Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Mid-Week Rude Awakening: Will You Be Missed When You're Gone?

This week's rude awakening doesn't just apply to writers, but to anyone who works in an organization (be it a volunteer or paying gig) with more than two other people.

We all have opinions, we all have ideas, and we don't always see eye-to-eye. Healthy debate is good for any organization or corporation. Some of the best ideas come from brainstorming in a friendly environment where diverse opinions get people thinking outside their comfort zones.

But what happens if you're on the losing end of the debate? Do you pick up your toys and go home? Sulk about the fact your voice wasn't heard? Do you become so steamed you quit?

Okay...first, deep breath. Let's analyze your position. Why would you quit? Have you lost the argument or have you lost your passion? The first is a matter of pride, the latter is a matter of the heart. The two are not synonymous and yet, many people allow their pride to dictate to them in matters of the heart. Be aware of what you're throwing away and why.

So, now, you've thought about it, and okay, it's pride that makes you want to quit, but really, how on earth can you continue to work with people who just don't respect your genius? And if they don't appreciate you, your passion is wasted on them. So it's a vicious circle.

Hey! I'm not here to judge. This is your choice. But let's go to the next step.

What do you think will happen when you quit? Have you made a difference to anyone at all? Were you involved in the daily goings on? Did you offer valuable input on a regular basis? What exactly will your former compatriots lose with your absence? More than a warm body? Did you contribute? Did you share? Did you offer your time, your assistance, yourself to these people?

Take a good look in the mirror and answer these questions honestly. Because if you didn't really contribute anything of value, if you didn't embrace the experience with that passion you claim you lost along the way, maybe you never had it to begin with. In which case, take your toys and go home. I doubt you'll be missed all that much. Spectators can always be replaced. Those we value are those who value us enough to work hard and make a difference.

Wherever you go, don't just leave a footprint. Leave an impression.

For tips on writing and fun articles, visit Gina's Articles For Writers page:

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Come Talk to Me (and maybe win a book!)

I'm over at the Avalon Authors blog today, talking about one of my favorite subjects: me! Stop by, leave a comment. I'm giving away one copy of each of my latest Avalon releases, Nobody's Darling and Nobody's Business.

For tips on writing and fun articles, visit Gina's Articles For Writers page:

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thoughts on a Wedding

Last night, I attended a wedding where I had no familial involvement. I wasn't a friend of the bride or groom: the groom actually works for my husband. As a student of body language and a writer by nature, this "third wall" gave me an opportunity to study the characters without allowing emotion to cloud my judgment. I'm happy to report that romance is alive and well (and apparently spending time in NJ right now)! How do I know?

For starters, when I spoke to the groom, he confided how wowed he was when the church doors opened and he spotted his bride. His face took on a glow, love shimmered in his eyes, and he told me, "She's the best thing that ever happened to me."

The bride's father toasted the couple with confirmation that they had found in each other the perfect partner, support system, and potential parent for their children. The best man (the groom's younger brother) assured the bride that her groom would take care of her and love her the way said groom had always loved and taken care of him. The maid of honor (the bride's sister) found a way to work in a toast from the bride's favorite television show and insisted that in the groom, she'd found the brother she'd never had and always wanted.

But the love in the air didn't just settle on the wedding's stars. Guests, too, showed how a wedding brings out the happiest in all of us. Couples obviously married for decades still smiled into each other's eyes as they danced. Soon-to-be parents sighed and reflected upon their wedding and the someday they'd be hosting a wedding for their as-yet-unborn child. Soon-to-be marrieds drank in each moment with excitement for their own special day.

Weddings are not all about the bride and groom, not about the gowns, not about the food or the band. Weddings are about love: no matter where it comes from, how long it's been around, and where in the journey a family stops to rejoice.

For tips on writing and fun articles, visit Gina's Articles For Writers page:

Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Five: First Five Pages of Nobody's Business

It's out! To celebrate the release of Book II of the Nobody Series, Nobody's Business, from Avalon Books, I'm allowing you a sneak peek into the first five pages of the book. Take a gander here. Enjoy!

For tips on writing and fun articles, visit Gina's Articles For Writers page:

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mid-Week Rude Awakening: R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Miss my little lectures? Sure, I thought you did. So did I. So welcome back to my soap box.

Respect. It's a lost art. The thing about that simple word is that, in order to get respect, you have to earn respect. How? By respecting yourself, respecting your work, and respecting others and their work.

Let's start with work. If you sign up to do a job, do it to the very best of your ability. If it gets too tough for you to handle, ask for help. Don't walk away halfway through. Don't stop communicating with people who are expecting results from you. Editors, agents, chapter members, coworkers, relatives, and friends will all understand if you suddenly find yourself in the weeds and admit to it. Not only will they understand, they might pitch in to dig you out! But if you simply quit with no explanation and walk away from your responsibilities, don't be surprised if those editors, agents, chapter members, coworkers, relatives, and friends lose respect for you. By quitting without communication, you've disrespected the work and those counting on you to do it.

Words are just as powerful as actions (or lack thereof). If you insult others, reveal someone else's personal information, or address others in a derogatory manner whether in person or online, you're showing a blatant disrespect to everyone around you. Healthy debate should never deteriorate into name-calling or bad manners. No matter who you are, how important you are in any business, or how successful you've been over the years, be gracious and respectful to others. It's called "professionalism." Learn it, live it.

Disrespect breeds disrespect. Respect earns respect. It's a two-way street, my friends.

For tips on writing and fun articles, visit Gina's Articles For Writers page: