Friday, May 27, 2011

Book Junkies: Where Everybody (Sort of) Knows Your Name

Image of Gertrude Stein and Jack Hemingway in ...Image via Wikipedia
Gertrude Stein with Hemingway's son

When I was a kid, I dreamed of moving to New York or London or Paris and becoming a writer. I thought I’d live in a tiny apartment and walk everywhere so that I could absorb the culture and really have my finger on the pulse of the city. I also thought I’d find a small community of other writers – possibly ex-pats, as I imagined I would be – who would support and grow with me. We’d be the equivalent of Hemingway, Stein, and the rest. We’d set the literary stage afire again.

Okay, so my dreams might have been a little far-reaching. At the very least, though, I pictured my own version of Cheers – a place where everyone knew my name and might even shout it out as I entered.

I’ll be forty in six months. I never moved to a big city – instead my city, Phoenix, grew up around me. I never was much of a drinker…probably a good thing. And I never found a place where I felt welcomed and comfortable in the company of other writers – until very recently.

I stumbled upon Book Junkies through the blog post of a member a few months ago now. I felt instantly welcomed. This community of writers and readers is truly like a gathering of kindred souls. You can almost feel the crackle of creativity when you read the posts in the various Book Junkies pages. One of our members, Helmy, even tackled a wonderful flash-fiction collaborative book which will be available for free on Smashwords sometime next month (I’ll be sure to post about it when it comes out). The readers have tackled their own projects, offering book reviews and a beta reader service to interested writers.

So why haven’t I blogged about this before? Honestly, selfishness has kept me silent. I love having a place where people are interested in one another’s thoughts and writing processes. I love visiting Book Junkies and feeling welcome in that small community. I feared that, as Book Junkies grew, it might lose that comfortable feeling.

No more. Book Junkies might not be for everyone, but we have writers and readers of every stripe – from Romance to Horror, from Mainstream to Steam Punk. If you think this could be the community you’ve been looking for, I hope you’ll join us. That’s the great thing about the internet – there’s no capacity limit.

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  1. I will check Book Junkies out. I have been exploring Goodreads lately and find it really interesting, though I haven't completely gotten the hang of it yet.

    I'm quite sure these communities are important for one's growth, but like everything social media, it takes time.

  2. Thanks for stopping by! I hope to see you at Book Junkies.

    I really enjoy Goodreads. I wish more readers and writers would find and take advantage of it.

  3. Thank you,Susan! Book Junkies is indeed a place where we want everyone to feel welcome,readers and authors!Ideally, we would like think it is a group where we explore new work and introduce new authors.I have indeed broadened my reading genre since being on the group and would like to see others doing the same.
    Personally,you have been a great influence on me, i loved Circle City Blues and will look forward to reading more from you.
    I love that we support each other!

  4. Thanks for commenting, Sue! And thanks for helping to create such a warm and welcoming venue for writers and readers.


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