By Anne Rhee
“Twitter Girls” is a satirical experimental prose piece that deals with the insecurities of a young writer.
i. their tweets are always all lowercase letters, sparse punctuation, spacing between the last letter of the last word of a sentence — i guess you could call them pleasing to read. it’s a pronounced aesthetic, singularity of prose that has become an identity, in and of itself. ii. i’m jealous of them—they tweet about subjects that are so uncommon and non-conformist that they become special: indie bands, non-mainstream hulu tv shows, writing accolades. of these categories, i do not belong to any of them. in a way, i am free from confinement, and yet also lacking as though there is something i am missing out on. iii. i am told there is a twitter writing community. it is elusive — deemed “niche” — and there is an air of elitism around its rhetorical presence. iv. i am not sure how to gain membership to this community. v. then again, there never is a membership process to becoming a writer. it, like being a twitter girl, is an identity category in practice only. its components do not define it, but when in practice, it is defined. vi. i imagine what my twitter account will look like if i become a twitter girl. how many double exclamation marks will be in my tweets? will my twitter bio include the names of the publications my work has been published in? will i tweet solely in lowercase? vii. tweeting in lowercase is like messy handwriting — it's the closest someone can get to creating personality visually when typing. it’s informal, the words all together seem smaller on the screen, there is a nuanced minimalism to them. it is straightforward, subtle, direct and authoritative, all in one. and in that sense, typing in lowercase is a sense of security. vii. but life is anything from being concise like a tweet; i am never content with how i express myself, words and half-regurgitated sentences, unspoken thoughts dangling in the air. viii. i tell myself concision is a social construct. i am the very opposite — i write like i am catching words, words that are running away from me, that i have only brushed the fingertips of. my sentence structure, all with the awkwardness of a first date. my paragraphs, bloated and unseemingly; they seem to weigh a thousand pounds. vix. i console myself by writing tweets in my head. they are, to say the very least, pretty. to say the very most, they mean nothing. x. the discovery of an entire community of teen writers has caused me to revert to introvertedness. i am now, more than ever, scared and greedy at the same time — greedy to find other writers, and yet scared because i am not ready to share the scars of my writing yet. xi. i am a list-maker in the end. my friends do not really know who i am, perhaps they never will. admittedly, if i continue on like this, i will perhaps never be known. that is alright too, i am a collector of pretty words, pretty nonsenses that are only alive when i hold their hand. they breathe their last breath of life when i release their hand. i release their hand when it becomes limp, fluid, an empty balloon sack of sunlight. i marvel: what happened to their clammy, jelly-like desperation to clutch at life? xii. i am a cynic, a pessimist, i am too easily dissatisfied and i don’t give myself enough credit. but you tell me my writing is too dramatic, not subtle enough, and i smile and send you a thank-you email. after all, i am grateful for your feedback. but i’m still a child, still [yeh-min-ae] when it comes to my writing. xiii. xiv. i will become a twitter girl someday. after all, in writing this, i have already made the first step.
I initially wrote this piece on the Notes app on my phone in an epistolary, short vignette list form. Eventually, the piece grew in length after much editing, but the initial form remained the same.
Anne Rhee is a writer based in NYC. She began writing poetry for fun three years ago and has recently started writing short stories and different multimedia pieces. She likes to focus on themes such as immigration, generational divides, and language. Her pieces have been published in the Girls Write Now Anthology and the Stuyvesant Spectator. She was also a recipient of two Bronze Honorable Mentions from the Scholastic Writing competition. In her free time, she likes to make Pinterest boards, lists, and listen to Ariana Grande.