John Donne wrote,
“No man is an island Entire of itself. Every man is a piece of the continent, A part of the main.”
This statement is nowhere more true than in the life of a writer.
Writers are reputed to be loners, and that often is true. We do our best work alone. After all, we need solitude to think, to research, to compose, and to edit and revise and rewrite. We tend to be introverts, shying away from all crowds and most social engagements.
We need others to help us discover the right sources of information.
We need others to help us make our writing understandable, accurate, and unambiguous. We need others to read, edit, and critique what we write. We need their suggestions.
We need others to help us market our work once it’s completed.
The reality is that we can’t do any of it without the help of others. A whole team of others.
I’ve had several such teams. Not only are they numerous but also the membership of those teams is constantly changing. One of the most important team members is always my wife. She reads (or I read to her) everything I write, and she let’s me know about anything that doesn’t “click” with her as a typical reader. She’s not shy about pointing out such things, and that’s what makes her a valuable–no, an indispensable–team member.
Then there have been a plethora of formal editors. The first was Paul Poirot of the Foundation for Economic Education, who accepted and published the first article I ever submitted to any publication. There was Mary Guy. And there have been a host of others. They all helped me improve my writing.
And I’ve had numerous people who helped market my work, not the least of which did so by spreading the word of its existence. After all, word of mouth is the best form of advertising.
We all need teams of helpers. Even Christ had helpers. For example, He had the apostles and 70 other disciples, “advance men,” who went ahead of Him to make preparations for His preaching-and-teaching ministry. (See Luke 10:1.) Rather than shy from those who can help us, we writers should embrace them wholeheartedly as team members.
To all my current team members, thank you! Working together, each doing his or her best at the various tasks, we will all be successful. And may the Lord bless the results of our efforts as He sees fit.