Entirely too many people try to be funny and somehow they all seem to come out of the woodwork on Twitter. When these people pollute my feed, I partially blame Julieanne Smolinski (@BoobsRadley) for making it look so easy. It isn’t, so stop it and just fav, RT, and comment on the tweets of people you like and/or wish you could have sex with like the rest of us.
The L.A.-based writer and performer with a multitude of credits including GQ, McSweeney’s, Jezebel and Vulture, to name a few,moonlights as a Twitter juggernaut (even being deemed one of the funniest women on Twitter by the Huffington Post) and has amassed a six-figure-strong following with her on-point hilarity of 140 characters or less. You may remember her from the New York Times crossword fiasco, where she pointed out the incorrect use of some hip-hop terminology in an answer, which was even declared correct by the Beastie Boys’ Mike D on The Colbert Report.She is a funny person, an excellent writer, and Twitter just seems to also be her thing. I can just hear the chorus of a thousand hipsters: “But I’m also a funny, excellent writer and Twitter’s my thing too.” No, it’s most likely not. Just deal with it; very few people can touch @BoobsRadley.
Julieanne Smolinski is originally from Ohio and started writing at a young age. “My mother taught me to use a typewriter at a pretty early age, and I think the first thing that I wrote was a short story about a boarding school where parents who didn’t love their children sent them to be murdered,” she says. See, it’s just constant hilarity with her.
She joined Twitter without realizing that she could gain such a huge following. “I signed up for it like I signed up for Facebook. You know, because other people were doing it and I have crippling fear of being left out,” she explains. But it definitely turned into something more.
So how in the hell do you get 120,000 followers on Twitter (in addition to being repeatedly funny of course)? I know I’ve never understood how this happens, but Ms. Smolinski obviously does.
“When I started tweeting regularly, I was working as a website editor for a media company, so most of the people I knew and interacted with were editors, writers, journalists, bloggers, plus a few comedians and storyteller-circuit types I’d just met living in New York. I naturally kind of picked up followers in that realm, and a lot of them were people who just used Twitter to communicate or share links or kind of ‘status update,’ and I was immediately kind of this one-liner person. I really picked up speed when Roger Ebert retweeted a joke I made about French New Wave films. From there, stuff sort of snowballs.”
I think most women have faked an orgasm to "move things along," so I'm not sure why everybody on that conference call was so weirded out.
So to be so funny so consistently, she must spend countless hours scribbling down potential tweets on loose leaf, dramatically ripping them out, balling them up, and haphazardly tossing them into a large pile, right?
“A lot of times I’ll just think of a joke or something when I’m on a train, and either write it down or tweet it immediately. I’ve gone days without tweeting before and I don’t think anybody has said, ‘Well, she’s awfully quiet, guess I’ll unfollow.’ It’s fairly easy to do when you’re freelancing, because you try to fuck off as much as possible, and Twitter is a great way to waste huge chunks of time. But I just started working for a television show, and it’s time consuming, and I try to save my best stuff for work.
“Really, these days, I only tweet if I think of something funny, rather than like, sitting around, trying to come up with a good joke, which doesn’t tend to work anyway.”
But being a noteworthy writer on the upper-echelon of Twitter isn’t all fun and games. Remember, Twitter is on the Internet, so by rule of thumb, there are a disproportionate amount of creepy dudes. Some of them are even worse than frustrated tweeters and writers, jealous of her success (which, trust me, is a very vindictive, angry segment of society).
“I had what might be considered a stalker. I had kind of a weird thing happening where I’d be doing a show someplace and the event organizers would want me to tweet about it, but then I had one or two people who I wasn’t entirely confident didn’t want to murder me or something. I have a guy who I’ve had to block on Twitter and Facebook and Gmail because he consistently writes me angry, weird shit,” she says.
Hopefully scary incidents like that stay in the past because things seem to be going very well. She is currently writing for the upcoming Dennis Leary-produced comedy series on the USA Network, Sirens, and writing a book which she says is about “unrequited love.” In the meantime, follow her on Twitter and check out her website, julieannesmolinski.com.
Talk to your kids about drugs. Talk to your stepdads about jazz. Like, just generally be polite and ask people about their interests.