On Monday I changed my Twitter name to @SusannahConway. This might not sound like a big deal but, strangely, it felt like one. But it’s less about this happening on Twitter and more about me stepping into my name. I’ve been easing into this since I started blogging under my own domain last year. That felt huge. When I first started blogging in 2006 I only ever used my first name and was always worried that “someone” would find my blog. I couldn’t tell you who that someone actually was — it certainly wasn’t a real person — but for some reason i wanted to retain a smidge of anonymity in my online dealings.

Obviously that didn’t last long :)

I bought my own domain name back in 2005 — a friend had suggested I make a website to showcase my journalism and it’s thanks to her foresight that I snapped up susannahconway.com when I did. I was still swimming in grief back then, but putting together that site was my first step on the internet highway and gave me something to focus on when my days were aimless, tearstained and, more worryingly, unemployed. A few months later I stumbled upon my first blog and the rest, as they say, is history.

So now here I am, more visible on the internets than i ever thought possible.

When I first joined Twitter it was just for fun– i had no idea that i would ever actually a) understand why anyone would bother with the site and b) come to enjoy it myself. @photobird was my user name and an alter ego of sorts. I tweeted as myself, of course, but i quite liked having a nickname i could use in different ways.

When I’d finished writing the book I figured it was time to tweet under my own name, being an author and all… but the name was taken. The account wasn’t being used, and I could tell the ‘other’ Susannah had it — the one who lives elsewhere in the UK and is also a photographer (what are the odds?). It took me a while to build up the ovaries to contact her. But I am so glad I did because she was LOVELY and was happy to let me take over our name (thank you, hon!)

So now I’m out on Twitter. And it feels good.

Do you guys feel comfortable using your name on the internet?

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Tomorrow I’m going to show you something else that bears my name… the cover of my book!