On Tuesday nights, I participate in a writer's chat with some writers I met through Twitter. Its a great group of people and I consider myself lucky to have fallen in with them. It's great to be part of a group who gets the whole writing thing, a group of people who seem just as neurotic and just as unsure and just as motivated as I am.
Several weeks ago we talked about community: how to build one and what it means to be part of a community. And while I sat with these writers talking about this topic, I began to see how timely this topic is in my life right now.
Ive spent quite a few years building myself a community of like minded people in the city I live in. But recently I have lost part of that community. Someone has decided they have a problem with our friendship, and I am no longer allowed to communicate with one of my closest friends. I not only lost a cohort in crime but my creative sounding board and my go to person for business and work advice.
But while I've been wallowing for weeks in the loss, what I failed to see is that I have this new community I have slowly been building. A community of writers and creators who know how to support and communicate with each other across many miles. And what I've begun to wonder is, did this new community happen now because it was supposed to? Because I needed a new place to exist, a new group who would take me in for who I am no questions asked?
Maybe communities are meant to change and shift. Maybe as you outgrow parts of one community there will always be parts of other communities looking for new members. Members to share the wins and losses and struggles.
How do you define your community and how do you know when its time to let go?