Monday, April 28, 2008

Making Friends in Cyberspace

We live in such an electrnic age that we can do almost everything in our lifes-shop for clothes, food, books, make phone calls around the world, send messages without going to the post office and conduct and entire business without every leaving our homes. Or our computers! Think about it. At your computer you are connected to hundreds of people you never see who over time become closer than most people you know.

Wjhen my first book was published and I began my life according to Yahoo, I realized that out there on the loops I was meeting poeple from all over the world. Talking to them. Exhanging everything from ideas to recipes. The first time a reader in Hong Kong won an ebook from me in a contest, I thought, Wow! Hong Kong! I have editors in Australia, England, and the United States, and readers from, at last county, thirty three different countries.

And as I've lived in the Yahoo world, I've made friends who I've grown closer to with each year. We share out hopes, our dreams, or disappointments and our successes. We discuss our personal lives, jokes about the crises we all face, and in general become one extended family. All without seeing each other.

Two weeks ago I went to the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention in Pittsburgh and finally had the opportunity to meet many of them. What a wonderful, wonderful bunch of people. And we knew each other as if we'd been together for ages. My roommate was great-thank you Cindy Spencer Pape for being the terrific person you are-and all the rest of you-Anny (and the house hunk), Carol, Michele, Chrtistine, Claire, Lacey, Keanar, Kelly-I know I missed someone but please forgive me and chalk it up to my aging brain. All of you are wonderful and being with you was such a joy.

Now when I read my emails and the messages on the loops, I can put a face to the name. I hope you all come back next year when it's in Orlando, and those whomdidn;t get there this year, put it on your calendars. It's a wonderfl way to blend the syber-and real worlds together, and bask in the warmth iof friendshiops that have grown over time.

You rock, ladies.

10 comments:

Ruth said...

Sometimes you find that those of us on here listen better to each other than our "real life" friends and family do.We are each of us in our own way the same yet different enough to be complimentary and honest about who we are.

Lynn LaFleur said...

Finally meeting someone who you've "known" via email groups is so neat. I met a couple of authors at RT for the first time, and we've been corresponding for years. I love putting faces to names.

Lynn

Anny Cook said...

Howdy, Judith! It was so lovely meeting you. Best wishes with everything you're working on.

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

And she didn't beging to mention how wonderful Judith herself is in person. It was truly a delight to get to hug her in person.

Charlene Leatherman said...

Wonderfully said, Judith. Friends found in the Yahoo world are great friends to find and then to meet. I look forward to meeting you face to face someday.

Regina Carlysle said...

Ah, I soooo regret that I couldn't join the group this year and look forward to having those moments that Judith enjoyed so much. In the meantime, I'll give my best friends CYBER HUGS! Next year at RT...finally!

Hugs!

Bronwyn's Blog said...

I can't wait to see you again next year, Judith. Cindy's right - you give the best hugs - reall life *and* cyber!

Jodi said...

One of these year's I'll get to a convention to meet my many cyberfriends. Until then, I am just thankful for my computer and internet!

orelukjp0 said...

I am new to talking to people via the internet but I have found many wonderful friends in the last several months. The best of these are authors themselves who find time in their busy schedules to not only take care of their families and write the books we love to read but also talk to us, their readers. Thank you for taking time to respond to us and showing that you do care about your readers.

Anita Birt said...

You all had such a wonderful time meeeting and greeting at RT, I feel like the little orphan of the storm beating at the door, "Let me in." What a treat for all of you. You shared a lot of fun with the rest of us who couldn't make it. Is the RT convention more helpful to writers than RWA? I attended 5 RWA conferences and met agents and editors,sent of requested partials, to no avail. I sometimes wonder why should we bother sending off partials when the answer is usually - No thanks.

Loved your post.