Endowed in perpetuity by the Glenna Luschei Fund for Excellence

Life and Literature: On Snap Poetry, #InstaFiction, Creative Distractions, and Prairie Schooner's New Social Media Efforts

by Cameron Steele

I am an unabashed proponent of #instapoetry. There are few distractions I love more than taking pictures with my iPhone, sifting through Instagram filters, and forcing myself to quickly come up with short poems to accompany the posts.

Of course, this #instapoet habit of mine is mostly a way to take a time out from the more hardcore poetry writing and increasingly stressful life as a grad student and freelance reporter. But it’s also, I think, more than that: Combining Instagram fun and poetry has also become a way to share my love of language, to force myself through writer’s block, and – above all – to connect through social media to other writers and poets.

Others here at the Prairie Schooner share my love of using social media to connect. That’s why our amazing managing editor Ashley Strosnider, Snaptastic web editor Paul Clark and everyone else at the Schooner’s UNL headquarters are excited to announce the literary journal’s new presence on Instagram and Snapchat. We want to increase our social media presence. We want to have fun and show that creative writing doesn’t always have to be serious.

Most importantly, we want to have more creative interactions with you – our readers, our contributors, our social media followers, our friends.

We want to know what you’re writing, what’s on your mind, and we want you to share that with us on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter and the Prairie Schooner blog.  In return, we’re going to give you behind-the-scenes peeks into life at the Prairie Schooner headquarters.

We’ll tell the stories of what it’s like to put together a literary journal that’s been around for almost 90 years. We’ll post photos to Instagram, invite you to write insta captions for us during frequent contests advertised on Facebook, ask the poets we find lurking around campus to participate in our slam poetry on Snapchat. (And of course we want you to send us videos of your own Snap Poetry too!)

Each month, we’re going to organize our social media efforts around a new theme or topic. If you’ve got suggestions, we’d love to hear from you. This month, our theme is Distraction. We thought we’d piggyback off National Novel Writing Month – one of the best ways as writers we know to distract ourselves from the busyness of the holiday season and looming fall deadlines.

Are you participating in #NaNoWrimo? How does writing help distract you from life’s less exciting responsibilities? Or what do you do when you need a distraction from the writing itself? Tell us about it.

Follow us on Instagram: @Prairie_Schooner
Send us snaps on Snapchat: @PrairieSchooner
Follow us on Twitter: @TheSchooner
Keep up-to-date with our Prairie Schooner Facebook Page
Finally, check us out on Ello