Chapter 1 of Novel: Instafamous
CHAPTER 1: USER PROFILE
There’s always that initial rush that see-saws between agonising fearful nausea and giddy unbridled excitement. And there’s nothing you can do except wait. Biding away the unforgiving time. Once or twice between breaths the waiting becomes far too much. Your spit drips down your throat like magma and the walls around you threaten to cave in without remorse. Which in this state seems like a more pleasant fate.
All at once you start to contemplate every decision you’ve ever made. Questioning whether or not this agonising wait is punishment for a life selfishly lived or unfulfilled. Then come the existential questions. Am I not who I think I am? Has the world ceased to care about me? Am I, dare I say it, boring, unattractive and obsolete?
But then it comes. Like an ocean breeze. The cold inviting calm. All your internal struggle and agonising comes to a full and complete halt. The world around you is finally at peace.
But hey, who doesn’t get stressed uploading a new selfie to Instagram or Facebook?
Seeing a barrage of little orange hearts pop up on my Instagram feed and red notifications on my Facebook page, is pretty close to nirvana to me. Its a silly tradition I have but its one that seems to work.
Once I take a few selfies, I select the best 10 of the 80 or so that I’ve taken. After that its the taxing and sometimes draining act of picking the exact one that works. More often than not it’s one of me facing left with my eyes glancing towards the camera. Either from top level or eye level. It’s a difficult angle to get and more often than I not I have to engage in some serious yoga positions with a selfie stick to get it. But it’s always worth it as these selfies are liked consistently and with a huge number of comments.
I leave the room for a shower to get changed, my phone’s screen lingering in the corner of my eye. A small smirk lurks across my face. The picture was posted about 5 minutes ago and its already racked in about 30 likes. Not bad at all.
As I remove my clothes and turn the temperature knobs of the shower I remember the good old days when I used to rack at least 70-100 likes in a minute after uploading a picture. Almost as good as Drake or Kim Kardashian. It was when you were still able to ‘buy’ ‘followers’ and ‘likes’. This came down to transferring around $150-$250 to a skuzzy Russian based site who also boasted to help you ‘find hot sluts in your area’ and ‘make $25 000 a day from home!’. These Warren Buffets of the deep would then assure me that their roster of ‘ghost profiles’ or fake accounts would follow you ( not all at once of course so as to not raise suspicion) and like every photo that you posted within seconds of it being posted.
I slipped on my shower cap, pressing stray strands of my quiff underneath. There was no way in hell I was blow drying, straightening and putting product in my hair again. Shit. I’m almost out of heat protector, I better tell Dad. Just hope he doesn’t get that generic crap again, there’s no way in hell I’m dealing with my hair being flakey again.
I decided to settle on 500 followers who would remain on my account permanently, while the likes I would have to pay for on a month by month basis. $180 was quite steep, but I told my dad I was doing a marketing and management course at one of the community colleges in the area. I forked out the money for the followers and just spent time at the mall when I was meant to be at class. I know he would freak out, but he just doesn’t get it. He still has this dinosaur mentality of how money is made. The old ‘get a job’ ‘work hard’ ‘earn it yourself’ crap was the mantra my dad liked to live by. He doesn’t understand that getting followers and getting likes is not just about ego, its about building personal brand. So really, I was doing a course in marketing and management right? If anything my Instagram account is kind of like my business. As I enter my room, towel around me and water dripping off my body, I smile and see that business is booming. After a 10 minute shower my likes had shot up to 80 likes and there were even two comments! The one was from Jenxx97 who asked me to follow her back. I probably wouldn’t. You see some people like your photos with the tacit understanding that you’ll like theirs. The same rule applies to following a person’s profile. But once you get over 1000 followers those rules don't apply to you. I could afford to lose one follower. The other was from Palashsohard, a girl who I had started following about a year ago. She signed off with her signature love eyes emoticon and a drooling face emoticon. I liked her. Her pictures were always edited so well and she had a ridiculous body.
As I looked over the picture again, I was pretty proud of my editing. Valencia was by far my favourite effect to use but shirtless selfies always looked way better through a Hudson filter, after editing the resolution and transparency of course.
Choosing my outfit for the day was my next challenge. It didn’t make any sense to look amazing in a photo and then ugly in real life. That’s how you get a bad reputation as fake. And that’s how you lose followers. I was not about that life. I checked out the ‘Styleguide’, a page I follow as to how to do my hair and what clothes to wear. I decided to settle on a green parka, a faded white shirt, black ripped skinnies and my new Air Maxes. I looked in the mirror and was very happy with what I saw. I looked good. I snapped a couple of mirror selfies and resisted the urge to upload another photo. I’d save that one for later.
I plugged in my headphones and walked out the door. The likes kept coming in and I couldn’t be happier. I was getting one step closer to achieving my ultimate dream. I was going to get discovered by a modelling agency or a fashion line and be a style ambassador. It was a really great job. You got paid a set rate per week and then extra commission for every like you get. Plus you get free clothes! That’s my vision and I’m sticking to it.
Aspiring model and fashion designer
Live, Learn, Laugh
Ah damn it. My dad didn’t put my allowance in. I head back in.