Saturday, May 2, 2015

Pay It Forward vs. Entitlement

Editor Kitteh is judging you. Judge, judge, judge.
If you read Secrets of a Snarky Writer or my blog on paying it forward, you know that I feel rather strongly that authors have to help each other. For the most part, out of all the jobs I've ever had, the writing world is by far the most helpful universe and is filled with folks more than happy to give you a little bump when it is needed.

Share this post, please? Why, sure. I'll share your post. Best of luck on future sales!

Retweet this post about my new release, please? No problem, friend. Retweeted. Have a great Tuesday.

Can I be on your blog for a day to reveal my cover/tell the world about my new release? Yup, yes you can. I'm happy to do so, just email me the stuff and tell me the date you want!

But then the water gets murky.

"Could you please write a blurb for the front of my book?"


If I have time to read your book and I enjoy it, I'm happy to provide an endorsement using my author name and brand to give you a bit of a bumpdraft. BUT, if the author you contact doesn't have the time or isn't allowed to do so for whatever reason, the response should never be,

"Well, you're a self-important jerkface!"

I've seen/heard/experienced this one a couple too many times not to make some kind of comment here, so bear with me. At the end of the day, yes, it is wonderful to help out other writers. Yes, we are the only ones who understand the unique hell of being in the middle of writing a book and feeling like we're a hack.

Yes, we're the only ones who understand what it is like to shove your baby book out of the nest with the hope it will fly like an eagle and not flop like dropped bologna.  


But we are NOT unique in being busy or having work of our own to do.

Every single job out there is shared by other people. You don't hear teachers saying, "Well, we teachers need to support each other!"

You know why? Because teachers aren't temperamental artists, stomping their feet and feeling like no one is listening. Yet writers behave this way ALL THE TIME. Like it is perfectly okay to do this, even if logic suggests it is so not okay.

If you're going to go out on a limb and ask someone for help/support, you have to understand that the other person could and might say no. They might explain why they said no. They might not. We're all grown up enough to be graceful and move on with business, right?

Wrong. Some folks attack the other person for that negative response, sometimes by simply telling them off in a message or email and others by publicly attacking the other person's work (via reviews or other possibly damaging acts.)

Seriously, this is a thing. Why are we doing this thing?

So here is my call to action stop doing that.

When someone else succeeds, instead of doing mean girl backbiting, give them a little round of applause. When someone else says they are busy, nod and say, "Well thanks anyway, friend." When someone just says no, thank them for taking the time to respond.

If you're going to be in business, drop the entitled attitude and realize that, although sometimes it feels like it, the world does not revolve around you.

We all have to do it. We all have someone who is too busy/too important/unable to help out when we ask. The part that is memorable is when we bow out gracefully instead of staging a war.

Happy Writing!
mama virg