Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Yesterday morning, walking to work at my parttime job (I have a 2+ block hike from my car to my building downtown) I heard shouts. Male shouts, and many of them.
"Great," I thought. "A riot."
But thankfully, no. (and yes we've had them before so don't just think I'm paranoid lol) It was a group of bicyclers. They were riding in formation, and judging by the calls of the man in the front and his obvious leadership position, it was some type of training class. Most of the guys were in their 30's and had on shirts that boasted either Police or Fire Department, which was interesting. They were all taking turns riding in different positions, and as the traffic changed and they paused at redlights (they were beside me for awhile, remember - 2 block hike) they would make different calls that would be passed down the line to the last rider, regarding cars in which lane, or "clear", etc.
I found it fascinating, even though I still am not entirely sure what they were doing or why. But it was a great example of teamwork. From the confidence of the bike leader to the very last rider on wobbly wheels (yes, I almost reached over to steady him more than once! Poor guy!) they had a mission and a purpose and they were all working together to accomplish it.
Writing might seem like a solitary act, but it takes a team. Think about it. While most writers tend to be introverted, they still crave the friendship and understanding that comes from other writers. Nothing can replace that. And when it comes to the actual act of publishing, it definitely takes a team - the writer, possibly an agent, the acquisitions editor, the copy editor or line editor, the marketing department, the art department, etc. Then it takes a team to sell books - your friends and family, your writers group, word of mouth among peers.
Teamwork is crucial to almost everything that's important in life. Think about it - raising kids ideally takes the team of a husband and wife. Our jobs/career take teamwork to produce a product or sell a product or maintain a business. Our spiritual walk even takes a team - you, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, not to mention the fellowship and encouragement received at church and the teaching from our pastor or sunday school leaders.
Why should writing - our goal, our ministry, our dream - be any different?
Just like the wobbly guy at the end of the line, we need support to do our best work. To remain motivated to stay the course. To improve in our craft and get better with each block. Each traffic signal. Each deadline. Each rejection letter.
So take a minute today to encourage a fellow writer. To holler back to the end of the line "You're doing great! Keep it steady!" Or even just call to the leader at the front of the line - "HELP!" Veteran writers (or in this example, riders) should have no qualms about offering advice and instruction to new riders (writers). We've all been that wobbly guy in the back, and should be eager to help strengthen and advise.
How can you bless a fellow author today?