Sunday, February 22, 2009

diving in . . .

I've never been a jump-in-the-pool-all-at-once kind of person - I've got to do it gradually. It's not like I don't know how to swim; I like swimming. I just have to ease my way in slowly.

The internet community has been that way for me, too. I found blogs by a happy accident: browsing the website of one of those baby magazines you get a ton of when you're pregnant. I started knitting at about the same time, so it was natural enough to dip a toe into the water and start regularly reading a few favorite blogs. I never thought I'd have one myself, though.

And I didn't, not until about a year after I'd started reading them. I took that next step into the pool almost accidentally, too. I was at the library, looking at the "newly arrived" books shelf. (There's almost always something good there.) There was a "Blogger for Dummies"-type book and I grabbed it. I still thought I was just going to peruse it, but that didn't last long. That was when I started this blog.

I was happy enough to splash around ankle-deep, but, well, Ravelry came around. And you can't join Ravelry without joining flickr, of course. Groups on Ravelry were a new feature when I got my invite, and so I started joining and reading and posting in them, too.

After Ravelry came Etsy. I knew starting up a shop there, in anything approaching a serious way, would be a big commitment, a big step into the pool. And it is. There are quite literally thousands of sellers there, so it quickly became obvious that I needed to do something if I wanted anybody at all to see my shop. The collective wisdom of the Etsy forums (fora?), as well as the Etsy Ravelry group, told me that the way to go is to put myself out there on as many social networking-type sites as I can find. To which my first response was: HELLS NO. That' s way too much. But in the end, I got all the way in.

So here I am. I'm on Ravelry. I'm on flickr. I've got two shops, one on Etsy and one on the smaller 1000markets site. And now I'm on Twitter and Facebook, too. I know what a tweet, a photostream, and a phantom disagreer are. I have a blogiversary and I celebrated the last one by sending yarn to Texas. I use words like omg because, really, there is nothing else that better expresses the sentiment. (I have yet to use LOL or any of its variants, though, and I don't plan to.) I have most definitely dived all the way into the pool.

In fact, part of me wonders if I'm in over my head. That was first worry about the whole social networking thing - that I really wouldn't have the time. O Internets, how I underestimated you! Turns out SO MUCH of this stuff can be all linked up. Ravelry uses the photos from flickr. Everytime I post something on Twitter, it updates my Facebook status. I was even able to set it up so that if I post to the blog, a link shows up on Twitter (and therefore, on Facebook). (I could do that for the Etsy shop too, so that it shows up anytime I list something new or renew something. I'm trying to do that at least once a day, though, so it would get really spammy.)

And I really didn't anticipate how much fun it would be. I've been on Facebook all of three days and I've already found tons of people I haven't thought about in years. I'm far too shy to send a friend request to anybody I haven't at least talked to sort of recently, which I think is a whole new level of pathetic, but it's still super fun.

So - come find me! Anywhere and everywhere!