Ah bliss…the skies over Perth are fully cloud-covered, and after scorching temperatures up in the 40s Celsius the garden is green and wet, and the city-dwellers breathe a collective sigh. The outer world is tranquil, and remarkably soft for February in Western Australia. The inner world? No, I don’t mean mine, I mean the one inside the trusty laptop that has become so merged with my inner world that the borders have well and truly blurred. Not so tranquil – and not so long ago it scared the heck out of me.
For a former technophobe it’s quite startling to be writing blog posts, socializing on facebook, setting up an author page, chatting on author forums, taking skype master classes, learning the ins and outs of an online manuscript system, and dipping a first tentative toe into twitter. Three years ago I was just making the shift from pen and paper to tapping with two fingers on a keyboard (I kid you not) and had just opened my first email account! One year ago, after persistent nudging from writing pals in the crit group I belong to (which is awesome, and can be found at http://egoboo-wa.blogspot.com/) I took the plunge and landed on facebook, hardly imagining that I would soon be doing everything there from ooohing and aaahing over photos of my friends’ newest puppies to taking part in synchronized global meditations to meeting the man of my dreams and painting a stream of ‘love notes’ across our public Walls. So much for being a recluse!
Step Two of this wild adventure is to breathe, step back, and remember to write and edit (and edit)…not posts, but novels. To keep it all in balance (as I look down the torrent of twitter and gulp). To see them as friends, not competitors and access the perfect moment for each one of them. Am I there yet? Maybe not quite. And reading the post at this link http://mashable.com/2012/02/02/social-media-writers/reminded me both of what I want, and what I don’t want. The last sentence of Point 10 in this handy list for writers is one to keep in the front of my mind. So…right now, I’m going to take a walk out the back door, stand in the sprinkling rain and relish the crisp scent of wet eucalypts (then post a photo of it to facebook).