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“Like” It or Not

Recently, I took part in a flash fiction writing challenge, the #WriteFightGIFClub’s #PhotoStoryPrompt, from writer and Twitter user Radina Valova. Challengers are encouraged to use the photo to inspire a flash fiction piece while adhering to some very basic criteria. Here was this particular prompt:

When I see a flash fiction/writing prompt challenge, I give myself five minutes to find my idea. If I don’t hit on an idea within five minutes, I move on. I think prompts like this one can be great for kick-starting the story-writing process, but I’ve already got a few works-in-progress I’m working on! For this prompt, an idea did come immediately to mind:

Longtime followers should recognize Maggie and Rob from my “Finding Mister Wright” series of slice-of-life stories. If you enjoyed the story, maybe you’ll click “Like” at the end of this post. When you “like” something on a blog like this one, everyone else who comes to this page sees that you did. If you’re on Twitter, if you click “like” on (or “heart”) a Tweet, all of your followers see that you liked it in their own timeline. That’s kind of obnoxious, but I’ll show you a way to stop those “likes” from potentially cluttering up your timeline.

Let’s say you follow a lot of people on Twitter, and those people love to click “like”. What happens is that your own timeline starts to fill up with all of those different “likes”. That can be overwhelming, but here are some steps to keep it under control. Keep in mind that these steps will unilaterally disable likes from a person, so be careful for whom you use them.

Step 1: Click on the down-arrow to the far-right of the Twitter user’s handle/name. You’ll open a drop-down box that looks like this:

Select “I don’t like this Tweet”, to go to the next step.

Step 2: Click on the option that best fits your desire: either Show fewer likes from a user, or Show fewer Tweets from the person they “liked” or retweeted. I’ve blanked out the usernames from this example so I don’t make anybody feel bad. 🙂

Step 3: Once you decide on your choice, you should get the following notification in your timeline:

Remember, this basically turns off ALL likes from that particular user. So, if you want to keep abreast of some of their likes, you’re stuck with all of them. At least until I figure out the next step to share with you!

Did you like my post on Liking in Twitter? How about my flash fiction story? If you’d “like” to participate in the #PhotoStoryPrompt short fiction exercise, head over to Twitter and check it out. There’s a new one every Thursday!

Brain Freeze [Free-write]

Just a bit of free writing on a Sunday morning, inspired by the following Tweet, from fellow writer Sally-Jayne:

The tinny tune wafted on the night breeze, rippling over the burbling canal and along the street, bouncing from brick to brick down the row of tightly-packed houses. Up over the doors kept safe by Yale, Alexor, and Infinite, to the windows above propped open to let in the subtly soothing wind. And more.

Two rooms away, Daddy slept soundly with Mummy beside him. Lily knew he’d wake – both of them would – if she called. If she could call. But when the tune stuttered, skipping on a high C, the breeze fell still, and Lily cringed beneath the covers.

The curtains drifted up without wind, slow arms seeking blindly in the dark. A shadow of a beast loomed between them, head large and misshapen by tiny, crackling crystals.

The Ice-Cream Man had come.

I happened to glance at Twitter this morning, and was struck by this quick idea for a horror story. I’m not good at horror (I’m not good at much of anything, save perhaps drama), but it’s always fun to take a stab at something different.

Thanks again to Sally-Jayne for the prompt! I hope that all of you, too, are finding ways to tap into your own inspiration, whether it’s silly, scary, or the next part of your ongoing story.