I either have too many Twitter accounts, or I don’t have enough. The fact that I can’t tell which is itself part of the problem.
I said at one point that Twitter could get its own whole post about what I do and don’t — mostly don’t — like about it. I’m not sure that this is that post in fullness, but this is at least a good part of the problem. I actually have four Twitter accounts, simply because of how I ended up engaging with Twitter over time. When I started, I said I didn’t want one, didn’t really like the idea, but didn’t feel I could avoid it, so I made a private account with which to keep up with my friends. Then I saw that a lot of people were making “after dark” accounts to hold their smut, which seemed like a good idea, so I made one of those as well. Then, on some advice from Hope Clark, I made a public-facing account so I could engage with people I didn’t know, for all that fills some of my organs with ichor. And then, on a whim, I made a project account to experiment with the creation of communication without words.
So, question number one is, when I want to say something, where do I say it?
One of those outbound feeds is easy; th’ buni’s voice is entirely pictoral. It’s there as a writing exercise, and as a way of practicing being in a particular headspace. You’d think the after-dark feed would be easy, but as a writer of erotica, it feels weird to consign my porn to some heavily-filtered space. It sends entirely the wrong message about my writing and my relationship with it. I was posting smut on the internet before I realized that doing so would be associated with my government alias, so searching for my name turns up kinky animal-people doing what comes unnaturally, and I’m fine with that. The personal account seems like it’d be good for local goings-on, except there’s a lot of people who aren’t local who follow it. The public account should be for writing, but I end up using it for a lot of conversations about topics that aren’t writing, simply because I can retweet things with that account that I can’t with either of the others because it’s not marked as a private account.
The inbound side is even crazier. I’d like my “writing account” to be work-safe, so I can keep up with it while I’m at my day job, but there’s a lot of other people that I follow who are as proud of their porn as I am of mine… only their porn is graphic and mine is textual. When I don’t flag my work as pornography, people get a wall of text about heaving bosoms and thrusting loins. When artists don’t flag their work as erotica, I get a screen full of furry boob, wang, slit, or possibly the Big Combo. Now, I loves me the sampler platter, as well as all the à la carte options, but I hate having to explain to my coworkers how the rat thinks all twelve inches are going to fit into that tiny fox’s ass, lube or lust be damned. I’d love it if I could convince most of the people who casually reference my private non-AD account to instead reference my public one when talking about me, but my private one uses a name that I’ve been using for years, and the Literorrery, for better or worse, still feels kind of “brand”-ish. However clever it is, it’s a public face, not a name. It’s the product that the Mechano-Alchemical Pornograph outputs, not the pornograph herself.
The Mechano-Alchemical Pornograph is most definitely a post for another time. There’s something to be done with/for/to/about her.
The worst part, though, is that all this vexation assumes that I could even nail down people to belonging to just stream as though they were any less complicated than I am! Anyone who publishes multiple streams of content in the same account is going to give me heartburn, because I either default to only following that stream from the tightest control necessary, or letting scandalous material pervade my more public reading material and risk the awkward questions, or simply not read Twitter at work. Several folks I know maintain multiple accounts, but then they repost their own content in case followers in one space don’t see things in others, so all my efforts to tidily match my account management goes out the window when other people intentionally break the scheme. A few people I know have multiple accounts, but “which account gets what content” is more a matter of “how widely do I want to be heard” than “what kind of content is this,” which is totally fine, but again causes me to pull at my fur while I try to figure out how to sort content.
It’s worth stating, for the record and so everyone can hear it, that I’m not saying “you’re doing it wrong.” Everyone is using the tools as they see fit, and the tools themselves aren’t limited in how they’re used. There’s no proscribed methodology, and nobody is breaking any kind of actual rule here. Everyone is fine and I endorse everyone here who may think I’m talking about them doing exactly what they’re doing and no I don’t want you to change. What I’m trying to do is capture the essence of why Twitter as a tool is difficult for me and my brain to manage. The only way I could possibly get it really to do what I want is to convince every last one of you that I’m following, somehow, to adhere to some kind of artificial standard of engagement and usage. I know from experience that as soon as I published anything close to that, at least two competing standards would arise, camps would emerge, hashtags would trend, the whole thing would get very silly very quickly, and we’d be no closer to actually sorting out the original problem.
So, I make do as best as I can, though it feels something like a losing battle. That means that I follow some accounts twice, and I follow some people from one account when I should be following them from another. Some people should really be on an after-dark account but I keep them in the public feed and gloss past the porny bits. About all I can really do is say that I’d like people to start thinking of my old locked account as deprecated-for-most-purposes. If you know what it is and you’re following it, go follow my public one. It’s going to get most of the shiny bells and whistles first. And maybe in the future, if I do a massive rebranding exercise and decide to give the Pornograph primacy, I’ll unblock the AD account and tell you all to go there instead.
They know the limits ’cause they cross them every night.