July 4th, 2009 is the 10 year anniversary of NetWits, this ragtag collection of humor writers formed by Keith MacDonald. What originally started out as the NetWits email group with a couple hundred writers and evangelists has grown — slowly, but surely — into a group that has launched two failed websites, a failed magazine, a once-only conference, and a poorly-attended social network.
God, I love this group!
The one thing that has always impressed me about my fellow NetWits is the energy and excitement we have about our writing and our craft. Whether it's sharing advice and feedback, congratulations and commiserations, or an almost-universal jealousy of the way Bruce Cameron turns anything he touches into gold, we have been drawn together. But if the rest of the group is anything like me, we will eagerly point to one of Bruce's books in the bookstore, his show on TV, or yet another appearance on Oprah, and shout, "Hey, I'm in the same writer's group as that guy," and try to give the impression that we're the second-funniest in the group, only behind Bruce.
Emotions run high in our group too, we've had our share of disagreements, flame wars, and vicious attacks. And while most of them have come about because we're passionate in our beliefs and ideas, a few of them happened because some of us are just assholes. I've been an administrator for a few years, and ever since joining, have only had to crack the administrator whip once. So I don't know if the relative calmness has been a result of people being intimidated by me, or if it's because I haven't been paying attention. (I'm going with the former. It's good to be feared.)
I am proud to be one of the first members of the NetWits organization (I joined in the 2nd round of invites, having stupidly ignored the first invitation I received), and appreciate everything K-Mac has done for us, and what each of you have done to help this organization grow and thrive.
Congratulations, NetWits, on 10 wonderful years. I'm looking forward to 10 more.
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