Saturday, February 13, 2016

Celebrating Online Friends

Ruth Ayres has a link-up on weekends where people link to posts that are celebrations about their week. I love this reminder to celebrate every week.

There are so many people I've met online in the past few years who have enriched my life. It all started with Donalyn Miller. I read The Book Whisperer and found out about the reading challenge on Goodreads. I remember seeing the incredible number of books that John Schu was aiming for and thought he was quite ambitious whoever he was. Soon after, I started using twitter and followed Donalyn who led me to John and later Colby Sharp and many more #kidlit champions. I watched excitedly as #Nerdybookclub came into being. From there I made more and more connections and became brave enough share my blog and contribute to the Nerdybookclub blog too.

These are some of the amazing online friends I met up with in Chicago at ALA Midwinter last year.

Meeting so many people online who were wild about books was fabulous, but it got even better. Slowly, I started to meet some of them in person at different events. Another thing also began to happen. I started to find people who were also passionate about promoting kidlit that was more inclusive. I found Lee&Low Books and Stacy Whitman. One day they had a diverselit chat on Twitter and I met Audrey Gonzalez. That led to the founding of Rich in Color. We have a podcast that explains the beginnings of the blog if you want to know more details. From there, I began to make connections with more and more advocates for inclusive literature. This has brought about some wonderful friendships and I have learned so much from many of these amazing people like Debbie Reese, Edi Campbell, the We Need Diverse Books crew along with so many others. I can't even begin to name all of the people I've met on this journey.

There's another whole set of people I interact with around several weekly blog activities like Celebrate, Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge and It's Monday! What are you reading? I am so thankful that the Internet allows us to find the people who help us learn and grow and make us smile (I even have a Twitter list for smile makers).

Here is one of the things that made me smile this week:

It's a Valentine with a person message from librarian and online friend Angie Manfredi. What a great gift to open.


  1. What a wonderful celebration Crystal. We are so lucky to have the online world to connect with like minded people.

    1. And, I should add, people who teach and inspire us!

  2. What a wonderful celebration about your online friends!
    Sweet gift!

  3. I like hearing about your journey, Crystal of meeting so many online and then in person. It is something special isn't it? Happy Valentine's Day!

  4. Media has so expanded our horizons of people who we admire and aspire to be like. I love knowing there are many out there championing literacy.

  5. Happy Valentine's Day. Social media and the internet has opened the doors to a whole new world of friendship.