Chapter 1: Welcome. Please Wipe Your Feet at the Door.

Hello.  Thanks for buying my book.  Now that I have your money, the rest of this bloated monstrosity is going to be made up of volumes 1 through 8 of the encyclopedia (Aardvark through The Plague) and a transcript from an episode of Who’s The Boss where there’s some sort of romantic misunderstanding between Tony and Angela.  Enjoy.

You’re still here?  Dammit, this is going to be harder than I thought.  OK, fine.  This is a book about me, which is kind of a self-centered topic, and slightly egotistical, but I’d read a book about YOU, so give me a little leeway.  My name is Rob and I’m a composer for film & television.  I joined Twitter a year ago in an attempt to expand my social network and meet new potential clients.  A year later, I came away with far more than I ever thought possible, both personally and professionally.  I went through a low I wasn’t expecting and a high I didn’t see coming, and I chronicled both on Twitter over the course of the year.

That’s me.  I’m smiling because you bought the book. Yes, you, (insert your name here).  Thank you.

Although it’s somewhat self-indulgent to write a book about yourself, this is as much for you, (insert your name here), as it is for me, because it’s a fun way to learn about Twitter if you’re not on the bandwagon yet.

How, you ask?  Why, you question?  What, you say impatiently?  Oh.  NOW you’re interested in reading the book, huh?  (Note to self: change the title of the book to “Crack” and sell it for twice as much).  When I decided to write this book, I had three reasons for doing so.  One, I wanted to share my story with others so that people might take some tidbit of information about the way I marketed myself on Twitter and apply it to their own lives.  Yes, even pantslessness.  Two, I wanted a place to talk about the myriad of things I’ve gone through and done over the last 12 months (tweeting from the set of a feature film for 11 days, for instance), and maybe make one or two of you laugh.  And Three, I wanted to educate people who aren’t familiar with Twitter on how the site works, what the community is like, and how to make the site and it’s people work for you, no matter what your business is.  For instance, if you collect roadkill off the side of the highway, you might be able to use Twitter to have your “peeps” inform you when there’s something dead in your vicinity.  Just don’t ask me over for dinner.  Unless it’s a cow.  And it’s still fresh.

One of the first things you’ll notice about this book is the frequent use of the “@” symbol, particularly with someone’s name following it.  If you’re not familiar with Twitter, this is a person’s username.  Mine is @RobGokee. It used to be @robgokeemusic, but I shortened it recently.  If you purchased this book in eFormat, you’ll see that every one of those @ names is clickable.  I will be calling out individuals by Twitter name throughout the book.  If you click on their username, you’ll get taken to their Twitter page.  My hope is that, after you’ve read this book, you’ll join the site if you’re not already there and follow the people I talk about.  If I mention them, it’s because I talk to them, read their words, and find them interesting in some way.  Or, in the case of @aaronkaiser, I find their lack of pants in public interesting. I’m just kidding, @aaronkaiser actually dresses better than I do when I show up at some event I wasn’t invited to but decided to crash for the free alcohol.  I’m actually the one with the “pants” issue, but we’ll get into that later.

If you’re reading this fine publication the traditional way (my preferred method), you can still access the Twitter names in the book.  Just go to www.twitter.com and add their @ name at the end of the url, like this: www.twitter.com/robgokee.  You can do this with anyone’s Twitter name in the book.  Just follow @cartermason at your own risk.  When I’m done, you’ll have your own “search engine” of followers, and you’ll already know things about them that are most likely false, but funny.  I kid them because I love them all, and they love me back.  Some of them love me back in a way I’m not entirely comfortable with, like @axisofphilippe, who repeatedly has “boundary” issues.  But I digress.

I’ve decided the best way to tell my story is to break the book up into 12 months and talk about my Twitter experience during each of them.  In Chapter Two, I’ll be providing you with a primer that should be helpful if you’re new to the world of Twitter (feel free to skip it if you’re an “expert” on Twitter, but you risk missing out on jokes.  Lots of them.).  Chapter Three has some background on who I am and where I came from, so you shouldn’t skip that either.  In fact, you should read it twice.  Every chapter is about my life and the part that Twitter played in it.

My goal is to take some of the mystery out of Twitter so that, if you are so inclined after reading this masterpiece, you can jump right in and start “tweeting.”  Yes, that’s a real word, and no, I’m not drunk at the moment (hides wine glass behind computer).

We shall begin our story in the month of October, 2008.  If you get lost…. well, it’s not a difficult read, so if you’re lost I don’t know if I can help you.  Just look at the pretty pictures and wonder why the author is so condescending.

Let’s get this party started.

Look for Chapter 2 on Saturday!

Like the book? Want to own a signed copy, or give one to a loved one as a gift? You can purchase it here!