Thursday, March 3, 2016

Virtually Friends

This has been an interesting past few weeks. I have met so many different people - most of them in my virtual world via online channels - which isn't a bad thing necessarily. These social network friends know that I'm there, and vice verse, but there is no pressure to make small talk. Just good people who are good to know.

Here's a rundown on some of them.


  • John Stanizzi - is an adjunct professor at Manchester Community College in Connecticut. He
    and I connected through the 30/30 poetry challenge. We supported one another when the words weren't coming easily. After the challenge was over, I felt compelled to send him my collection of poems from the month. He was grateful and then proceeded to send me his poetry collection titled "Hallelujah Time!" It's a nice collection built around Rastafarian philosophies, Bob Marley songs and their Biblical ties. A guy I wouldn't have met had I not gone outside my comfort zone and tried the challenge.

  • Brett Rawson - is a handwriting aficionado who developed a website dedicated to the art of the the (literally) written word. We met when I submitted a couple of poems to the collection. He then pointed me back to a photographer friend of his Matthew Van Biene  who is an adventurer who travels with a camera. He has some phenomenal photography on his website. I then followed up with Brett on another project that involves signature tattoos. He was so impressed with the images and the story behind the tattoos that he is putting together another piece in collaboration with my nephew and me. Cool people, cool projects.
  • Parker J. Cole
  • Parker J Cole - is a fellow eLectio author as well as a blog radio host for a show titled The Write Stuff. She interviewed me last week and while I felt like I knew her a bit before the interview, we had such a good time that I feel I know her much better now. There's even talk of another interview about Written Life at some point. 

  • Jendi Reiter - is a writer and poet and founder of the website Winning Writers. I met her today, actually. I inquired about getting listed on their Recommended Authors listing and after seeing some of my work she agreed to do it. Well, in looking at my website, she noticed my Tattooed Poet link and read it. She thought it was cool and then sent me her link. Turns out she was a tattooed poet as well. 

  • Carly Butler - is another handwriting fanatic, though her focus is letters. I met her through the mention of my wife's collection of love letters from me before we met. Like Brett, she put
    Carly Butler
    together a column using my story and pictures. It came out amazing and can be found here. She has a collection of letters of from her grandmother to her grandfather that were written during World War II. It is a story worth checking out and can be found here.

  • Random Fan - is a random guy I met at my Racine Yacht Club event a couple of months back. He emailed me to tell me he really enjoyed my book. He's been to the BWCA several times and could really relate to the book. I love these kind of random reviews. It makes it worthwhile.

These are just some of the beautiful, creative, supportive people I've run into in the past few weeks in my writing circles. The introvert in me loves that we're "virtually" friends, but the socialite in me loves the fact that we connected at all. I'd like to have coffee with each of them for an hour (well, maybe a beer with John) and hear more of their story. 

Because now, they've heard some of mine.

Blogging off...

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