I'm back! May relative obscurity wrap me in its fluffy arms and say 'welcome home.'
In 21 hours, 7 minutes and 20 seconds Ms Twitter UK comes to an end. I'm 1048 in the lead so it's pretty likely that I will win. My long-standing online chums know there's always some method behind my mad schemes. This one has certainly been madder than most but I'm uber chuffed about how well it has gone.
As I've said before, my sense of self worth has never been bound up in this contest: my bid for the Ms Twitter UK crown was a cheeky attempt at subverting a cultural milieu that prizes youth and beauty over age and experience. It was always a bit tongue-in-cheek. Beauty and popularity contests have never been my thing. When I was the age of the celebrity in second place, I was deep in books on legislation, psychology, politics and sociology. I shook my fists at inequality and hated the fact that I had the kind of looks that made people say 'oh, isn't she sweet when she's angry?' when I laid into them about equal pay. This contest, for me and my book-loving followers, has been a fun way to promote the idea that the pen is mightier than the pin-up.
Miss Nobody - The Randomer
One thing I hadn't prepared myself for when I embarked upon this cheeky jaunt into Twitter stardom was how very seriously other people would take it. The best example of this is the endless abuse I have suffered from fans of The Saturdays - a UK pop group. The person in second place is 'Vanessa from The Saturdays' and evidently a large number of teenagers were heavily invested in her winning this contest. On The Saturdays' official website were calls for votes and much celebration when she finally 'won'...except she hadn't won. I came out of nowhere and beat her. This went down very badly indeed.
The first wave of attacks came on Twitter. Two fans of The Saturdays launched missive-missiles at me and my followers. I found it quite amusing and adopted the title 'Miss Nobody' they had given me with some pride. I was perturbed to have lost my crown polish but otherwise was entertained by the exchange. My followers were of a different mind and retaliated. Who knew publishers, editors and librarians were such 'bad-asses'?! In the end, I chatted with the girls who agreed I wasn't 'that bad' and asked me to call off my followers. It all ended well enough and I thought that was the end of it.
When I noticed that the vitriol was continuing elsewhere, I blocked them and got on with my life. Days passed. I googled my name to see what impact the contest was having on my Google placement and found a link to an ant's nest of bad feeling.
About 50 pages of official 'The Saturdays' site had been set aside for defaming 'the randomer' who was stealing Vanessa's rightful throne. 'The Randomer' beat 'Miss Nobody' as a name so I also adopted that one. The pages and pages of utter drivel about me have given me some fairly impressive super-villain powers.
- I can hack Wikipedia (isn't it open anyhow? That one's not a great super-power).
- I can, and frequently do, hack into the Ms Twitter UK contest and change the results.
- I have also hacked the Ms Twitter UK contest to stop people being able to vote continuously for Vanessa (obviously I left the 20 min delay in on votes for me just for a laugh).
- Nobody votes for me for any reason. They are all brainwashed by me because of my hate for Vanessa (for whom I have no bad feeling whatever given that I'd never even heard of her until they started attacking me).
So, I am master hacker and brain-washer. If I had only known this sooner I would have chosen a different career path. Doh!
I have accomplished everything I set out to accomplish with this contest. My following has expanded but, more importantly I have shown:
- Neither age nor wealth, physical ability or mobility need be a barrier to success online,
- The book community is HUGELY motivated online. This is significant information for those considering the digital future of the book industry,
- I am good at mobilising an army of book lovers. This is comforting for whichever publisher decides to take me on,
- I am now on friendly terms with some of the most important people on twitter and in the book industry
- I have a platform to gain column inches. If I make a comment about the publishing industry/reading community on twitter it will have more quotability if I'm 'Ms Twitter'.
Will pop back on after Ms Twitter UK ends and let you know whether or not I won. Thanks for all your support. My followers are amazing.