Having a month off social media was wonderful, I’d highly recommend it. I was able to work on many different projects without distraction (and without comparing myself to others so much). Despite thesis and job-searching stress, my mind felt calmer, and I was able to concentrate for longer stretches. Most of all, as I’d intended, I was able to have a good think about the role social media plays in my life (and my career). And I’ve decided that participating in social media is beneficial to me, but it’s not essential. I really enjoy the interactions I have with friends and like-minded people through blogging, Facebook, Twitter etc.—I certainly missed the status updates of specific people—but I can also live a perfectly happy, fulfilled life without being constantly connected.
LiteraryMinded still plays a role in my career, which is wonderful, but I’ve realised that I’ve published and presented enough on- and off-line that even if I curtail my social media use, I won’t be missing out on any opportunities. So I’ll be writing just as much, but across the board: pieces online and for print media, and much longer pieces that will surface at some point in time.
The thesis is… getting there. And I’ve been very busy besides. You may have seen my piece in Crikey about David Bowie’s new song (which I am intensely excited about). I’ve also interviewed Graeme Simsion, author of the charming romantic comedy The Rosie Project, for The Big Issue, that’ll be out next Friday (8 Feb). You can also catch Graeme Simsion and I in conversation at Readings in Carlton next Thursday (7 Feb) at 5:30.
This year I’m running the Dog’s Tales storytelling events at Dog’s Bar in St Kilda! The first one is this coming Monday (4 Feb), featuring Meg Mundell and David Sornig. It’ll run monthly from then on (all the details are here). Come along, have a drink, and listen to some great writers. There’s also a short open mic slot at each event, and you must register your interest in advance. You can do that by emailing me: literaryminded at gmail dot com.
The programs are out for the Perth Writers Festival, and the Bellingen Readers and Writers Festival. I’m chairing events at each of these lovely festivals, and I’ll also be giving a blogging workshop on the Sunday (24 Feb) in Perth.
I’ll be teaching a two-day course on blogging and social media for beginners at the NSW Writers’ Centre in April. It was great fun last year, and some wonderful blogs came out of it. Doing it over two days gives the students time to play around during the course and ask me lots of questions, which really works.
Phew! I’ve been saving that all up. I hope you’ve all had a nice, relaxing and productive month. See you when I see you.