact like I used to when this all first started. With my steady writing schedule now, I just can’t do it. However, 3x per week or so sounds more manageable.
Now, I say I’m worshiping at the churches of @amandapalmer and @robdelaney because I just feckin’ am. They are Twitter giants and as such they are masters of their own careers. Oh, how I’ve always wanted to be master of my own career.
The tipping point for me, has to do with a speech that I read of Patton Oswalt’s. Patton read the speech at this past summer’s Montreal Comedy Festival. Here is an excerpt:
“Hey, ‘know what I was thinking the other day? Everything I know about succeeding as a comedian and ultimately as an artist is worthless now, and I couldn’t be happier about that.”
Patton goes on to say that you used to make it on Carson. That’s how you did it as a comedian. You worked out your set, over and over again, got on Carson, he called you to the couch, and your career was made. Bing, Bang, Boom. In a few months, you had a house and a job.
Not anymore. Not ever for me because I wasn’t born into the Carson generation of comedians.
Patton takes us further…
“What I mean is: Not being lucky and not being given are no longer going to define your career as a comedian and as an artist. Remember what I said earlier about those bulletproof headliners who focused on their 5 minutes on the Tonight Show and when it ended they decided their opportunity was gone? They decided. Nobody decided that for them. They decided. Now, look at my career up to this point. Luck, being given. Other people deciding for me. In the middle of the TV shows and the albums and the specials, I took a big chunk of my money and invested it in a little tour called The Comedians of Comedy. I put it together with my friends, we did small clubs, stayed in shitty hotel rooms, packed ourselves in a tiny van and drove it around the country. The tour was filmed for a very low-budget documentary that I convinced Netflix to release. That became a low-budget show on Comedy Central that we all still own a part of, me and the comedians. That led to a low budget concert film that we put on DVD. At the end of it, I was exhausted, I was in debt, and I wound up with a wider fan-base of the kind of people I always dreamed of having as fans. And I built that from the ground up, friends and people I respected and was a fan of. And I realize now I need to combine both of the lessons I’ve learned.
I need to decide more career stuff for myself and make it happen for myself, and I need to stop waiting to luck out and be given. I need to unlearn those muscles.
I’m seeing this notion take form in a lot of my friends. A lot of you out there. You, for instance, the person I’m writing to. Your podcast is amazing. Your videos on your YouTube channel are getting better and better every single one that you make, just like when we did open mics, better and better every week. Your Twitter feed is hilarious.”
Okay, Sweet Mother is back. Let’s just say, “Checkmate.” That’s the effect Patton’s speech had on me. I’ve been teetering on the edge of going the rogue route for sometime now, Patton’s comments simply pushed me right into the feckin’ pool.
So, I’m going to try and do something crazy. One small thing. And that is…
I’m going to try and get as many Twitter followers (through quality content) as someone who is on TV regularly might get through pure name recognition.
The magic number is 100,000. That’s the number that feels right. It’s the number that a writer or panelist on Chelsea Lately could procure quite easily. It’s the number that a Jersey Shore meat-head or a band with some MTV play could score quite quickly.
I don’t think it will be quick for me.
100,000 motherfeckin’ Twitter followers simply by writing good jokes and posting good shit – that is going to be HARD.
Anyway, I’m going to try it. I’d say I’ve initiated this project over the last week or so and my Twitter followers have gone up from approx 1,500 to 2,186 (as of writing this post). That’s around 600 followers in a week.
At that rate and if the math stays consistent, I’ll have reached my goal in approx 166 weeks or around 3.2 years.
Holy feck, that’s a long time.
I do think at one point, the momentum of followers added takes on a life of its own. At least I’m hoping it does or I will fail at this. So, can it be done in a year? I have no idea, but I’m going to give it a try…
What about you? Do you like Twitter? What’s been your experience with it?
Sweet Mother is updated daily-ish on the quest to 365 posts. Join me, I’m in the home stretch. Click that “follow” button at the top right of the blog.
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