Telling a story — in 140 characters or less

Inspired by the micro-blogging service Twitter, a growing number of authors are crafting stories and poems in 140 characters or less, aiming to take advantage of Twitter’s potential as a distribution channel for their creative output, AFP reports. "I’m now at over 6,000 followers on Twitter," the Montreal-based short story writer Arjun Basu said at the 140 Characters Conference, a two-day talkfest devoted to all things Twitter held in New York. "They went out hunting. They killed some large mammals. Later they saw the animals butchered. And one by one they ordered salads that evening," reads one of Basu’s Twitter stories, which he calls Twisters. "The marriage didn’t survive the honeymoon. They acknowledged the majesty of their mistake. But they remained together. Because of the gifts," goes another. Haiku, which lends itself to the 140-character format, is another popular literary form on Twitter. Basu said one of the most satisfying things about Twitter was that it was a "great connector." "As a writer you get instant feedback which for a writer is like catnip," he said. "You get this feedback immediately after you’ve sent something out. It makes the whole process a lot less lonely in a way."

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