Thursday, October 18, 2018

Project October: Day Eighteen: Becoming an Influencer and Reader (off the record and outtakes)


Recently, I was introduced to the world of "influencers" on social media.   I was previously in the dark about this idea, but there is an Influencer conference (I think in Michigan), and I heard about it through someone else I follow on social media.

This particular person was very different from myself-- she was a "Public Figure" and from Michigan, had crazy tattoos and wild hair. But she and her husband were living on a bus with little to no earthly possessions, and they were traveling around for her husband's very creative and artistic successful job.  They were influencers in their own neck of the woods.

When I decided to start a blog around the time of Molly's birth in 2008, with dabbling in blogging even before that time, I wanted to keep the family updated with our life, but I also wanted to influence the world for good.  I had a problem of not really knowing who I was, so that took some (a lot) of time.  I went to Westmont College in CA for 2 years and Covenant for 2 years, so that was a lot of social justice mixed with media.

The main thing I did was to blog at Vox Luminis to share my pro-life passion, in addition to playing around with blogging on my Mommy blog, Love Baby Beck -now private- way back then.  I didn't care about social media back then. Nothing was really around except for Facebook, and FB was (in my mind) for true friends and little else. If you wanted to be brave and "branch out" into the world of the public, the main way you did that was through reading blogs.

Eventually, I started writing for online sites such as Catholic Mom and Dappled Things (only recently).  I decided that my sphere of influence would increase, incrementally,but I didn't want to do anything unless God's spirit was in it.  There are some things I never discuss publicly, and my departure from Catholic Mom is one of them.  But it was an amicable departure.  Honestly, the spirit wasn't in it for me anymore, so I decided to set my sites elsewhere. No looking back.

Another slightly random thing I can't really discuss online is the circumstances of my brother's adoption.  People who know my family know most of the story.  I'm not at liberty to talk about the circumstances, other than to say that he was in the category of "special needs" when my parents adopted him, because his mother was addicted to drugs.  If I could change anything about my platform from the beginning, I wish I had cared more about this aspect of my life and less about what my parents cared about (pro-life issues being the beginning, middle, and end of all political and religious debates).

The last thing I will say about being an online influencer is that I was really starting to blossom in my own right when I started to harness the passion of reading a few years ago.  I started to define myself as bookish, and when people online --such as celebrities-- started to make that ok, my nerdiness had a fit because it was finally legit in the mainstream to be a bookworm! I was so excite!

I think I will say that if you want to be an influencer, you have to be willing to go where the spirit leads you.  I think that's about all I want to say about that.  There are artists, there are creatives. There are people who are using their gifts and talents in an artistic way. If you long to be an artist, put yourself out there. Start. Everyone starts somewhere. The only way to get better is to try and keep trying.  Social media has changed all of our lives. I recently decided to make my instagram private. Again, just because the spirit wasn't in it anymore.  I don't have much to say about that because it was recent, but it is what it is. There is a constant high reel in our minds and in our hands.  I suppose for some social media is an art form. For some it's a drug.   Photography is a beautiful thing really. Drug culture isn't. Ha. It is only when that god becomes a demon that it is time for a change.



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