I've been thinking a lot lately about how wonderful it is to be part of an online community, mostly in regard to writers. I've met so many people and made so many great friends whom I never would have encountered without the cyber connection.
Writing is a lonely endeavor. Or it can be. Before the Internet, I'd have to wait a whole year for my favorite annual writers conferences to come around so that I could reconnect with writers and get inspired and motivated again. For fourteen years I attended the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold conference, and occasionally the Pikes Peak Writers Conference. That was my only opportunity to meet other writers and industry professionals.
Thanks to email and online community forums and yahoo groups and blogs, you can meet with your writer friends daily! If you want to. Sometimes I really want to. I almost always connect with a few of them every day. I think back to how it used to be and it makes me feel bereft. How did I cope with the emptiness before? I don't know. And though nothing's quite the same as pressing flesh in person, cyber handshakes are pretty cool, too.
There's so much available to writers online these days, aside from just the writing resources and industry news. I'm not even all that proficient with the myriad tools that are out there now. Lots of writers have Internet access, but many have limited knowledge what to do with it. So I'll be teaching a workshop about online resources and communities at this year's Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold conference coming up this September in Denver, Colorado. Not all the details are available yet, and those that are haven't been released for some reason. As soon as they are, I'll definitely post them here.
If you're reading this now, you're probably a friend or acquaintance I've met online somewhere, or you were directed to my blog by one. Whoever you are, I hope to meet you in person someday. But if not, cyber space will do just fine. Thanks for stopping by!