David Mitchell Is Going To Tell us a Story, One Tweet At A Time

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In a not entirely unprecedented move - Jennifer Egan, Neil Gaiman and Philip Pullman have already done this before – David Mitchell, the award-winning author of Cloud Atlas, has written a new short story and will release it over Twitter.

David Mitchell David Mitchell in London for a screening of the movie adapation of his book, Cloud Atlas. Photo: Getty 2013, Stuart Wilson

The story, about a boy tripping on his mother's Valium pills, will be told Tweet by Tweet – using 280 updates, to be exact - over the next seven days. “Once the idea that I could use Twitter as a storytelling medium bit me, it wouldn't leave me alone,” said the author of his new project, according to The Guardian.

More: Cloud Atlas: So Complicated Halle Berry and Tom Hanks Just Had to Smoke Pot

"The story is being narrated in the present tense by a boy tripping on his mother's Valium pills. He likes Valium because it reduces the bruising hurly-burly of the world into orderly, bite-sized 'pulses'. So the boy is essentially thinking and experiencing in Tweets," added Mitchell. 

"My hope is then that the rationale for deploying Twitter comes from inside the story, rather than it being imposed by me, from outside, as a gimmick. Usefully, the Valium also lets me walk that 'Turn of the Screw' tightrope between the fabulous and realism: maybe the supernatural events are really happening, or maybe they're just chemical phantasms."

The first Tweet has already gone out (on Monday July 14). “We get off the Number 10 bus at a pub called ‘The Fox and Hounds’. ‘If anyone asks,’ Mum tells me, ‘say we came by taxi.’” it reads. Starting from today, ‘The Right Stuff’ will be revealed in 20-tweet bursts, at 7am and 5pm daily for the next seven days.


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