Success in the connected world today will always be largely dependent upon community-- the people, and groups of like minds, around us that churn on and chirp about anything and everything imaginable! I've not yet achieved any level of notable success, but these are the specific people to whom I will inevitably credit it, and the arenas in which you can find them.
I'm a writer first, so that particular community plays a big role for me. But I'm an entrepreneur too, and an intellectual and social commentator (and probably a closeted stand-up comedian)... so I draw on a few different social arenas for reciprocal love and inspiration.
Joanna Penn is a writer's writer. Having clawed her way into a successful literary career, she is an active proponent of the self-publishing movement sweeping the world. And, although I haven't published a book yet or reached out to Joanna in any way, HER BOOKS and HER WEBSITE have already been, and will continue to be, a gigantic help.
Richard Moore is an absolute stalwart in the startup world-- like his own entrepreneurial think tank... seriously. An intelligent mind with a frank and fluid teaching style, Richard has been a catalyst for a positive mental shift in my life-- an attitude adjustment, so to speak. If you want to know exactly what I'm talking about, check out his Entrepreneur Business Club, his weekly Q&A videos-- Monday mornings at 8am EST-- and the courses he designed, all of which can be accessed from HIS WEBSITE.
Quentin Allums is the main voice and vision of something called The Misfits, an online community of passionate entrepreneurs and storytellers. It is an infectious place, and I'm sure I can credit it with my late entrepreneurial drive-- my second wind, so to speak. It really is an amazing community... check out the House of Misfits FACEBOOK GROUP to get a taste of the magic. And Quentin's co-founded company, URBAN MISFIT VENTURES, an innovative branding and events outfit, perfectly reflects this positive Misfit attitude.
Karthik Rajan was one of the first people to reach out to me in a substantive way here online. I edited and re-packaged one of his early articles, unsolicited, and he responded by arranging a phone call that touched my heart. He is such a kind and thoughtful person, and I will be forever grateful for his encouragement. A self-proclaimed "geek with social skills", Karthik is an analytical thinker and a contributing writer for HUFFINGTON POST and FORBES. He has also built a formidable following on LINKEDIN, where I first met him. We haven't worked together yet, but it's only a matter of time.
Eleanor Goold is a talented and accomplished copywriter, and a community builder. Despite my lack of copywriting experience, she has always made me feel welcome and relevant. If you follow Eleanor on her FACEBOOK GROUP or on LINKEDIN, it doesn't take long to get a sense of her love for the written word... and her enthusiasm is infectious. Her popular podcast and content creation courses can be found on her business website, KREATIV COPYWRITING. And her book, "Learning How to Swim", is now available ON AMAZON.
Joe Rogan is just sheer awesome-sauce with a slick studio. That's all... I don't know him and I have in no way communicated with him. But I thoroughly enjoy his gig-- his raison d'être-- in the online head space. He's a curious, intelligent individual with an edge (and a set of balls)! He will talk to absolutely anyone interesting without losing the integrity of his platform, and... well, that tends to produce some pretty fuckin' interesting dialogues. If you have any sense of self-worth, you'll check out everything Joe Rogan does at HIS WEBSITE.
Richard Moore, as described above, has built a strong online community around his startup commentary and business. His groups have been essential to my growth as an entrepreneur, and I highly recommend them to anyone who is interested in developing their business acumen. Check out his free ENTREPRENEUR BUSINESS GROUP, and his premium ENTREPRENEUR BUSINESS CLUB.
Quentin Allums (and his motley crew of Misfits), as I detailed in his section above, has lit a fire under my ass. This is a passionate, talented group of the most amazing people... and it's always growing. If you want to be inspired to network and grow your business, join The House of Misfits FACEBOOK GROUP now.
I have been stacking up a bit of a portfolio on Medium-- an interactive blogging community, where I'm a paid member-- and it's become one of my favourite places to read and meet interesting people. If you're an avid reader and/or writer, you really should make it a part of your creative regimen. Member writers get paid based on claps from readers, but you don't need to pay to join. To find out more, check it out RIGHT HERE!
And if you decide to start producing content on the Medium platform (a wise move), then there are a few Facebook communities in which you will absolutely want to become involved... My two favourites are the GROW YOUR BLOG MOVEMENT and MEDIUM SUPERHEROES. They are full of writers who are committed to supporting each other's work. So if you're serious about succeeding, give your content the boost it deserves!
While I'm on the subject of Medium, I should mention that becoming a contributing writer for popular Medium publications is another very smart move if you want to be successful. There are thousands of them, so choose the ones that are right for your style and subject matter. A few of the bigger pubs that have been kind enough to include me are: P.S. I LOVE YOU, THE WEEKLY KNOB, PUBLISHOUS, CROSSIN(G)ENRES, BETTER HUMANS and THE WRITING COOPERATIVE.
And being published in more traditional venues is important too, as it lends a little more mainstream credibililty to your portfolio. There are two traditional publications to which I am a subscriber-- and soon to be a contributor.
ONE STORY is a short story publisher based in New York State, and the recent recipient of a Firecracker Award for Excellence in the Magazines category! Their contributing writers are also regular winners of various literary awards. They are the real deal, publishing high-quality stories, and I always look forward to getting the current edition in the mail.
CARVE MAGAZINE, named in honour of Raymond Carver, is a publisher of "honest fiction". Their quarterly online and print editions feature a wide range of writing-- fiction, non-fiction and poetry-- which shines a light on real life and the human experience. Their annual Raymond Carver Short Story Contest, now almost two decades old, has become one of the most respected fiction contests in the world. Carve has become one of my favourite magazines... and subscribers, like myself, can submit their work at no charge!
- P.S. I Love You
- Writing Coop
- Better Humans
- One Story
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Don't just follow in a straight line though (that's almost always a foolish move). Get lost for a spell... Find your own favourite content, and then hold it and love it (like there's nobody looking). Just read quality writing, period.