For over 16 years, Second Life has been a part of my life, in one way or another. It has sparked creative and engineering talents that I didn't even know I had, providing many years of artistic expression and even a source of income. It has been an invaluable testbed for developing characters, settings, and concepts for my writing. It helped me meet lifelong friends, add new dimensions to existing relationships, and find myself in profound ways. Simply put, I would not be the woman I am today without it.
Second Life (often abbreviated "SL"), for those unfamiliar with it, is a vast, richly-developed 3D virtual world; some people refer to it as a "game", but that implies a well-defined experience with specific goals, and SL is definitely not that. It's more akin to a platform that you can use to create your own game-like experience, and generally find your fun, whatever form that takes. And, it's also a powerful platform for artistic expression and encouraging creativity, in a staggering variety of media and formats.