Margaret Manning, this website’s founder, has noted recently that this is the 10th anniversary of Sixty and Me, but I don’t think enough fuss has been made of this wonderful fact.
We should be singing and celebrating loudly.
And congratulating her and the people behind the scenes who have kept us together for all these years.
And maybe feeding back a few thoughts in the process!
What Makes a Community?
By coincidence, I was thinking about the Sixty and Me community just one week ago.
I had been approached for an interview for a podcast to talk about my new book about how much I enjoy being old. We writers tend to welcome such opportunities, as it brings us to the attention of a new audience.
We did the interview and after the recording was finished, the podcaster (Deborah Voll) and I chatted. It turned out that she was also a writer for Sixty and Me! What a surprise. She had known this, it seems, but I didn’t. It immediately gave us something in common, like we were both part of something bigger.
Which we were.
And then I thought, Sixty and Me thinks of itself as a ‘community’, and I wondered how much readers had come to feel this to be the case.
I don’t know for certain what makes a community a community, but it must be something to do with feeling that you know and like the people involved.
This made me wonder how many of you have found friends through fellow readers of Sixty and Me. I see it sometimes in the comments, where two women find they have something unusual in common. There are discussions of contacting each other.
- Have you made online friends with people via Sixty and Me?
- Have you actually met these friends and continue to meet?
- Or do you feel you are in a community of like-minded people even though you haven’t met each other?
I then wondered whether you felt you knew the writers on Sixty and Me. When I read a newspaper, there are particular columnists I read on a regular basis and others I read from time to time. But sometimes, I just read an article for its subject matter no matter who is writing.
- Do you watch out for particular writers at Sixty and Me?
Being a community might also mean that there is a sense of communality between us, of shared experiences and interests.
We write about everything to do with life (makeup, travel, the joys of grandchildren and much, much more) and sometimes death (of our friends or thinking about our own).
We hope that these issues interest you, of course,
- Do you feel that Sixty and Me is a special place to find discussions of issues that concern you?
- If so, which topics do you keep an eagle eye out for?
I suspect time helps to build a community. Time to feel part of something bigger than you. Ten years is a long time in our lives.
- Have you belonged to Sixty and Me for a long time?
- Does anyone go back a full 10 years?
And time brings changes. Some months ago, I wrote an article about turning 80 and was surprised to find others of that age responding.
- How many of us 80-year-olds are out there?
- Is there anyone in their 90s?
Comments, Likes, Shares
And finally, a community is a matter of sharing with others. The site is well set up for comments, likes and shares.
You may not know this, but we writers give our time freely, for the pleasure of thinking it might help someone out there.
And we LOVE it when you comment. It makes us feel that you are really reading. I am equally happy when someone says how much they agree with what I write or when they want to argue. It’s always interesting to hear what you have to say.
- Do you contribute your own thoughts with a comment or like or share when you are taken by a particular idea?
If you are minded to answer any or all my questions, I would be happy to write an article pulling together your responses. It would be exceedingly interesting, but I need your input in order to do so.
Sixty and Me would certainly love to hear from you.
So, do you feel 60 & Me is your community? For how long have you belonged to it? Do you follow particular writers, or do you go by topics of interest? What else would you like to share?