For someone who is pretty much a hermit, introvert, and basically an anti-social person, 'community', in the true sense of the word, makes me cringe. When I saw today's prompt I kind of dreaded the task of devising a response. But here's my attempt at the following challenge:
December 7 - Community. Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?
I actually started participating in the Facebook community during 2009 but I intentionally decided to expand my 'reach' during 2010. Facebook has been a savior of sorts to me. I have reconnected with some fantastic people from my past. People who I shared a lot of childhood memories and 'first' experiences have accepted my Facebook friendship. Some of these rekindled connections have been extremely positive and supportive. They have made me feel like I was a 'part of' something great. For a person who 'works' from home, a connection to the outside world is sometimes crucial for one's piece of mind. It breaks up the monotony and predictability of being a stay-at-home mom.
Yes, there have been some surprising 'de-friending' situations which do have me baffled and, yes, I did take this personally. There have also been some friendship requests initiated by me that are still out there in cyberspace, dangling on a leash, and waiting for acceptance. Yes, I still take it personally. But there are a few Facebook friends with whom I've shared quite a bit of my life and while they've retained my status as 'friend' (at least virtually) there has been no reciprocation of 'reaching out'. I mean a total dismissal of an e-mail with well-wishes. This pisses me off. Situations like this only reiterate the positives of being a recluse with limited friends. Basically, it lessens the probability of getting hurt.
Facebook has eaten up a lot of my precious time that I could spend blogging or writing my first novel. Specifically, I tend to procrastinate with the virtual games that offer the fake pleasures of: working my farm, clearing my frontier, honing my poker skills, and bejiggling the bejesus out of bejeweled blitz. This is stuff that is under my control, though. I can purposely change my behavior and schedule, with a little commitment on my part, and control the time I spend on Facebook. This is one of my goals for 2011: to adjust my time on Facebook doing frivolous, fun stuff.
I've enjoyed joining some groups and participating in writing challenges like Nanowrimo and #reverb10. During 2011, I hope to expand my horizons and concentrate on: following more blogs, writing more blogs, and reaching out to the writing community both virtually and within my region.