A Peek Inside Linda Holmes' Digital Life

Jan 17, 2013

This month we spoke with Linda Holmes. Linda Holmes writes and edits NPR’s entertainment and pop-culture blog, Monkey See.


Linda Holmes
Credit Mito Habe-Evans

Three daily must-reads: 
The Atlantic Wire 
Go Fug Yourself

Three people you follow regularly: 
I'm not sure how to answer this, because I follow (at the moment) 274 people, all of them "regularly," as in daily -- I don't have lists where I check some people every day and some people less regularly. With that said, three people whose feeds I'm particularly attentive to at the moment would be Emily Nussbaum, TV critic at The New Yorker whose opinions on television I find particularly interesting and thoughtful (@emilynussbaum); Josh Gondelman, a comedian who is currently my Most Reliably Funny Twitter Person (@joshgondelman); and Will Sloan, who used to be one of our interns and has a beautifully bent sense of humor and a really nifty retro-cool cultural sensibility (@WillSloanEsq).  

Three places you go online despite your better judgment: 
I have to assume that if I'm doing it, it's not THAT much against my better judgment, but I probably would have the most trouble explaining my affection for the Dear Prudence advice column on Slate, any recap of any episode of any Real Housewives incarnation, and various unusual Tumblrs. If I told you, it wouldn't be a surprise when you sneak up on me.

 Three accounts you'd pay to follow on Twitter 
@gavinpurcell, a producer on Jimmy Fallon's show who says almost exclusively things I think are interesting or funny.

@ghweldon, my friend and Pop Culture Happy Hour co-panelist, who does weird experimental storytelling on Twitter that I adore.

@neiltyson, who is probably the smartest human I've ever talked to in person.

Three guilty pleasures online: 
This seems kind of like Against My Better Judgment, but I'll answer it this way: Three places that many other people would expect me to feel guilty about that I don't feel guilty about at all because they're so well done are Smart Bitches Trashy Books, a terrific site about romance novels; Reality Blurred, the best online source about reality television; and the utterly frivolous but very funny Catalog Living.

First thing you check in the morning/last thing you check at night:
In both cases, Twitter.

Favorite news consumption time saver:
Google Reader.

Go-to local news source:
WAMU or DCist.

Your most used mobile reporting tool or app:
I don't primarily do reporting on the go, but when I do, it's Twitter, to be honest.

Something you wished people would ask you on these types of lists:
"I am a publicist. Should I follow up my e-mail pitch to you with repeated phone calls?" The answer to this question is "No."

Words of wisdom for stations as they go forward with their digital efforts:
What works well in digital is great, engaging content, but it does have marvelous opportunities to have fun that are harder in other formats. Be fun on Twitter; be fun on Tumblr. But people want substance, too, so be informative. The attention span may seem shorter -- and maybe sometimes it is shorter -- but people really will read and pass along great things, so don't try to create Digital Stuff. Just create Great Stuff that's in a digital format.