My relationship with the Internet has entered a more mature phase. The run-up to an orgasm is no longer noticeable when I hit the Enter key but there is still a sense of pleasure, a certain satisfaction that comes from knowing Google will answer all my questions, that Wikipedia is the reservoir of the obscure information I need to fill my flabby brain, that Dictionary.com will explain the meaning and Bartleby will quote me on it. And though I treasure my very own copy of the OED, those suckers are too heavy to schlep over to the coffeehouse. My sweet little computer weighs only a couple of pounds and travels so nicely in elegant satchel. It feels good slung over my shoulder.
So I go back often to my computer for all the information I need to impress my kids and make them believe that Mommy's knows everything. But I go for the camaraderie too. There are people in the pixels on my screen, wonderful people. These are people I love to talk to, laugh with, argue with and cry with. They are artists and writers, poets and pundits, icons and rebels all in the process of becoming something greater through their contact with all of us out here. I wanted to share some special gathering spots I've found in my keyboarding travels.
I can't recommend this writers' website highly enough. It was the brainchild of author Jenna Glatzer as a place for writers to congregate and discuss the craft in its various styles and genres. It has grown into a vibrant, exciting, authentic community through the efforts of so many people, but mostly Jenna and the website's new owner, Macallister Stone.
Absolute Write is also the adopted home of Uncle Jim. Uncle Jim is really James D. MacDonald who is really a successful science fiction writer who really has created the best seat-of-your-britches writing course on the Internet. He keeps it here for everyone to learn from, free of charge (well, I do still owe him a beer.) But be prepared for lots of work, tons of reading and BIC, BIC, BIC.
Macallister Stone, who owns and operates Absolute Write, also maintains a nice, quiet corner for readers. Every writer is first a reader and this is a great place to discuss the books and writers we love so much.
This is my new favorite place on the Internet. It's a fabulous clearinghouse for news articles, videos, book reviews, essays, quotations and blogs with a distinct literary flavor administered by William Haskins and Jamie Mason. Their voices are sharp, brilliant and definitely, habit-forming. I'm glad it's sugar-free and so is my BICed butt.
So although I'm less inclined to spent my precious hours thinking up bons mots for the spammers and head cases roaming free on the vast plains of cyberspace and I have cut myself off from all chat room channels (cold turkey, thank you very much), I still find the Internet to be a worthy destination. My secret lover has grown into a quirky old friend, one that knows everything and nothing at all, one that listens to my blatherings and blathers in his turn, one that is powered by words. yeah, it's quirky but still mad sexy, if you asked me.
And Ben and Matt, we'll always have Project Greenlight.