I’ve been a lot of things in Second Life. I’ve been a neko, a model, a photographer, a store owner, a stripper, an escort, a scene kid, a club hopper, a roleplayer, and a griefer. In 6 years, I’ve been many things, but I’ve never been important.
SL has done a lot for me over the time I’ve been here, as on and off as it’s been in the past. For the first three years and a handful of months, I had no niche. I had no group, no stable friends, and no community to be a part of. I was a floater. Okay, that’s a lie. I had groups, but they aren’t ones I’m willing to acknowledge anymore. Regardless, I never had anywhere I fit in. I was always “the girlfriend”, “the sidekick”, or something even less. And while that doesn’t sound like a huge source of self esteem or respect, it was still pretty big for me. While the groups were small and I was more or less pushed to the outside, I was still a part of it.
I met my first (and only) boyfriend in Second Life, met a friend (who I’ve since lost touch with) that I’ve met in real life twice, but other than that, my first few years were full of nothing. Absolutely nothing. I shopped, went to virtual weddings, and opened numerous crappy stores.
It was only three years ago, through fleeting friendship, that I found roleplay. For the first time since I started SL, I had a community to be a part of. I formed relationship with dear friends, had legitimate fun every day, and even started planning things for the sim. But things don’t tend to stay the same. Two years later, everything slowed down, people stopped appreciating events I coordinated, and the majority of the friendships I thought I’d formed turned out to be superficial.
There’s still a plus side to all of this though. During my life in RP, one of my friends started blogging, and this peaked my interest. I knew it was out there, but I never paid much attention to it. It only took me a couple of months to make the decision to start blogging.
Why décor? Because there’s an oversaturation of fashion blogs. There’s no rhyme or reason behind it other than that. Within 10 days, I was getting review copies, and within two months I was attached to feeds. I was excited. I was talking to designers that I’d raised on insanely high pedestals like Winter Thorn and Froukje Hoorenbeek, and in some cases, forming friendships. One convinced me to join plurk, and I was plunged into the drama within days. Despite a warning to “stay out of it”, I decided to IM Isla and tell her my real feelings on what was really happening. It changed my life.
This lead to some of the best months of my life. I started out managing Cheeky Pea’s blog, then began sending out group notices, then became store manager a few months later, and finally ended up as Isla’s personal slave. I do everything from checking rental boxes and organizing events for The Nest, to keeping calendars and fixing failed transactions. It sounds horrible, doesn’t it? But I love ever single bit of what I do. I have fun figuring out details, IMing creators, and fixing mistakes. I love my job, and the best part about it is that everything I do is appreciated.
I’ve finally found a niche where I fit, a community that needs, wants, and appreciates me for me and what I do. After years of being everything under the sun I could be, I’m finally important.
Living in Vancouver, Canada, Valena is 20 years old, and turns 21 in less than a month. After nearly three years of roleplaying, she left to focus her SLife on blogging. In the span of a year, she’s blogged for numerous events, created a few of her own, and is now Isla Gealach’s personal assistant.