Trying to catch up on so many things, but I wanted to stop and give a shout out to several people I've met on the road lately, people who are ready to take the next step in their writing career.
In St Louis there was a man who drove the National Car Rental bus and shared with me his desire to write a book. In his face I could see a dream and it was beautiful.
Then in the trade show booth next to me in Orlando, I shared the premise of my manuscript with a wonderful lady who brought me to tears with the story of her sister's abuse by an uncle. She said she had felt so helpless, even though she had only found out about it years after it had happened. She wants to read the book when I finish edits. I was very moved by how the subject of my book had affected her.
Today on my way here to California, I sat next to a veteran who got choked up when I read him one of my favorite writings, called Passage. It's the story of a soldier I saw taken from a plane in a coffin.
Last week in Alaska, I went into a section of the convention that had different crafts from Alaskans. There in a corner was an old man with a stack of books in front of him. When I approached him, he smiled so brightly I just had to stop. I picked up his book and realized he was one of our nation's last living Code Talkers, one of the bi-lingual Navajo Indians recruited by the US Marine Corps in World Two to transmit secret tactical messages. Code talkers transmitted these messages over military telephone or radio communications nets using formal or informally developed codes built upon their native languages. Their service was very valuable because it enhanced the communications security of vital front line operations during World War II.(Info from Wikipedia)
I thumbed through the book, put it down and then left. Just outside the door I realized that I might be walking away from history and worse yet, a fellow writer, without offering some form of support. About two years earlier I had been in Alburqueque and book a book that I had signed by seven Code Talkers, so I knew the value of preserving this history.
I walked back in, bought the book and had the man autograph it for me. Just $15.00. The old man shook my hand so many times my arm almost fell off. He smiled widely again as I left as I stopped once more to thank him for his service. He was weeping.
I just don't know what my purpose here on earth is, but somehow, some way God is allowing me to use this writing thing as a way to encourage others.
As a writer we are never alone. There are thousands of people that have a dream of writing something. They just need a little encouragement.
I have seen so many of my new writing friends offering advice, patting me on the back and networking to help me find my way. Most writers have people in their lives like I do that offer that word of encouragement, or want to read our writings. Maybe it's time to pass their generosity on to someone else.