I have a new writing gig. It’s voluntary, but is rather important because of what it is and where it reaches. I really don’t give a flying fuck about getting paid for a lot of what I do (as we have discussed at length) and part of me would be happy to do this forever. However, what this means for the grown up bit of my brain is a new communication platform to get the head around. For my current Writing and Podcast gigs I use Slack, which is a marvel for someone on GMT who’s basically working to US timezones, or who often does stuff outside of ‘normal’ office hours. Yesterday I was introduced to Discord, which appears to use Slack’s functionally with voice comms on top. However, there’s a problem which has nothing to do with the people I’m working with and pretty much everything to do with me.
I find these platforms disconnect me terribly from the job they’re supposed to do.
Twitter’s a real-time chat conversation I started, and therefore I feel more comfortable in that space. I am not new to the territory, and can at least make a lame pudding-based gag without thinking everybody is staring at me. When you come into a large, established group of people who clearly know each other well? How do you deal with this as a grown up without running away screaming? I tend to stick close to the people I know, and only get involved in conversations when a) its necessary and b) when I have a decent, universal gag. Otherwise, I am the Introvert in the room. Actually, that’s what I am regardless, and maybe I ought to stop trying to live up to everybody else’s expectations and just settle with my own level. Then I remember I’m supposed to be working on change, and it all gets a bit difficult to cope with.
Except, and this is also the case with Twitter like it or not, you still have the disconnect to a point, unless you break the surface of the platform and actually reach out to the people who you communicate with. And therefore, yesterday, an idea was born. I’m going to reach out to people through a common interest, and see where it takes me. Obviously I’ll need to trust the people concerned, and as a result I’ll be communicating with a select group of Twitter ‘friends’ with whom I’ve already made a connection. However, this is a chance to create summat special and unique for a lot of people and to share writing with people in a manner in which was the case for all those years before the Internet happened: letters. It also by definition is a means to reach out to the World, which I need to do far more than currently happens.
Needless to say, Watch this Space.