Thursday, June 30, 2011


by Allison Pang

In astrological terms, I was born on the cusp of Leo and Virgo (like my fellow Word Whore Jeffe - we share a birthday, donchakno?) It's a strange place to be. On one hand the Leo in me will often crave the spotlight...but often times when I get it (which doesn't happen much), I find that I don't really want it. Maybe that's the Virgo side. It's a constant play of "Everyone look at mmeeeeee!" and "Oh shit, they're all looking at me!"

It's awkward. Sometimes I can pull it off, but most of the time I can't.

It all goes back to that constant issue of either being too critical of myself or worrying too much about what people think. I work on it, but I do find myself with a fair amount of regrets for not going the extra mile and taking the plunge or what have you.

One thing I've always hated is the camera. (I was extremely shy as a kid, compounded by some pretty goofy looking teeth before braces.) I'm still not particularly fond of it or being video taped actually. A few years ago I had to give a workshop in front of about 200 people at a conference. It was videotaped. I have never watched it.  >_<

Yesterday I had to go the Simon & Schuster office to film my part of a UF roundtable discussion. It was only a few questions and I'm sure it will be up in a few weeks. I'm actually hoping they edit most of my answers out. Even though I had all the answers in my head beforehand, as soon as I got behind the camera and the lights my mind blanked and I became a bit of a gibbering idiot.

In a word? Painful.

I'm actually a tad frustrated at myself. A few years ago I was standing in front of classrooms teaching programming to adults (sometimes 20 or 30 people at a time). It was a very big deal for me at the time - I was a major introvert and being able to finally get my social groove on was a very big deal. I slipped out of that part of my career about 6 years ago and since then I seem to have lost my edge. There's a part of me that wouldn't mind getting it back, but there's another part that's just as happy that part of my life is over.


  1. Hey Allison...lets all of us word-whores develop alter-egos with stage names and let them take the spotlight so we as ourselves can stay outta it. They could even post in our stead sometimes. Whattaya say?

  2. Ack, I think we are kindred souls - I'm an early-in-the-month Virgo, too with the same exact feelings as you. Maybe that's why we're writers - we can get folks to look at our words instead of us. ::g::

  3. I like the idea of stage names. Loved being Uppington, back before I decided I needed to be me on the internets. Much more free, somehow.

  4. There's something about being recorded that just monkeys with a mind during a live performance. Dunno what it is. Mebbe poltergeists?