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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Our Neighbors

Our Neighbors

Good morning, afternoon or evening depending on the time zone.

A few weeks ago I ran into one of my neighbors Kevin. We were discussing then normal issues, weather, taxes, political guffaws and the sort. I could tell Kevin had something more important on his mind, but since I didn't know what it was, we continued with the small talk. We moved on to work related items. He was currently unemployed. He was an OTR. For those who don't know, that's an over the road trucker. Work had been a little slow and he was tired of watching yell and white lines dance in front of the windshield. He had applied for a couple of local jobs at the Opera and sound studios. See, Kevin is an artist at heart. He spent years working on his music and running sound gigs. As he describe some of his past gigs I quietly interrupted. "Hey Kevin, why don't you write a book." His look was of confusion. "Where would I start? What do I write? Who would read it?" I think at one time or the other we've all asked the same questions. My answer. "At the beginning. Start at the beginning." He assured me if he got serious about it, he'd give he a shout for direction and motivation.

Yesterday I ran into Kevin again. Asked him if he'd heard back from the Opera or sound stage. Said he hadn't heard a word, but his fingers were still crossed. Then he hit me with, "Guess what? I took your advice, sat down last night and started writing. I was only going to spend about thirty minutes. Instead I found out I had been hammering on the keyboard for over two-and-half hours. I was shocked." The only advice I gave him was since it's an autobiography of his tales on the road and the shows he worked, be honest. Don't make yourself look like the good guy all time. If you do, readers will question the sincerity and depth of the author. He agreed and scurried back to his house.

Let me tell you something, that gave me a great feeling. Will I make any money of of this? No. Will I be credited with a blooming career? No. I will have the satisfaction of knowing I helped a neighbor in a small way launch a new career. I reflected back to the days I was coaching baseball. I never worried about the win loss record. I concentrated on the boys/girls learning how to properly play the game. If I knew they learned the fundamentals, the W's would follow them through life. I got the same feeling with Kevin.

I will help him and answer any and all questions he may have as he ventures into this new and exciting arena. Isn't that what neighbors are for?


  1. Sounds like you gave your neighbor some inspiring advice. Hope it encourages others to write from the heart. The next step of course is to get it proofread. :)

    1. He's got a way to go, but at least he started. Time will tell. This could be interesting.

  2. Jeff, in this respect, you are so much like me. I enjoy helping others. I've hosted interviews and written several book reviews - after taking the time to read each title, which is no small feat in some cases.

    Yes, I could be using that time to work on my own titles. I might have an additional 2 or 3 titles available for sale if I avoided the writings others have published - but what would I think of myself? I'd feel like a hypocrite, hoping others would buy and read my books while not giving theirs the time of day. Furthermore, I enjoy giving and, the more I give, the more joy my soul receives.

    Of course, if I was to attain the status of NYT BSA, I might not have as much time to read and review but, by gosh, I'd still need to read and would still review the books I enjoyed, the same as I do now, just not at the same pace.

    Let me know how Kevin does with writing. If the time should come that he needs an editor or book review, be sure to let me know.

    Meanwhile, keep doing what you're doing - giving of yourself to others so that you both may be blessed.


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