It was crazy. One Stop Poetry was a “little blog” on Blogger. Four of us created this community. That then grew on Twitter. This group for poets, then writers and artists, got huge overnight. A team of 8 people (Adam Dustus, Pete Marshall, Brian Miller, Leslie Moon, Gay Cannon, Claudia Schoenfeld, Jessica Kristie, Chris Galford) who never met, got the notice in March 2011 – “You are going to New York. You are selected as one of the six finalists for the Twitter Shorty Award.” My heart soared, my stomach sank. It was too much to hope for considering we had just started in July. As I got out of the limo in Times Square, I saw the smiling faces of the people I considered friends and colleagues standing around dressed to the nines. I shook my head the illusion vanished, but i could feel the thousand or more were with us. I opened my eyes looking for Brian Miller and Adam Dustus wishing that Pete Marshall, our other founder, could have made it across the pond.
“It’s here. It’s now. I am really walking into the auditorium at Times Square.”
It’s not hard for me to imagine things, but this was one of those magical, real moments when they call your name and you’re actually awake. They were calling ours, “One Stop Poetry.” There was so much chaos they couldn’t get me to the front of the auditorium in time to join my friends and accept the award. It didn’t matter we (each member of the community) were (virtually) standing at the podium as a collective accepting the award.
We tweeted to our supporters “We Won the Twitter Shorty Award for Arts” That tweet circled the globe to poets, writers, and artists. Each of those folks were part of this. It was a moment to celebrate with them.
After the awards, I met some other entrepreneurial types who had worked hard to get recognized, and I met a few who obviously stood out in the celebrity arena. Today, I read the first tweets I sent after our name had been called and felt the same pride and excitement. One Stop Poetry had done what we had sought out to do which was creating a community and giving a voice to the poet/writer even if he or she was in the beginning stages of his/her writing journey.
To you who are waiting on the edge of your heels to find out who will be the recipient of tonight’s award – enjoy the moment and celebrate anticipation’s finest moment.
“And the winner is…”