Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Where Virtual Meets Reality

A big part of my virtual world is about to mesh with my other world. The world where my forty-plus mom-body hangs out and cooks dinner and folds clothes, and teaches college students to paint, specifically. Yeah, for lack of a better word, the real one.

But both terms, real and virtual, in describing these two distinct worlds, seem like such a slight to what happens for me in the blogosphere. We laugh, we cry over each other's posts. We encourage each other. We seek (and gain) understanding. Sometimes we offer advice. (I probably give too much). We share funny stories and deep spiritual experiences. We come to know a side of each other that the rest of the world probably misses. Completely. I wonder, what could possibly be more real than these "virtual" friendships I have built up over the past year? I know these women. I often pray for them. I love them.

Several of my witty and wonderful blogging buddies will be in town for a writers conference this week. (I'm really flattered that so many of my readers are professional writers.) And I will get to meet them in person. In some ways I'm beyond excited. Yet at the same time, my idiosyncratic insecurities set in: (will they find my in-person quirkiness annoying? will it matter that I'm not thin or rich or beautiful or...) and I hope they will recall this post. But truly, those insecurites belong to another, worldlier world. They are non-issues in the blogosphere.

The fun starts tomorrow. And it's an all-star line-up. Some of them are my heroes. I'm opening my doors to them, breaking bread with them, inviting them into my regular life. (I might even vacuum before they come.) But in some ways I doubt we'll be any more bonded by meeting in person than we already are by befriending one another in the blogosphere. These virtual strangers are already my very real friends.



p.s. If you are interested in meeting Heidi Ashworth and hearing her talk about her novel, Miss Delacourt Speaks Her Mind, at my book group on Saturday night, email me (or leave a comment) and I'll email you the time and the address to chez charrette.

15 comments:

Kristina P. said...

I've heard about your book club and it should be awesome! I'm meeting Heidi earlier in the day.

LexiconLuvr said...

I'm so excited for this weekend! I understand (and feel) all those same worries and doubts but as for where you're concerned, you have NOTHING to worry about. I'm CERTAIN that you'll be overwhelmed with the sheer amount of people who will get to adore you in the flesh. =]

Melanie J said...

See you tomorrow! Yay!

LisAway said...

That's so true! How strange to see the person behind the blog, but yet, you already know each other. It's the complete opposite of most relationships where all your first impressions are based on appearance and the way someone carries their self etc. You guys already know each other inside, but now you'll get the full picture. I hope (and I'm sure!) you'll have a fantastic time. And I can't tell you how I wish I could be there!!!

Mrs4444 said...

Your humility is charming. But really, this post is one we can all relate to, certainly. Good thing nobody wants to come to Wisconsin :)

Heidi Ashworth said...

There is a cure for the glasses. C-O-N-T-A-C-T-S. (shhhh, they're my guilty secret!) hee hee. YOU are 100 kinds of sweet and wonderful! You'll be the central clearing house for novelist bloggists! How fun! I don't get to give you a big fat hug until Saturday but I can't wait!

Debbie said...

I will be here being absolutely green with envy at you all being together!

Kazzy said...

It is strange to think about a virtual identity being smashed to smithereens. Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Kimberly said...

Very real indeed!

You're even more lovely in person, and prior to meeting you I would not have believed that possible!

Eowyn said...

Quite frankly, I can't get enough of you in real life, so I'm sure every one else will love you!

Last night was fabulous, as usual. I hope you made waffles this morning!

Erin said...

I really, really wish I lived closer to SLC/Provo so I could have been to all of these fun activities. I am sure I really missed out!

Thank you for your kind comment. I'm slightly flabbergasted that people would be talking about me behind my back in a nice way, but I appreciate knowing!

And yes, you are a very good writer. And I'm sure if you have any quirks, they are absolutely delightful :)

val of the south said...

It was so fun to meet you today! And I can't wait until someone asks me how I like Utah so I can put your fabulous phrase to use...better than I thought I would! Thanks!!

We missed you guys at lunch!

An Ordinary Mom said...

I wish I could be there! I can't wait to hear how these worlds collided ... I am sure it was bliss!

Youngblood4ever said...

You are fabulous! Great to meet you yesterday!

Meg said...

hey!! i heard about this through Write Stuff! all of you guys getting together is awesome ;) i'm new to the blogging world but I really like it! it's like a journal... that you publish!

anyways keep up the good work! :)