Friday, 18 November 2011

Ho Bloody Ho, a Christmas Tale

As the nights grow cold and the days grow short I find my mind turning to more seasonal matters and the creation of little Christmas treats. No, not mince pies or gingerbread stars, but a gift served in 140 character helpings, a new twitter novella for all who care to follow, entitled @HoBloodyHo —it even has flashing lights on the profile pic (when viewed on twitter itself).

This Yuletide story follows the eventful days and bitter thoughts of a man to whom life has not been kind, struggling to find kindness within himself while working as a shopping centre Santa.

Don’t worry it’s not slushy or sentimental; Dickens it isn't.

The tweets will begin being broadcast from Mid December (The exact date has yet to be finalised) and will run right up until Christmas. The story will unfold as a series of tweets by the main character Jim.
After my original experiment with this format for the @BadHairDaze story, first broadcast in April 2010, I’ve learnt that, not only does every tweet need to contribute to progressing the story or characters, but they need to be regular –at least 4 a day. To create a story arc that works over the time period along with the usual 140 character limitations of twitter is both a challenge and an accomplishment for me. Once I start broadcasting the story I cannot stop, or take time out until it is finished. With @BadHairDaze this was a major commitment and I was tweeting from laybys on car journeys even several days from my laptop at wireless hotspots during the London Book Fair. This time round I’ve learnt the benefits of scheduled tweeting via Tweetdeck and I intend to put up each day’s tweets in advance.

Currently the writing is running a little behind schedule, I’m about a third of the way through the process and more than a little nervous about getting it done and edited before it goes out. However, here is a selection of tweets from the work in progress as a twitter trailer.

Tuesday 9.00
Got in this morning, and some joker has messed with the sign overnight; rearranging the letters to say: SATAN’S GROTTO. Like it.

Tuesday 9.30
Wish we could keep it as Satan: Been bad this year, little Johnny? No presents for you then and your immortal soul’s gonna burn in hell. 

Tuesday 15.30
Keiley does all the wrong things for me. I can’t believe she's only 18 –it's the elf outfit, it shows all her bumps too effectively.

Tuesday 16.15
I can't bloody believe it, one of the little SOBs just peed on my lap, I don't have spare trousers issued for such eventualities.

Tuesday 16.30
A quick rinse under the tap in the gents and a towel on loan from Keiley and I'm back in business. Trousers are still wet. #HoHoNo

Tuesday 19.00 
Got to travel home with damp trousers, I'm not looking forward to it; it's perishing out.

Tuesday 20.30
Called Rita’s to speak to the kids. Robby was out again, but Jin was in –we spoke for about a minute; she wanted to watch some TV programme.

The story will be broadcast from mid-December, start following to catch the first tweets as they come out. @HoBloodyHo a Christmas gift to all of twitterdom. Now that’s got to be better than a mince pie.

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