All writers, no matter where they are on their path, can use a little help. There’s so much you can do for your fellow writer friends.
- Beta read their manuscript for them. It always helps to get feedback on your story, to know what’s working and what can be tweaked to work better.
- Go out for a coffee with them to for some 3D mind-mapping. They can bounce their ideas off of you. Sometimes just saying them out loud changes the course of the idea excavating. By using you as a sounding board, they may be able to go deeper, realize ideas they might not have discovered had they been jotting them down instead. And coffee is always good.
- Help them with editing. No manuscript does not require editing. A writer doesn’t always see their own glitches. Your unbiased eye on their work could really help.
- Read their pitch/synopsis/query letter and give the valuable feedback that a second pair of eyes can give. Sometimes the pitch, synopsis/query letter is WAY harder than writing the entire manuscript. It often helps to get feedback on these prior to sending them out into the universe.
- Be their mentor, if they are just beginning or not as far along on their path. Share what you already learned, even if you learned it the hard way…by yourself. Think of the gifts you can give to those just starting out.
- Babysit their kids for an hour so they can have BIC time. Or two hours. Or three. I don’t think I even have to elaborate on this one.
- Give them your spare room for a couple of hours so they can escape ‘the house’. Sometimes the only thing causing writer’s block is the sink full of dishes out of the corner of your eye, or the knowledge that the vacuuming isn’t done yet. Escape from your own environment is often the only spark you need to get the creativity flowing.
- Tell them, “It’s okay. I understand.” Again, no elaboration needed here. Be, above all other things, a cheerleader for your writing friends.
I can go on, but I won’t. If you’re a writer, you probably thought, “I would love if someone did that one for me!” after most of those bullet points. If you find a writer buddy to share kindnesses like this with, it could be a mutually beneficial relationship that will go a long way in improving your day to day writing life. Always remember, we get back what we give. Your generosity can beget the generosity of others.
If you have writing friends (and I’m sure you do if you’re a writer), boost them. Support them however you can. Writing—‘they’ always say—is a solitary thing. We all write alone. But this does not mean we are required to be lonely. Find a partner, or two and three, and spread some joy. Reach out today.