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Did you know that there’s somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 million to 200 million blogs today? So why in heaven’s name would I want to become blogger No. gazillion-and-one?

Alas Zerbino blogging away in Second LifeGood question–and one a writer/blogger friend asked of other bloggers. She invited us each to write a post on own own blog about how we started blogging, sildenafil information pills and then share our posts on her blog. So here’s my story . . .

Writers today “must write a blog,” the experts say–especially if they have published or want to publish books. I agree that advice makes sense in this Internet Age, but I put off starting a blog for a variety of reasons: too busy, nothing to say, too public, too blah, blah, blah… And so the years passed.

Early this year, quite by accident (as I reported in my first post to this blog), I stumbled into a writer’s wonderland in the virtual world of Second Life. None of my writer friends knew anything about Second Life, though it was filled with all kinds of opportunities for them. “Self,” I told myself, “you’ve got to get the word out to writers everywhere.”

So I wrote up a query for an article on writing resources in Second Life, and sent it off to The Writer magazine, which I consider the premier writers’ periodical in the English-speaking world. The editors there contemplated the query for more than two months before finally deciding it didn’t quite fit their editorial needs. Now, maybe they were just being polite, but in retrospect, I agree; it wasn’t the type of article they publish.

So the next step was to pick another writers’ magazine to send the query to. But before I did that, an idea struck me like . . . well, not like lightning, but definitely with more finesse than the Bluebird of Happiness‘s droppings! The idea: write a blog about writing and Second Life!

It was one of those “kill two birds with one stone” concepts (sorry, Bluebird of Happiness): I could say everything I wanted to say about Second Life with no editor (other than myself) hacking and slicing words and sentences, AND, I’d finally get that necessary-for-a-writer blog a-goin’!

Fortunately, I happened to be in the middle of a great class on blogging given by blogger Teddy Gross (in Second Life, of course!), so with his guidance (or perhaps “pushing” is a better word, Teddy?!!?) and the support of fellow class members H.R. Starr and Rich Ocheis. I created the WRITERS IN THE (virtual) SKY blog!

Whether my blog has any greater impact than a drop of water falling into the ocean, I don’t know. But it’s been great fun, and I’ve met a lot of wonderful people in the process–including Sharon Hurley Hall, whose “Blogging Start Group Writing Project” on her blog was the impetus for this post.

That’s my story of my blogging start . . . and, as the cliche goes, I’m sticking to it!
Did you know that there’s somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 million to 200 million blogs today? So why in heaven’s name would I want to become blogger No. gazillion-and-one?

Alas Zerbino blogging away in Second LifeGood question—and one a writer/blogger friend asked of other bloggers. She invited us each to write a post on own own blog about how we started blogging, capsule and then share our posts on her blog. So here’s my story . . .

Writers today “must write a blog, ambulance ” the experts say—especially if they have published or want to publish books. I agree that advice makes sense in this Internet Age, but I put off starting a blog for a variety of reasons: too busy, nothing to say, too public, too blah, blah, blah… And so the years passed.

Early this year, quite by accident (as I reported in my first post to this blog), I stumbled into a writer’s wonderland in the virtual world of Second Life. None of my writer friends knew anything about Second Life, though it was filled with all kinds of opportunities for them. “Self,” I told myself, “you’ve got to get the word out to writers everywhere.”

So I wrote up a query for an article on writing resources in Second Life, and sent it off to The Writer magazine, which I consider the premier writers’ periodical in the English-speaking world. The editors there contemplated the query for more than two months before finally deciding it didn’t quite fit their editorial needs. Now, maybe they were just being polite, but in retrospect, I agree; it wasn’t the type of article they publish.

So the next step was to pick another writers’ magazine to send the query to. But before I did that, an idea struck me like . . . well, not like lightning, but definitely with more finesse than the Bluebird of Happiness‘s droppings! The idea: write a blog about writing and Second Life!

It was one of those “kill two birds with one stone” concepts (sorry, Bluebird of Happiness): I could say everything I wanted to say about Second Life with no editor (other than myself) hacking and slicing words and sentences, AND, I’d finally get that necessary-for-a-writer blog a-goin’!

Fortunately, I happened to be in the middle of a great class on blogging given by blogger Teddy Gross (in Second Life, of course!), so with his guidance (or perhaps “pushing” is a better word, Teddy?!!?) and the support of fellow class members H.R. Starr and Rich Ocheis. I created the WRITERS IN THE (virtual) SKY blog!

Whether my blog has any greater impact than a drop of water falling into the ocean, I don’t know. But it’s been great fun, and I’ve met a lot of wonderful people in the process–including Sharon Hurley Hall, whose “Blogging Start Group Writing Project” on her blog was the impetus for this post.

That’s my story of my blogging start . . . and, as the cliche goes, I’m sticking to it!
If you’re a writer of any kind or genre—fiction, site poetry, hair journalism, medications creative nonfiction, etc.—you’ll be happy to hear about the many potential markets for your work in Second Life —way too many to list in a single article, in fact!

In this post, I focus on a periodical market that’s distinctively Second Life and the subject of my last post: magazines you can read like a book while in this 3D virtual world. In that post, I talked about how to read an inworld book.

THiNC printing process

Above, the THiNC headquarters in Second Life displays the two components involved in “printing” a book: a laid-out book and a printing press. Below, another popular printing press is the IntelliBook Factory. This press uses a similar process, but automates a few more of the steps.

Book Factory pressBut how do these books get “published”? Simple: inworld books and magazines (i.e., those manufactured like a book you read virtually) are “printed” on “printing presses” invented by the Gutenbergs of Second Life.

Strange, you may be thinking, given the mass, weight, and size of a first-life press. But not really! I grew up in a print shop (my parents published the local newspaper and did job printing at their shop). I played and worked amidst the letterpresses, Linotype machines, and later, offset presses. When I learned about the SL printing process, it actually reminded me a lot of the presses I grew up with (minus the ink-blackened hands, burnt fingers from hot type, and overpowering chemical smells, of course!)

Most inworld magazines and books I’ve seen in Second Life were printed on one of two presses: the THiNC Printing Press or the IntelliBook Factory. The steps for printing on the THiNC press are amazingly similar to the old letterpress operation. It’s only the method each step uses that’s so different:

Step: THiNC Printing Press: Letterpress:
Set the type and graphics using: computer software metal movable type
Lay out each page via: graphics software placing metal type into a wooden forme
Make a mock-up of the book by: dragging the electronic files into the 3D master book creating a papier mache mold of each page’s forme
Transfer the mock-up to the press by: “rezzing” the master book and placing it on the press clamping the papier mache mold onto the letterpress (one page at a time)
Activate the press and print by: right-clicking your mouse on the press pushing levers and buttons that move the big rollers (while standing clear of moving parts!!

So how “real” are these magazines? As real as the cold, hard cash they usually pay contributors! Here’s a quick look at the inworld magazines I’ve encountered in Second Life, most of which do pay their writers!

Literary Journals

Among my favorite are a couple of awesome literary journals:

AnonLiterary Magazine:

According to their call for submissions, AnonLiterary is a monthly publication that aims:

  • “To celebrate freedom of speech, freedom of anonymity, and the best writing from residents of Second Life
  • “To celebrate our freedom of anonymity in Second Life
  • “To celebrate the best fiction, poetry, essays and plays written by the residents of Second Life”

AnonLiterary Magazine“Material we are interested in publishing includes short fiction, poetry, essays, plays, commentary, experimental forms, and whatever you dream up that we like. Each month will also include a centerfold of the finest erotica SL writers have to offer.”

AnonLiterary also pays for published work. “We pay our writers L$500 a page at this time (we know, it isn’t much, we just want you to know that you are indeed highly valued!). We want new stuff that hasn’t been published before, with rights to publish in-world and online, exclusively for a month.”

sLiterary Magazine:

sLiterary MagazinesLiterary Magazine is another highly regarded literary journal, “a biannual magazine that publishes tasteful and highly selective fictional stories relating to the metaverse of Second Life.”

sLiterary is also paying market, advertising these rates: “For prose, expect payment from L$1 – L$10/word, depending on length and quality. Poetry, from L$100 and up.”

General Interest Magazines

Several other excellent magazines publish a variety of nonfiction articles on many facets of Second Life. Some also publish a small amount of fiction and poetry in each issue. The ones I’ve discovered include:

  • 1st Touch, a quarterly periodical that publishes freelance articles offering “inspiring, original work focused on touching our readers through their own experiences with our content.” To see a copy of 1st Touch, you’ll need to pick it up inworld. 1st Touch has a website, but the magazine is not available online (at least not yet).
  • The Best of SL, a monthly publication “which celebrates and honors those who have excelled in ANY field in Second Life.” Payment for writers is unknown, and their website is still in development. To view a copy of the magazine, you’ll need to go inworld.
  • 1st Touch Magazine The Best of SL Magazine
  • FreeLife Magazine, a twice-monthly general interest publication, is actively looking for “authors, journalists, photographers, and Second Life experts in News, Business, Fashion, Music and Entertainment to write for the magazine.” FreeLife’s website calls it “the new virtual magazine born in and for the most popular metaworld: Second Life. FreeLife is entirely edited by its inhabitants who tell juicy stories about what happens in their second life: news, events, protagonists and much more.” You can view back issues of FreeLife online.

Reveal Magazine

  • Reveal Magazine is a monthly publication of “Stories, News, and Opinions About the Virtual 3D World of Second Life.” Although no payment information is available, it’s a great outlet for publication credits, at least. “Stories, poems, photography, art, fashion, role-play, music, and events are a few of our subjects,” according to the magazine. Reveal Magazine provides an online version of each issue, as well as an inworld one.

Other Inworld Publications

Because Second Life”printing” allows for gorgeous, slick magazines, many of the inworld periodicals focus on style and design. Writers who are interested in freelance or staff writing jobs in Second Life should also take a look at these:

  • inV—the men’s guide to fashion, music, and living in Second Life, available in dispensers throughout Second Life
  • Second Style
  • Runway

The primary rule is the same in both the virtual and real world: Be sure you check submission guidelines and read an issue or two before submitting your work! Some magazines post guidelines on their websites; others in their publications.

Second Life is massive, so I’m assuming there are other inworld publications I know nothing about! Also, SL reflects first life: magazines appear and disappear from the scene on a fairly regular basis. So I’m asking you to let me know if you find other “inworld” magazines and journals, or if you learn any of the ones listed are no longer being published! Please post a comment with that information!

In upcoming posts, I’ll describe other types of SL writing markets, including website-based periodicals, contests, and book publication, so stayed tuned! And if you hear of one you want to know more about, let me know—post a comment here!

For a writer, patient books are as important as oxygen, this site so why spend time in a virtual world where I can’t pick up a good book, viagra 100mg flip its pages, lie on the beach reading?

Finally got a book to openThose were some of my thoughts as I stumbled through the first few days as a Second Life newbie. Right away, I got it that writing workshops and open-mic readings are possible. But without books, this 3D universe couldn’t have much else to offer a writer.

Was I ever wrong!! Oh me of little faith!

The creative souls that inhabit the metaverse solved that problem long ago by inventing a “printing press” that generates books and magazines (including literary journals) of all sorts. Not only can you read a book in Second Life, you can submit a manuscript for publication by an inworld press or publish your own book of poetry, short stories, a novel, nonfiction, etc., etc.

In future posts, I will talk about the many publishing opportunities for writers in Second Life, but today I want to talk about this incredible object—the virtual book!

My first surprise (relevant to this topic, anyway!) was how many libraries are located in Second Life. Then I began to discover books all over SL.

Hard to read book in Second LifeBut gimme a break: how do you read a book that’s the size of one of your desktop icons? (Even for readers a lot younger than me, it would be darn near impossible.) I went searching for the answer, knowing there must be one, given the sheer number of books in SL.

Here’s what I discovered about SL books. (If you’ve never cracked a virtual book, you can use these points to avoid the goofy missteps I took!)

1. Virtual books can be gorgeous. Let me restate that: they’re absolutely, awesomely beautiful! No restrictions on full-color images or inside design elements!

But in your SL inventory, they are just another little yellow cube like any other SL object. So for a while, I didn’t bother to check them out.

2. While books may look like any ol’ object, they don’t rez like ’em at all!!

I so wanted to read AnonLiterary Magazine, which I’d discovered, but my first tries were fruitless.
Here I was, a newbie graduate of Orientation Island and of the many excellent tutorials available at the friendly New Citizens Incorporated Island. I had learned to—ta da!—“rez” objects inworld (which is how you turn one of those plain yellow cubes in your inventory into anything from a new shirt to a gigantic mansion.)

So, I applied the same technique to the AnonLiterary Magazine:

  1. Drag box out of inventory.
  2. Unpack box that shows up on the ground.
  3. Copy contents of box to inventory.
  4. Delete box from ground.
  5. Voila!

Except, when I then looked at the parts and pieces in my inventory, I had a bunch of one-line messages, a totally geek-looking programming script, and no journal!!

3. Virtual books don’t “unpack”: they “rez” whole and intact. But I wandered for quite some time not knowing that.

Alas Zerbino tries to read Second Life book attached to handI’d see all these books I wanted to read, but couldn’t find the magic words, the abracadabra that would open them. Until one day I came upon an open book lying on a table. I tiptoed up to it (quite certain it would snap shut and lock up if it heard me coming), and tentatively touched one of the pages. Whoosh . . . click! The page turned! I touched it again and again, flipping through all the pages, closing the book, and reopening it.

Another SL milestone! I’d figured how to read inworld books!! I went back to my then home base at INKsters and grabbed all the issues of ANON I could find, then scurried off to a corner of the INKsters Rose Garden to rez and read the journals. This time when I dragged the object from my inventory, I simply clicked on it . . . and lo, it opened up for me! I felt like I’d found the key to a treasure chest.

Unfortunately, part of the magazine was stuck into the ground, so I had to fiddle with repositioning it until I could see an entire two-page spread. Then I proceeded to read—or rather to try to read—the short stories and poems in there. Because in order to actually read the words, I had to:

  1. Zoom in close to the pages.
  2. Tilt and rotate my “camera” so the pages weren’t skewed or upside down or inside out.
  3. Attempt the impossible task of keeping the camera totally still, when any touch of the keyboard or mouse makes it jump all over the place.
  4. Stop breathing (almost).

I didn’t read much of AnonLiterary that day . . . or for many days afterward!

Alas Zerbino trying to read Second Life book attached to her nose4. Virtual books are best read “worn”! But I didn’t know that. I kept my ignorance a secret for many weeks.

Then one day as I was traipsing around SL, I overheard an avatar tell another to wear her book! (If you’re new to Second Life, you “wear” everything from jewelry and clothes, to food and drinks, to bicyles and surfboards. To “wear” something means to attach it to you in the right position to use. For example, I “wear” my bike on my pelvis.)

So I fled to a back corner of Story Mountain to apply my new knowledge. I opened my inventory of books, and this time, instead of dragging one onto the ground, I clicked to “wear” it.

But then the question arose: where do I wear it? On my hand? My chest? Eyes? Nose? SL has an awful lot of options! I tried several, but while I got pretty close-up and personal with the book, I never did figure out how to wear it so I could read it.

Finally, in desperation, I went to the two manufacturers of SL printing presses (I’ll tell more about them in a later post) and at last found the answer:

Books are “HUD attachments.” Huh???

Alas Zerbino reading SLiterary Magazine in Second LifeHUD stands for Heads-Up Display, a geek’s way of describing something that shows on your PC screen as if it’s glued to a single place on that screen. Turns out, all I had to do was choose “wear” without saying where to wear it, and the book pops up in a nice big display on my screen, where I can read it straight-on and move all around without ever disrupting it.

Finally, after all this time, I got to read SL books easily and to my heart’s content. And there are some wonderful Second Life publications to read! In my next post, I’ll provide details about some of the literary publications that offer good reading and publishing outlets for writers.

Meanwhile, what are your experiences with Second Life books? Read any good ones? Published work in any of the books or magazines? Or just wrestled with ’em? Post a comment and tell us about it!
PhotobucketAs a jaded, viagra dosage know-it-all teen and young adult in the ’60s and ’70s, and I smirked self-righteously whenever I met a groupie: you know, try those star-struck teeny-boppers who swooned at the mere sight of Mick Jagger or fought their way to the front at a Beatles concert and screamed and fainted as John, Paul, George, and Ringo came running onto the stage. Even worse were the ones (mostly girls) who would trade sexual favors for the “privilege” of hanging out with the rock stars of the day.

Yuck!

But now I’m a groupie and loving every minute of it! Because I’ve discovered that the best way to get involved and have fun in Second Life is to join its groups.

Virtual worlds are huge, and Second Life is becoming almost as big and complicated as the physical world. So when “newbies,” as they are called, take their first avatar-steps on Orientation Island, they often have the virtual-world equivalent of that “all dressed up and nowhere to go” sensation. How do I conquer this strange, immense territory?

“Groups,” I tell them. “Become a groupie.”

Here’s how it works: Just like in First Life, people in Second Life gravitate into communities with shared interests and goals. These are the groups that filter the vast resources of SL into containers you can actually get your hands around. Groups are essentially communities of like-minded avatars, and often provide places to go and activities to participate in.

How do you find the right groups? Often by trial and error–but we’re talking fast, easy trials!

At the bottom of your SL viewer is a button labeled Search. (The Search window in general is an avatar’s best friend, especially as you get acquainted with SL.) One of the tabs in the Search window is Groups. Click that tab and your fun is about to begin.

Here’s how I discovered the writing wealth in SL through its groups:

  1. I ran several Group searches on words such as writer, writing, literary, and author.
  2. I ordered the results by the number-of-members column, figuring that the groups with the most members probably had the most going on (though that turned out not always to be true).
  3. I read the intro details for each group whose name seemed to fit my interest and had no joining fee. (I still haven’t joined a group with a fee!)
  4. If the details sounded promising, I immediately joined the group, which gave me access to its Notices page. There I looked at the past notices. If there were none and the group had been around for a while, I put it on my “probably not” list. Otherwise I read the notices to get more of a sense of what they did.
  5. When I had a comfortable number of groups, I began to explore them: I teleported to their “home base” and attended every reading, workshop, meeting, party, and other event they offered.
  6. I began to meet other writers—people from all over the world—and would look at their profiles to see what groups they belonged to. When I found groups I hadn’t heard of yet, I’d check them out.
  7. I also looked at the Picks in their profiles, looking for places geared toward writers. I’d check out these places, and sometimes find a great group to join there.
  8. Within a short time, I’d hit my SL limit of 25 groups and had to start culling. I left those that seemed inactive and those in niches (such as sci-fi and horror) that I wasn’t particularly interested in.

Using this process, I quickly got to know a lot of what was happening on the Second Life writing scene, and before long, I was so busy networking and sharing and learning with my new writer friends, that I felt like an old hand at SL.

I’ve heard rumors that the 25-group cap will someday be removed from Second Life, and I can hardly wait—because I have a lot of other interests for which I want to become a “groupie”!

A few of my favorite active groups for writers (with links to their blog or website if they have one):

In future posts, I’ll describe some of the great programs these and other groups offer writers in Second Life, including professional workshops, classes for all levels, contests, open mic events, conversations with widely acclaimed First Life authors, and more!

I know I’m not a cat because I’m still alive after decades of following my curiosity into a vast assortment of situations–some good, migraine some not-so-good. That’s how I got to Second Life, ampoule too.

I’m always on the lookout for what’s new. What’s new out there? In there? Beyond here and there? And so it was that on one gloomy winter day in February 2008, as I was skimming through a trade journal to catch up on new methods in my professional field (instructional design), I came across this blurb for an article in
The e-Learning Guild‘s Learning Solutions e-Magazine:

Give Your e-Learning Some (Second) Life: Simulation Made Easy
By Bill Brandon

Second Life offers a flexible, low-cost environment for building simulations, and it presents few, if any, barriers to entry. This week, read about the real Second Life and its potential for many different approaches to learning, from a current part-time in-world resident.

Being a lover of both graphics and words, it caught my imagination: corporations training employees in what looked like a fun, colorful environment! And one that requires no travel! Despite my inability then to grasp the notion of a virtual world like Second Life, and setting aside my fear of those strange concantenation of letters, numbers, and symbols they called SLURLs, I had to find out more!

I barely skimmed the article before I clicked open a new tab in my Firefox browser and typed in a formula I was familiar with: the URL for Second Life.

I couldn’t believe my eyes! Had I been under a rock the past four-plus years? I mean, I’m one of those who waited in line to get the very first of The Sims games!

So, with my usual “relaxed pace,” I RUSHED into Second Life. I had to see what I thought was a 3D version of The Sims.

I barely remember SL’s Orientation Island. I don’t think I even landed on Help Island! I just chose an avatar style (cybergoth–see photo above–because I still thought this was a game), and headed out to find all of these new-media corporate training sites.

Wham!! If you’ve already joined Second Life, you know what I mean. If you haven’t, well, try to imagine your first day as a new-born in First Life. Sorta overwhelming, believe me!

I soon discovered SL is not a game; it’s a whole new universe with as much variety and as many mysteries as First Life. (Some people call their earth-based physical-world existence “Real Life”; I prefer “First Life,” because which one is more real?? Hard to say!)

So, I plunged into SL not knowing what the heck I was doing or where to go. (That SLURL concept became even more unfathomable once I got “inworld”!)

Fortunately, because I’m a ‘Net nerd, I found this wonderful blog that offered a beginner’s guide to SL. I’ll always be grateful to Natalia Zeminov’s The Mermaid Diaries, and I always urge my friends to go there before they go into SL.

Following Natalia’s suggestions, I checked out some newbie-friendly places and learned the basics of functioning inworld. And that’s how I found out SL was vastly greater than a fancy web-conferencing site! And how I discovered there was a pretty cool writing community in SL.

Within four days of entry I:

  • Had totally abandoned my search for training venues in SL (and never did make it to that SLURL from the e-learning pub)
  • Had abandoned my cybergoth avatar for one that looked more like a human — but was skinnier, younger, and cuter than my First Life self
  • Was exploring three land parcels that supported writers
  • Had met another avatar who would become a great friend and partner in the Story Mountain Center for Writers we’d eventually build

And then I began to realize the prophetic nature of the name I picked for my avatar. Because you have to create a name before you step foot inside of SL, I had no concept of its importance — it’s as impactful and long-lasting as the name you got at First Life birth.

I was in an impulsive mood when I joined SL, so I rapidly scrolled through the list of last names provided by Linden Lab (creator of Second Life) until I was at the Z’s. Now, you have to choose one from their list, so being in a hurry, I scanned the Z names on my screen, thought Zerbino was fine, and clicked to choose it.

Then I learned I had to create my own first name. It could be anything, I was told. Well, I sure didn’t want to waste more time outside of SL, so I thought to myself, How about A to Z–just think of a name beginning with A. And the first word that came to mind was Alas, as in “alas, the day is done”–not as in “Alice. ”

I typed in “Alas,” clicked the button to give birth to Alas Zerbino, and embarked on journey of discovery that won’t end until I’ve found all the writer-related stuff in Second Life–from A to Z.
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, viagra I know it’s a cliche, sovaldi but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, buy newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Photobucket
Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, order I know it’s a cliche, this web but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Photobucket
Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, sick I know it’s a cliche, check but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Photobucket
Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!

A kid in a candy store! Yeah, health system I know it’s a cliche, but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Photobucket
Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!

A kid in a candy store! Yeah, epidemic I know it’s a cliche, but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!

A kid in a candy store! Yeah, this I know it’s a cliche, but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Photobucket
Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, condom I know it’s a cliche, disinfection but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, phthisiatrician I know it’s a cliche, unhealthy but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, viagra order newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, phthisiatrician I know it’s a cliche, unhealthy but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, viagra order newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
Joan Kremer is a professional business/nonfiction writer, recipe
novelist, short story writer, editor of an online literary journal, and most recently co-owner of the Story Mountain Center for Writers in Second Life®, where she goes by the avatar name Alas Zerbino (shown in picture below).

Alas Zerbino
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, phthisiatrician I know it’s a cliche, unhealthy but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, viagra order newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
Joan Kremer is a professional business/nonfiction writer, recipe
novelist, short story writer, editor of an online literary journal, and most recently co-owner of the Story Mountain Center for Writers in Second Life®, where she goes by the avatar name Alas Zerbino (shown in picture below).

Alas Zerbino
Joan Kremer is a professional business/nonfiction writer, capsule
novelist, apoplexy
short story writer, editor of an online literary journal, and most recently co-owner of the Story Mountain Center for Writers in Second Life®, where she goes by the avatar name Alas Zerbino (shown in picture below – writing in Second Life!).

Alas Zerbino blogging away in Second Life
A kid in a candy store! Yeah, phthisiatrician I know it’s a cliche, unhealthy but sometimes those are the only ways to describe something. And I’d never felt more like a kid surrounded by all the free candy I wanted — or like Alice in only the best parts of Wonderland — than I did when I first stepped foot on Second Life’s Orientation Island as Alas Zerbino, viagra order newbie avatar.

Not only could I combine my fascination with technology, my love of computer graphic design, and my addiction to learning and information-gathering in this magical 3D world, but I also, quite accidentally, discovered a vast wealth of resources for writers, available 24/7, at no cost, and as easy as opening a computer app!

I was quite head over heels in love with my brave new “world.”

Kristin Hannah appears on Authors in Your Pocket!

Peggy Hicks of Second Life Cable Network TV interviews best-selling novelist Kristin Hannah during her twice-monthly Authors in Your Pocket! show, where SL avatars can interact directly with the author. I’ve met more published authors in SL through this and other events than I have in all my years in First Life!

In only the first month in Second Life, I:

  • Took writing workshops from published authors
  • Entered (and won) writing contests
  • Discovered a ton of new nonfiction markets
  • Chatted face-to-face (or avatar-to-avatar) with well-known authors from around the world.

And that’s just the beginning!

I tried to describe this incredible virtual world to friends and family, but found it impossible to do it justice. A few of my attempts:

  • Parallel universe
  • Nearly infinite playground
  • Mind-blower
  • The Matrix run by the good guys

But the best part for a writer like me, living in a small town in a rural part of the physical world, it gave me a mainline injection of ideas, inspiration, and markets for my writing.

The funny thing is, I first meandered into Second Life for a totally different reason (a story I’ll share another time), never dreaming it would completely revamp and exponentially expand my writing life.

I decided to start this blog to share my findings on the many ways that Second Life (and other virtual worlds) can help writers of every genre improve their writing, increase their publishing opportunities, and expand their writing community to truly “meta-physical” levels!

If you have questions you want answered or ideas for me to write about, please send me an email! I look forward to expanding our collective understanding of this new writers’ world!
Joan Kremer is a professional business/nonfiction writer, recipe
novelist, short story writer, editor of an online literary journal, and most recently co-owner of the Story Mountain Center for Writers in Second Life®, where she goes by the avatar name Alas Zerbino (shown in picture below).

Alas Zerbino
Joan Kremer is a professional business/nonfiction writer, capsule
novelist, apoplexy
short story writer, editor of an online literary journal, and most recently co-owner of the Story Mountain Center for Writers in Second Life®, where she goes by the avatar name Alas Zerbino (shown in picture below – writing in Second Life!).

Alas Zerbino blogging away in Second Life

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