Today’s blog will be relatively short. It’s not so much a missive, as a challenge for all of my readers.
Please follow me on Twitter, and “Like” the Facebook author page. Don’t forget to subscribe (the box is on the right side of the page) to be eligible for free e-books and other benefits! Oh yeah – grab a copy of Assault on Saint Agnes if you’re of a mind.
This past Saturday I taught a 5 hour seminar for young people – fourth grade through college – on creative writing. It was a labor of love, mainly because I’ve been sitting in other people’s classes for the last decade (roughly) and may have picked up a few things along the way. It seemed to me that I should return that favor, and help some new writers get their start.
For five hours I talked, listened, coached, ate burgers, and shared a brand-new room in my church with some of the most amazing writers I’ve ever met. I was the one who learned the most on Saturday.
I’ve worked a lot with children over the last two decades as Santa. But it is humbling to spend time intellectually with my betters, especially when I’m two feet taller, and forty years older, than most of them.
Each child had a gift. I asked for them to write a story at one point, gave them the topic and 20 minutes. They each developed a unique approach to the topic, hammered me with writing that was beautiful and elegant, and wowed me with the level of insight into the topic.
I’m thinking really hard about doing these workshops professionally for other civic groups. As in charging a fee. But I’ll need to up my game quite a bit to do so without guilt.
God blessed me with some skills. I returned a little bit to the community Saturday. And I found that we don’t have to worry about the next generation as much as we need to help them.
That’s my challenge to all of you: Take that special skill that God gave you, and teach it to someone else. Work with your church to teach writing. Or carpentry. Perhaps your amazing skills as a pastry chef. Or just give a class on basic auto mechanics to a bunch of youngsters getting their licenses. Save them from the blown engine, the flat tire, and the rip-off artist garage.
Do it for the right reasons. Volunteer now and again. Charge if there’s a market – but make sure that you do it with God’s work in mind. Give back before you close your fist over that pile of cash.
Next week I’m teaching the adults. I am giddy with anticipation to unlock the creative people who have been going to work as security officers, nurses, real estate agents, and attorneys. I know God’s going to bless me with another great group.
Take that as your challenge: get out and share your God-given gifts with another this week.
********* ********** *********** ***********
Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!
When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.