The internet has changed my life. In a word, it has revolutionized it. The World Wide Web has turned my life around and made me (almost) believe in magic again.
Internet access has taken me out of my former isolated world of word processor, and before that, ye gods! the lowly typewriter, and given me (with a touch of a keystroke and a high speed internet connection) the world at my fingertips.
I write plays and short stories, and as any writer can tell you, it’s a lonely profession.
I love it, or I wouldn’t be doing it (few of us are getting rich, here) but it has a downside. Solitude. Self-imposed exile.
Thanks to the internet. I have joined writers clubs, contacted agent, downloaded magazine addresses, viewed publishing opportunities,perused bulletin boards, participated in chat rooms discussions, and signed up for specialized listservs.
With my high-speed modem, I can communicate with people all over the world and go on virtual tours to museums and tourist attractions. When I do my research, I can access huge amount of information (a writer’s lifeblood) and in a matter of minutes, have it at my fingertips information that in days gone by, would have taken be hours to find.
Inside this electronic global village, I can write short stories, articles and poems and see them posted inside of a week. (I once waited a year to see a story of mine appear in a print magazine. Now, I can view my work in a couple of days.)
Call it instant gratification if you will, but it sure beats the devil out of feeling like I’ve aged a decade as I wait for a story to see the light of day.
(It’s not uncommon to have a literary story accepted for publication in the spring and have it come out in time for Christmas.)
I’ve had editors contact me about publishing monologues of my plays (that they’ve seen online) and artistic directors who ask for permission to stage a play that I’d written years ago.
Even rejections are kinder on the internet. That’s probably because they’re quick and relatively painless. I may get an occasional, “Sorry we can’t use your story” in my e-mail, but it doesn’t have the sting of an envelope I have to tear open, take out paper I have to unfold to read, and if there is a scrawled comment on the rejection slip, it from an editor who has gone to the same school of writing as my doctor.
I smile over the hue and cry about the internet being impersonal. Puh—leeze! Impersonal, is a postal carrier who has nothing to say unless my dog happens to meet him on his appointed rounds. Impersonal is an editor’s assistant who can’t recall the manuscript I submitted ten months ago, let alone what it was about.
I’m asked to resubmit, and when I do that editor will be gone (Editors have the shelf life of a Mayfly) and my brilliant opus will have aged another six months as I wait to hear of its fate from a new hire.
In spite of the World Wide Web and all its drawbacks, someone would be hard pressed to convince me that the bad side of internet outweighs the benefits.
I think Rubert Murdoch said it all when he opined: “The internet has been the most fundamental change during my lifetime and for hundreds of years.” Amen to that.