Mandy Eve-Barnett's Blog for Readers & Writers

My Book News & Advocate for the Writing Community ©

Do You Connect Physically or Virtually or Both..?

March 24, 2014

articlesI read this blog piece a few days ago , which resonated with me on many levels. We are fortunate to have the ability to connect with people from all over the world with the click of a button. Barring time differences we can speak face to face with them as well as converse via various technologies unthought-of in quite recent history. Technology can be a burden but also a gift. Personally, I have met other writers from as far away as America and Warsaw, to name just two. People I would never have met any other way. The American writer posted on a non-writing site and our reponses to a topic were so familiar we began emailing each other. After several months, we found out our lives were mirrors of each other’s life experiences. This culminated in us visiting each ‘homes and becoming firm friends. We call each Soul Sister. The young woman from Warsaw, blogged how she felt alone in her writing, this was a call I could not ignore, so responded with a membership to my writers group as we have virtual as well as local members.  She has since managed to publish her work and enjoys the connection with other writers. This is the positive side of the internet, as well as research possibilities for anything under the sun, we care to find out about. Our curiosity for knowledge can be satisfied with almost no effort at all.

However, not all connections can become physical ones and that is the shame of the internet. We cannot jump on a ‘plane at the drop of a hat in order to travel to far away countries to visit these contacts, for the most part. Our ‘relationships’ are limited to short conversations and ‘funny’ facebook posts. In short it is not a’ true’ friendship with shared experiences but that being said, still important connections for a host of reasons.

Do we hold these ‘virtual’ relationships above physical ones though?  Are we so wrapped up in them that we do not connect with those around us?

How many of you open a conversation in a coffee shop, on a train or bus, even in the food store? People around us are as interesting as those on the computer screen. Has technology taken this ability away? I remember watching my Mother striking up conversations with complete strangers all the time. As a shy child I found this alarming but as I grew up I realized without human contact, we become isolated in a crowd.

We should not be afraid to connect with people – everyone has an interesting story to share after all. Who knows it might be a story idea.

What has been your experience with internet contacts?






  1. I have met some interesting people through virtual sites, but I find particular value – especially since becoming a parent – in face-to-face conversations. I enjoy striking up conversations with other Moms while we’re out and about, and some of these random conversations have lead to lasting friendships. I also cherish the time I’m able to spend in the company of other writers, at events or meetings (as with writing, parenting can be isolating at times!).

    Once my gardening blog is launched, I hope to establish more virtual connections with other like-minded gardeners and writers, but for the time being my main connections are the day-to-day physical ones.


  2. I like that image at the bottom. Nice touch. 🙂


  3. I have met some lovely people over the net, Mandy, you included. We are fortunate being able to communicate with so many people nearly effortlessly. 🙂


  4. I’ve met nice people on Facebook, people from different countries, with different lifestyles and I quite enjoy them even though with some I have very little in common. In recent months, they have been a life line. I do enjoy in person conversations though. I sometimes feel isolated but don’t want to rely only on the Internet to meet my social needs, because, like your mom, I believe in face to face conversation.

    Membership in a Writers Group like SCW eases the isolation and provides me with companionship with others with similar interests.

    Thank you for what you do Mandy. You are a gem!


  5. I love striking up conversations with people I meet in coffee houses, the grocery store, social gatherings, etc. I also have been very fortunate to meet some tremendous bloggers on the internet and have made face-to-face connections. Virtual relationships are different from the relationships where I connect personally. They each add color and substance to my life. However, I must admit that the people who are physically in my life are most cherished. We spend actual time together in conversation and experiencing life together. For this, there is no substitute!


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