Maggie is my 6 year old, very mixed breed dog. In some ways she’s very smart – too smart – as in knows-how-to-get-in-the-dog-proof-trashcan-smart. Where she’s less than smart is her reaction to being fussed over, whether it’s grooming or being treated for minor health problems. She bites.Her recent ear infection forced me to devise a way to put drops in her ears without getting bitten. Solution: a muzzle and wedging her into the tiny space in the bathroom between tub and toilet. It worked. Houdini couldn’t get out of that space. Interestingly, she stopped struggling and snapping and started letting me put the drops in her ears elsewhere in the house and without the muzzle. Maggie had learned that the drops made her ears feel better.
I’ve talked to lots of writers who resist trying new technologies because of a similar fear of the unknown. Heck, I’ve been there, too. I had never used a computer before enrolling in graduate school in 1991. I learned because it was the only option for doing the class work. (Not to mention my electric typewriter was long gone.) After graduation, eight years with a tech company and seven years of self employment has made me reasonably competent with computers and the Internet. I continue to learn about new software and online trends because my business demands it. I use the library a lot, and have a very large shelf of technical books in my office. For big problems, I have several computer experts in my rolodex.
Do you need to learn a new kind of software, or more about the web? There are tutorials available online and how-to guides in bookstores and libraries. Want personal instruction? There are classes and expert tutors online and just down the street. Knowledge is a great cure for fear of the unknown.