Disclaimer: Before getting into this post, I want to note that this isn’t encouragement to make friends with just anybody online. Please use your better judgement, be safe and always err on the side of caution.
Also! I was recently interviewed by NFREADS! You can check that out here!
When you reach my age and the days of high school/university are long behind you, you start to doubt whether you’ll ever make new friends again. You crave the company of like-minded people but struggle to find them. It may seem odd but if people can fall in love via dating websites/apps, then surely lifelong friendships can also be made online? I’m here to tell you, they can. Not only that, the friendships you have the possibility of forming with people from all over the world are just as legitimate as the pals you grew up with.
In 2020 – the loneliest time in everybody’s lives – I met some of the best people in the universe. I decided to start a horror themed bookclub on Instagram. You can read all about it here. I nearly scrapped the idea at the last minute but if I had, my life would have been very different. I have a regular Instagram account: my_bookish_universe, which has been active since 2018 but wasn’t attracting as much attention as I had hoped. I wonder now if that was because I was keeping a big part of myself out of it – my love for horror. When I launched my bookclub page, I found a community that instantly made me feel right at home. None of us cared about the perfect, aesthetic photo or showing only the best parts of our lives. We were united by our love of all things spooky. We just wanted to talk about horror books, films, games and more. It was so refreshing. Cut to today, where my page has grown faster than my regular account with not only followers but bonafide friends. I’ve made pals with people from the US, UK, Europe, South America and more. They are all wonderfully unique, kind and caring individuals that I hold dear. I hope to meet many of them in person one day. I trust them. I love them. I am beyond grateful that I met them.
The best part about social media is the connection. I love to read and there are entire communities on blogs, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for those just like me. It has never been easier to find your tribe. If you’re able to do safely, you can host meet-ups, which I have attended in the past for vegans. You can join groups, Zoom, make YouTube videos, collabs or TikToks together. There are endless options. I would definitely advise talking face-to-face several times before deciding to meet in person. You always want to make sure you’re not being cat-fished or scammed in any way. I know a lot of people who met through YouTube or other social media platforms and are still best friends to this day. It’s possible!
Finally, I want to shout out my people. The ones I don’t go a day without talking to. I love them dearly!
– Caleb from @the_bookeyman. Caleb asked if he could join my bookclub last year and we’ve been BFF’s ever since. His fiancee has a close friend here in Melbourne, so once international travel is possible again, they want to visit so we can all finally meet up. He’s a hilarious actor from Chicago who loves all things spooky. He also hosts a non-fiction horror bookclub. You’ve gotta check out his account!
– Windy from @whatwanderingwindyreads. Windy is such an amazing woman! She spends her days travelling around America with her husband in a van. We created the #maydays2021challenge together which you can check out on both our accounts. I adore her.
– Marcus from @marcushawke. Marcus is my best pal from Canada. He wrote The Miracle Sin which I reviewed here. I also interviewed him, which you can check out here. He never fails to make me laugh and provides plenty of encouragement. He’s become friends with Caleb through our connection and I love them both like brothers.
– Lisa from @lisas_bookshelf. Lisa is the sweetest person. She’s from Sweden and we also met through my bookclub. We enjoy discussing our daughters who are of similar age and buddy reading books when we can. I am such a fan of hers!
– Delaney from @delaneyreadsbooks. Delaney is another friend from Chicago who I met through Caleb. I enjoy watching them bicker like siblings. She has such similar reading tastes to mine and takes excellent photographs. You can’t help but love her infectious smile and kind nature.
There are more but these are my main peeps who I interact with regularly. Let me know about your experience meeting and making friends online. I hope this inspires you to put yourself out there (albeit safely) and form lifelong friendships with like-minded people. Thanks for reading!
Peace & Love xoxo