That's all well and good, until we need some support. Someone to hold us accountable for our stated goals. Someone to pat our shoulder when we get that story rejected--for the twentieth time. Someone to remind us that the best way out of any snafu we encounter as a writer is to keep writing. Someone to show us a video of babies dancing to bring the good feels back when all we can think about is how our writing is complete crap.
As I've been working to learn more about social media for the purposes of my 'platform', I've discovered fun new ways to surround myself with others who are as obsessed with writing as I am. There are tons and tons, within genres, across genres, for different purposes. Here are a few of my current favorites:
1) #WriteClub: I'm not sure who originated the hashtag, but every Friday, the lovely people at @FriNightWrites on twitter put on a series of writing sprints under that hashtag. This technically only happens for a few hours in a given time-zone, but different people oversee the sprints in different time zones from all around the world, so the hashtag ends up being active all through the day. When the admin calls time, everyone reports how many words they were able to write during the sprint, and there's even one dedicated admin who has been tracking those numbers since the inception of the project, and reports how many cumulative words have been written. @TheSprintShack also runs sprints under this hashtag throughout the week, and people use it to connect through the week as well. This is a great way to get yourself motivated and get some words on that page!
4) #AmWriting/#AmRevising: Search these hashtags for an instant community of folks who are pouring their blood, sweat and tears into their current work in progress (#WIP, btw). You'll find encouragement, solidarity, great quotes, and witty banter.
5) #PitchMadness, Pitchapalooza, #PitchWars: Each of these is an event that gives you an opportunity to have your work seen by an agent. Pitch Madness happens in February; writers submit a 35-word pitch for their novel, and agents fight over the best ones for a chance to read more from the author. Pitchapalooza is going on right now, and it's a NaNoWriMo-based event that can help you get some important feedback on your pitch. Pitch Wars happens in August, and mentors fight over which authors they get to mentor, to help you put together the best set of materials you can produce. In each case, a writing community springs up around the event to help one another produce the best work they can.
This is just the surface of the cool stuff you can find to help keep you writing out there on social media--there are thousands. Start following those hashtags and see where they lead you. Follow a few of the accounts, and twitter will suggest more--one is bound to suit your needs. And you can take advantage of it all from your couch, in your jammies.
You'll see me hanging out in these communities as @mishka824 on Twitter, Mishka824m on Pinterest (where I have my own writing board, of course!), and Michelle Chouinard on Google+.
Do you have any favorites virtual writing communties or secrets? Please share them with me!