What Can Online Dating Teach You? An Interview With Author and Online Dater LA Johannesson

If you’re single, out of college, and looking to date, you absolutely must get online. It’s not the only tool in your dating tool belt nor is it a magic cure for all of your dating and relationship problems, but it’s one very helpful avenue for making new connections. I’m a huge proponent of online dating, not only because I met my fiancée on Match.com but also because it’s a vehicle for people to create their own opportunities in their dating and love lives. As a dating coach who teaches women how to date enTREPreneurially, I’m all about encouraging people to find ways to create their own opportunities instead of hoping and praying and wishing for things to change. So, if you’re not online, do a little research, find the right site for you, and make sure you have the best online dating profile possible (check out my online dating profile writing services).

While you’re on the internet doing site research, you should also check out my colleague LA Johannesson’s new book eloves me, eloves me not, a fictional account of a woman named Kayte who turns to online dating to create her own opportunities—way to go Kayte!

I had the chance to chat with LA about her own real-life adventures in online dating; one can only assume she got a lot of the inspiration for her book from her personal experiences. Here are some tasty excerpts from our interview:

What led you to try online dating and what sites did you try?

I tried online dating almost ten years ago. I was curious about the growing phenomenon. I was very busy with work and as terribly unromantic as it sounds, I wanted an efficient way to meet some new men. I also thought it would be a fabulous way to meet men who I wouldn’t otherwise meet. I lived in Toronto then and was on Lavalife mainly, then tried Plenty of Fish for a while.

I find that many singles try online dating, but they don’t give it time. How long were you doing online dating?

I was online dating on and off for about two years. I found it fascinating. I’d chat with a number of guys, I’d meet a few, click with one or two, go on a few dates. It got serious with a couple of guys, but ultimately didn’t work out, so I’d be off and on depending on my circumstance.

What sorts of things as a woman did you look for in men’s profiles?

A sense of humor was first on the list. I also was looking for guys with balance, who seemed like they were interested in a lot of things. An ability to express themselves was key. And those who appeared upbeat and optimistic got my attention.

As for the physical, I’m tall so they had to be at least my height. I’m a sucker for a brunette with friendly eyes. Also, if their photos looked like they were application shots for Playgirl or they included ex-girlfriends or wives in their photos, I gave them a miss.

I help singles write their online dating profiles. Did you have trouble writing yours? How did you make it stand out from the sea of other profiles (you’re a writer — did that help you?)

Nope. No trouble. That was the easy part! I’m a career has marketing and communications gal, so I give good copy. I also was blessed with a pretty wicked sense of humor so both served me well. My profile stood out because I applied the rules of good marketing. It had a great headline, a captivating photo, it was entertaining and unique and memorable. And it worked well. Very well.

Name the best and worst dates you had from your online dating experiences?

Without going into all the gory details, the best was a date that was only supposed to be a brief coffee chat that then turned into a marathon conversation, a leisurely stroll, a lovely dinner we prepared together, a few glasses of wine, loads of laughs and common interests. It was all topped off with an awesome good night kiss that occurred twelve hours after we took our first sip of coffee. The worst? So many to choose from…It was probably the guy who started dropping hints about wanting to borrow money 10 minutes into our first meeting.

I see online dating as an incredible opportunity for self-growth and discovery. What did you learn about yourself during your time online dating?

I learned so much. I learned that there are a lot of lonely people out there. I learned that most people are decent if you give them a chance. I learned that I was more of a catch than perhaps I might have thought going in. I learned that I was really picky. I learned that it wasn’t about the destination but the journey. And most importantly, I learned that the world of online dating makes a great topic for a contemporary novel.

What did your character Kayte learn during her time online dating?

She learned so much. It’s amazing how others taught Kayte so much about herself. Kayte learned that taking a different approach can provide incredible results. She learned what she was and wasn’t prepared to do in the name of love. She learned that, yes, she really did want to find love, even though she was beyond frustrated by the process of looking for it. She learned that even though she wanted to find it, she could survive without it, because she was so blessed in other areas of her life. She learned that good friends and good advice can take you far. And, most of all, She learned that timing is a fundamental in finding love. And you both have to be ready.


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