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Twitter is an ideal continuing education tool for content writers. Here's who to follow to stay up-to-date.
Working as independent freelance writers, we sometimes feel isolated from colleagues in the writing world. Since our workplace is online, social media offers us a way to plug in to the far-flung community of writers and word-lovers. Here are half a dozen Twitter accounts that provide a rich assortment of tools, context, support and resources.
1. AP Stylebook
While most serious content writers already subscribe to the AP Stylebook, their Twitter accountadds a whole new layer of value for free. The AP style team generates a steady stream of tweets related to correct form and usage for all trending topics and names. It tosses in helpful grammatical tidbits and starts conversations about emerging changes in the language. Sample tweet:
AP Style tip from our Food Guidelines: plonk is a slang term for low-quality wine. — AP Stylebook (@APStylebook) August 29, 2014
2. Grammar Bytes
This Twitter account doesn't yet have a giant number of followers, but it's definitely up-and-coming. The brainchild of a grammar fan named Robin Simmons, Grammar Bytes is a charmingly well-designed website that offers exercises, handouts, videos, quizzes and more. The site even includes a free online grammar course, which saw an enrollment of over 4,000 in its first month. Sample tweet:
3. PR Newswire
With over 82,000 followers, this is an active site crammed full of helpful information for writers. In addition to nuts-and-bolts grammar hints, PR Newswire tweets helpful links related to fact-checking, social media posting and all aspects of where marketing and writing meet. Sample tweet:
4. Oxford Dictionaries
For those writers simply in love with words, Oxford University Press offers a rich collection of oddities and guidelines. You might wonder just how a dictionary site can offer interesting tweets, but once you start following this one, you're likely to find yourself mesmerized by strange and quirky linguistic byways. Sample tweet:
5. Business 2 Community
This Twitter account is created by the online community of business-related bloggers at the B 2 C website. Their tweets are focused on content creation from the perspective of business owners, so they provide great context for writers looking to broaden their overall marketing knowledge. Sample tweet:
6. Jon Winokur
A highly respected guide and commentator on the fine art of writing, Jon Winokur generates tweets about the universal mystery and struggle of being a writer. Following this Twitter account will serve as a palate cleanser to content producers whose relationship to writing springs from more than the need to earn a paycheck; his tweets are a portal into the serious literary world.
One of Twitter's great virtues is that it comes in bite-sized pieces, so it lets you come up for air in the midst of a writing project and take a few minutes to connect with people who care about the same things you do. In addition to offering mental refreshment, following a few writing-related Twitter accounts will deepen your craft in unexpected ways.
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