And Speaking of Vanity Publishing…

…heeeeere’s Tweetbookz!

Tweetbookz will turn your tweets–those 140-character electronic messages about what you had for breakfast this morning or maybe something more interesting or important, but either way, quickly written and just as quickly forgotten–into Real Paper Books. That’s right. Your evanescent 140-character pearls of prose (or not) can be enshrined for the ages in softcover or hardcover.

You can include up to 200 tweets (though you can’t add new ones or alter old ones to make yourself look smarter or more witty), and choose from four different designs. The cost: nothing upfront. But if you want to buy the books–as gifts, maybe, ’cause, yanno, all your friends who are already following you would love to have a permanent version of the tweets they missed because they were tweeting too, and maybe an actual physical book o’ tweets might convince your parents or your spouse that “twittering” isn’t a waste of time (oh wait, maybe not)–it’s $30 for the hardcover and $20 for the softcover.

Curiously, you cannot buy others’ tweetbookz. But you can buy gift certificates, to encourage your friends to create their own.

Really. I mean, really. Does anyone need this silly service (apart from its founders, who hope to make money from it, and no doubt will)? Could vanity publishing get any more vain? On the other hand, I do find it kind of interesting, in that we’re daily bombarded by paeans to the brave new digital world–yet here it is, defaulting back to print.

Please, if anyone is thinking of gifting me with their tweetbook(z), or with a gift certificate for one of my own…don’t. Just…don’t.

Because of the lack of reader eyeballs over the holidays, I won’t be blogging again till next week. Happy holidays, everyone, and safe travels!


  1. Im sure some people will buy this just because its so ridiculous… The same way you'll buy a stupid little figurine or what-not just because its so silly that you have to show it to your friends.

  2. Un-be-freaking-lievable!

    Yet another bit of foolishness which proves P. T. Barnum right!

    Twitter can be a good PR and networking tool. I use it for that. But never would I think my evanescent announcements are worth putting in permanent form.

    I have much better things to write for publication.

  3. The idea behind this may well have come from 'shit my dad says', a collection of tweets which is or has been published, non-vanity I believe.

    A young man (living in his parents' basement – very nerdy, eh?) started tweeting the remarks of his father. Frankly, they're pretty funny – a collection of remarks from a rather grumpy, politically-incorrect and grumpy gent.

    I would agree that 99.9% of all tweets are meaningless trivia which do not deserve publication and which, in fact, do not deserve even their evanescent electronic existence.

  4. A 200 tweet max and the inability to buy other people's books? No thanks. This might actually be a good idea. Think of all those tweet fiction channels. But the limits need to be lifted, and the prices need to go way down.

  5. First it was books published by them dank vanity presses, then blogs, now tweets!

    This is an abomination on the sacred house of publishing. Worse than what them Thomas Nelson's and Harlequin's, with their Harlot Horizons did. I'm writin' to RWA, MWA, TWA, the WWF, and anyone else who'll listen.

    Dag Nabbit!
    (author implodes for thanksgiving)

  6. It's silly enough some people I'm sure will sign up.

    Vanity has no limits, after all; it all boils down to how much we're willing to pay for it.

  7. Is this a joke? I'm behind on all the twitter stuff…haven't gotten on to it yet, so I am truly wondering–is this for real?

  8. There's a few things like this for blogs, so it doesn't surprise me someone's made a twitter version. Though at least making a book out of a blog makes slightly more sense, especially if you're serious about journalism blogging, or have been installment publishing a novel. Or you're quite vain.

  9. Eh, it's hard for me to hate on this too much. I mean, yeah, it's overpriced and dumb, but at least they aren't trying to trick anyone into thinking this is their way to publishing fame, or suck thousands of dollars out of some poor suckers. To me, it reads less like a typical vanity publishing scam, and more like someone trying to grab some money off of the latest social networking bandwagon. (How's that for a mixed metaphor?)

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NOVEMBER 23, 2009

From Novelists Inc. Issues Position Statement on Vanity Publishing

NOVEMBER 24, 2009

New Name for Harlequin Horizons: DellArte Press