This Sunday I will be speaking on a panel at the Sydney Jewish Writers Festival about ‘Going Online’. It is a topic very close to my heart, as I spend half my life on the computer, which, considering another third of my life is spent asleep, is a very high percentage indeed.
Being so knowledgeable about the online world, I am extremely comfortable discussing it. This makes a nice change for me from the discussion of most topics, when I really just make things up to try to look wise. Luckily, I’m pretty good at bluffing, and most of my contributions can be mistaken for genuinely insightful contributions to the discussion, if cleverly combined with a raised eyebrow and a look of pensive intelligence. I am also quite skilled at the knowing nod, which I apply when I have absolutely no idea what other people are talking about, but wish to look like I do.
Happily, I can speak about Going Online without needing to nod knowingly (though of course I am delighted to do so if one of my fellow panelists makes an excellent point, or says something extremely obscure that I don’t understand). I am familiar with the online world. It is my home. I love it. In fact, sometimes I fear I love the online world more than the real world, so warm and welcoming it is to me.
My online life consists of my blog, Twitter, and guest posting on other blogs. And the experience is always incredibly positive.
All the comments left by readers on posts I have written are supportive and complimentary, and if they are not, I just delete them. All the people I meet on Twitter are hilarious and have interesting things to say, and if not, I just block them from my account. This is very different to the real world, in which I get negative feedback fairly regularly (particularly from my three young children) and meet people who say things like ‘That’ll be $17.50’, and ‘Can you make sure you sign your daughter’s homework diary every day’.
No wonder I spend so much time with my head in cyberspace. It’s nice here. And I know what I’m doing. All I have to do is write about myself and my life, which fortunately requires very little research, because I detest research. What’s more, for the first time in my life, I feel like an expert in my field. After years in other professions in which I had to pretend to be competent (helped greatly by the donning of a business suit and high heels) I actually am competent. It’s quite exciting, really.
So come and see me talk about my work. I’ll dazzle you with my knowledge about myself, my blog and my views on my life. Just for godsake don’t throw any questions at me about politics, or history, or philosophy, or the arts.
Not unless you want to get the knowing nod.