Oh man! I could write 20 pages on this, but I’ll try to spare y’all and keep it as succinct as possible.
The one that’s had the biggest impact on me is the online writers community. There are some websites that we frequent, but it’s a kind of organic, awesome thing centered around Twitter and a few blogs. This past year I’ve been completely blown away by the support and camaraderie I’ve found online. I’ve met people that make me laugh every day (even when I want to cry after getting a rejection), people who celebrate and mourn with me, who cheer me on when I feel like setting fire to my manuscript. It’s been indispensible.
If you’re not quite yet involved with this community (and would like to be), here are some tips:
- If you don’t have it, get Twitter. Seriously. If you’re scared or hesitant, I’d be glad to discuss it with you one-on-one and help you get started. I’ve run social media campaigns for several small non-profits and websites and have helped dozens of writers get started. I love doing it. Send me an email.
- Once you have twitter, check out hashtags like #amwriting, #askagent, #kidlit, #yalit, #kidlitchat, #yalitchat, #pubtip, #writegoal. Follow people, read their blogs, click on links, comment
- Check out some (or all) of the links in my sidebar over there ß
Another, similar community I’ve been becoming more ensconced in is my local writers community. Trust me, I’m one of the biggest proponents of online interaction, but sometimes there’s nothing like sitting down to a cup of coffee with other writers, getting face to face critiques, discussing the business when you can see the plentiful smiles and feel the hugs.
For 2011 I have two exciting new communities I’ll be taking by storm ;-) One is a small YA writing community that I’ll be able to make official announcements about soon! (Keep an eye out for those announcements cuz it’s going to be AWESOME!)
The second (which I will also be talking about soon) will find me more involved with local artists of all kinds. I’m talking sculptors, musicians, graphic designers, poets, singers, actors, artists, photographers. And writers of course. Gosh, I’m getting so excited now just thinking about it!
What about you? What communities have you become more involved in in 2010 and which do you hope to join in 2011?
This post is part of my #reverb10. Visit their website to learn more.
PS: Since y’all asked so nicely, here’s the recipe for that beautiful Chicken Bistro Twist pictured on yesterday’s blog.
- 1 cup chopped cooked chicken
- ½ cup diced red bell pepper
- ¼ cup snipped fresh basil leaves
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 garlic clove, pressed
- 2 packages (11 oz each) refrigerated French bread dough
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon Pantry Italian Seasoning Mix
1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F). Chop chicken. Dice bell pepper. Snip basil using kitchen shears. In bowl, combine chicken, bell pepper, basil, ¼ cup of the Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, mayonnaise and garlic; mix well.
2) Place bread dough, seam sides up, on smooth side of a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, slice each loaf lengthwise, end to end, cutting halfway through to center of loaf; spread open flat. Lightly sprinkle flour evenly over dough (I didn’t do this). Flatten dough crosswise to about 4-inch width, creating a well down center of each loaf.
3) Spoon half of the chicken mixture down center of each loaf. Gather up edges over filling, pinching firmly to seal. Place loaves, seam sides down, in an “X” pattern on a baking pan. Crisscross ends of dough to form a large figure-8, keeping ends of dough 1 inch from edge of the pan and leaving two 1 ½ inch openings in center of twist.
4) Combine egg white and seasoning mix; lightly brush over dough. Cut a 3-inch slit in each of the top sections of the twist to reveal filling. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese over loaf. Bake 30-32 minutes or until deep golden brown. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes.
8 servings at 300 calories each. You can also experiment with the filling if you’d like!