Image found on Salvation Army website
First, I'd like to apologize for not blogging on schedule on Friday: packing the toddler for a 6-hr train ride to Philly was more time-consuming than expected. What's that? You say you don't care, you spent your Friday blog-reading time just staring at Wednesday's eye candy? Oh. Well, in that case, you're welcome.
So, today I wanted to talk about connections. As Jackson Pearce says about 3 minutes into her lovely video Everybody's Free (To Buy A Laser Printer), in which 28 YA Authors give you advice on writing, publishing, and everything in-between... in song:
Reach out. Find people who want to help you, and people who you want to help.
Mostly, I wanted to remind the beginning/unagented/unpublished writers out there that, even if you feel like a newbie, I promise you have something wonderful to offer someone else. I know people who don't give back, not because they're selfish, but because they don't think they have anything to offer. YOU DO. Don't ever think that you're not experienced enough to help or connect with others.
Maybe you're the perfect crit partner for someone more experienced because you "get" what they're trying to achieve with their current WIP, and so your first-reader impressions are exactly what they need to hear.
Maybe you found some really cool online resources for newbies that other newbies need to know about.
Heck, maybe your day job is postal worker, and there's a writer out there who desperately needs to know what those extra four digits in the zip codes are all about.
Tomorrow, I'm meeting up with some people to chat about one of the jobs I used to do. And then on Wednesday, I'm hoping to meet with a much more experienced writer and teacher to pick his brain about the kind of writing I hope to do in the future. One day, I'll be the "expert." The other, I'll be the newbie, and I plan to have an absolute blast both days.
And here's the thing: I kind of forgot that people might want to hear about the things I used to do until I got an email from the students I'm meeting tomorrow. I'm glad they wrote to me. I'm glad they reminded me that I have experience and stories to share that might have value to other people. So, now I'm reminding you. Go out and be generous with what you know.
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED FROM OTHERS? WHAT HAVE YOU SHARED?