I’ve heard the expression: “It takes a village to raise a child.” This isn’t entirely correct. Children are raised every day by single parents or a set of parents with no external support. Some of those children turn out fine, and some children who grow up with a huge support network have major issues. While the adage isn’t totally correct in all instances, I believe it is a good concept. Basically, we all need help at some point or another to succeed.
But when should we ask for help?
For me, the “It takes a Village” concept is hard to put into practice because it appears to be in direct opposition to another important concept: the Work Ethic.
Work Ethic: a belief in work as a moral good: a set of values centered on the importance of doing work and reflected especially in a desire or determination to work hard.
While the definition of Work Ethic does not say “do it alone,” it does imply a person should work hard as a moral obligation. The way many of us interpret the idea of Work Ethic is that if only I work harder, I can attain my goal. I do believe this can be the case in many instances, but there are times when hard work alone will not get you there. Sometimes you need help. Unfortunately, a person with a strong work ethic equates asking for help as weakness.
Asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
I’ve seen this expression thrown around by people who advocate for the “It takes a Village” concept. It doesn’t quite ring true for me. In order to ask for help, you must first recognize your weakness, acknowledge it, and then seek help to overcome it. Because of this, I prefer the following quote:
Be strong enough to stand alone, smart enough to know when you need help, and brave enough to ask for it.
I have a hard time asking for help, because of that Work Ethic thing (Yes, I will drive around the block as many times as it takes before I’ll ask for directions, but that’s a different issue). I do normally recognize when I need help, but I get stuck in that “if I only work harder” line of thinking.
Writing is one of those areas where you can’t do it alone. Of course, you can sit alone at your desk or in a coffee shop to write, but you cannot learn to write a great novel alone. It takes the help of fellow writers either through critique partners or some similar means.
I’ve recently come to realize that I cannot promote my books alone either. Yes, I can hire someone to run a blog tour, and give away free books, but that only goes so far. In order to truly promote my writing, It Takes a Village.
So this is my request. If I am to reach my goal and make writing a full-time adventure, I need your help.
Friends, neighbors, and (dare I hope) fans, if you haven’t yet purchased any of my books you can find them here.
Hey, I’m a bit on the frugal side. If you’re anything like me, you probably wait for the sale before you buy. Well, it just so happens that I have a 5-day promotion on Amazon starting on April 15th. The Order of the Wolf will be Free, Stenson Blues on sale for .99, and The Eastern Factor for 1.99.
If you are one of the few who has bought a book of mine or the not so few who have received a free copy, please leave me a review on Amazon or Goodreads. (or anywhere else where I can find it) Reviews are worth more than gold in the writing world.
If you are looking to join a village, you can join my newsletter mailing list here.
Also, my next book, Half-hand will be published in time for Christmas and I am currently seeking Beta Readers. You can sign up here.
Writing is my passion, if reading is yours, give my books a try.