“We don’t want to be disconnected,” Fossum said. “The lights are glowing in your laps. You want to know what’s going on right now. You demand it.”
That demand, plus a desire to share an experience only a handful of people get, is why Fossum and Garan have been tweeting about their journeys in space for about four years now.
“When Mike and I flew together in 2008 and I looked out the window for the first time, it was frustrating to me,” Garan said. “I saw this amazing sight that I couldn’t really describe, I couldn’t really share.”
Since then, they’ve shared their stories and sights to huge audiences. Garan’s first tweet from space, a photo of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, was retweeted by the White House and by celebrities and got 126,000 views in a week. And though NASA may have a leg up on earthbound communicators in terms of inspiring awe, a good number of the astronauts’ tips for tweeting could come in handy for anyone.
1. Re-create the emotion.
“We’re always looking for creative ways to tell the story,” Garan said. “I saw this as a way that I could bring people on, not just as spectators, but as crew members.”