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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Do unto others . . .


Authors come in all sizes, shapes, and colors. We write tough, soft, humorous, horrifying, and thrilling. Our styles reach from lean prose to the profuse. Our voices strike all tones and notes. But the one thing we all have in common is the need for our work to be liked, enjoyed, praised, loved. It's no secret we can be a vulnerable lot often consumed with self-doubt and dread of failure. Oddly enough the main way those feelings can be disspelled is for strangers to exalt us.

The writing community is clique-ish. Like-minded souls bonding. Authors from certain publishing houses banding together. Lovers of genres forming groups to encourage and bolster one another.

Let's remember the need to extol the virtues of a favorite writer. Readers who don't write books - and some who do - can forget how much a simple word of praise for someone's novel can propel another reader to try it. A recommendation from a published author can go a long way in convincing a reader to pick up a copy from a writer with whom they're unfamiliar. And what it does for the author is immeasurable.

Established authors, don't forget how much you needed that special conformation that, yes, you were indeed a talented scribe. If you can, read one unpublished author's work a year just because. Hopefully, somebody gave you that time, that urging to continue.

Remember what you needed the most . . . and return it to another.

Nicole Petrino-Salter writes love stories with a passion.

                                              Raw, Romantic, Redemptive . . .



  1. Yes! Great reminder.

    And there are plenty of these authors in the CBA. Gina Holmes is one successful author who has helped me out a bunch. There are others. But we all need to remember to reach back to the guy who is a couple of steps behind us, no matter where we are on the journey.

  2. Sally and Jessica, thank you for your agreement.

  3. Thank you. Beautifully said, Nicole. I've experienced that "standing on the outskirts with my hand in the air, trying to be seen, or heard; acknowledged. It's a tough place to be.


  4. Love this post! I remember when I started out, I would've given anything to have a mentor who'd walked a few steps ahead of me. Now, I make every effort to help newbies with queries, proposals, etc. Why CAN'T we take time to help each other?

    That said, I still haven't arrived. I'm bolder about asking published writers for help, but I know how important a mentor could be (I really want Frank Peretti. Okay, daydream over). The questions just multiply the closer we get to publication...then after.

  5. Becky and Heather, we learn a lot of things - some of us the hard way (that would be me) - along the way on our own, but there's nothing like someone who "gets" you, who sees beyond the publishing dream(s) and likes who he/she sees. I had a published author go out of his way to help me, who still encourages me, who is a major blessing in my life, and who actually wasn't ashamed to blurb/endorse The Famous One. Amazing friend still. That said, we need to be that one for someone else regardless of our station in the long line of wannabes - as are you, Heather, from the sound of it. Becky, that place on the outskirts is where most of us reside, and only the Lord can move us into a different place, but it's good when He provides that special one - or ones - to give us encouragement, understanding, and whatever it is we need in the process. Special people do that for others.

  6. (And Heather, all I meant was you sounded like you were in the long line for the traditional publishing door to open. I didn't choose that route - which is why it's so amazing that the author I spoke of went out of his way to help me and endorse a vanity/self-published novel.)

  7. Excellent reminder, Nicole. Yes, those small encouragements matter. They can be so few and far between.

  8. I got what you were saying, Nicole, but thanks for clarifying. Yes, that is amazing that a pubbed author helped a vanity/self-pubber. I love it when people believe in your writing, no matter how "newbie" you are on this journey. Good writing is good writing, no matter which publication route it takes!


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