Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pay It Forward

As I was chatting with a friend last weekend, she said "Pay it forward." I can't even remember what we were talking about (I'm sure it was uber-important), but I thought it fit in perfectly with the mantra posts I had planned for the week.

So I'm adding it as the fourth part of the mantra.
1. Work Hard
2. Don't Give Up
3. Finish Strong
4. Pay It Forward

Yeah, I saw the movie. Didn't think it was all that special. But the concept is. The idea that you should lend support and help to those around you, showing them what you've learned, teaching them what you know, is made of awesomeness.

It's something I've been trying to do with my critique buddies. The query letters I read for people. The writing advice I've been given from agents. What I've learned in books. All of it.

I'm trying to pay it forward, so the next person who comes along, has the benefit of knowing what I've spent the last two years learning.

What about you? Do you subscribe to this theory of paying it forward? Is it worthy to be the fourth part of the writing mantra?

30 comments:

Jessica said...

Absolutely! I strongly believe in sowing and reaping, and I also believe in helping others. So yeah, everything I learn I try to pass on. Plus, I'm super thankful to everyone else who has taught me or offered their time to me. It's definitely worthy. :-)

Corey Schwartz said...

Yes, absolutely. I am always willing to share what I know with newbies and to critique a PB manuscript for anyone who asks.

Mandy said...

This series of posts has been wonderful! And so true. Thanks Elana, for a dose of "cheerleading gold". ;)

Mim said...

I've really enjoyed these last four posts. I do believe it is important to pay it forward. I have every intention of doing that as soon as I can!

Paul West said...

It's like the saying, "What goes around comes around." I believe it. It may not be immediately evident, but in time it will prove itself.

quixotic said...

It's always good karma to help out others! Paying it forward is a great addition to that mantra.

Marybeth Poppins said...

I think it's a stellar idea. It's easy to get too wrapped up in what we do and to forget about our friends out there.

One of my favorite parts of your mantra yet!

~Jamie said...

I love the concept of paying it forward and try to do it as often as possible. I love repaying friends, but there's a small bit of joy in helping out someone who is just clueless about whatever and can benefit from what I know, can do, etc.

This is an important concept that I not only use in my writing, but try to teach the kiddo as well. It's one of my MOST favorite things to do.

Yaay for Paying it Forward!

Paul said...

Totally. That's a great way to be in this world!

Nicole_Hadaway said...

Great mantras and posts these past couple days, Elana, and this one most especially. I always believe that life is just better if we help each other out and do nice things for other people, just for the sake of being nice, because the positive energy it creates is so much more fulfilling than the negativity of "me for myself only".

Jen Chandler said...

I'm really enjoying these mantras. I need to write them down in big, bold marker and post them above my computer!

I totally agree with paying it forward. If we don't pass on what we've learned, how else will those who come behind us learn without the hard knocks?

By the way, I left an award for you over at my place. Much deserved, oh agented one :)

~Jen

Solvang Sherrie said...

I absolutely believe it paying it forward. What goes around comes around and the more love and joy you put out there, the more of it you get back.

ali said...

Absolutely 100% YES!

Terresa said...

Most definitely. It's what makes the world a better place (cheesy and cliche, but true).

The learners slowly become the mentors, and in that process, still learn, teach, grow. Eternally.

Carolyn V. said...

I find it's one thing for me to say it, another to do it. I say yes! Add it in. =)

Kristi said...

It's how I live my life - so a big yes from me :)

L.T. Elliot said...

Definitely. I think it's one of the most essential things. When another writer did something huge for me, I asked him what I could ever do to repay him and he said that exact thing: "Pay it forward. When you have the chance, and someday you will, do the same for another writer with promise."

And I will.

Cheree said...

Absolutely. I believe that you give what you get, so paying it forward is essential.

Liza said...

Yes, yes, yes! I have already learned so much from people who have taken the time to read me, and I can't think of anything better than doing that for someone else!

Lisa and Laura said...

We are huge proponents of paying it forward! In fact, we have an ElanaJ themed post going up on Saturday. We just love you that much.

Kat Harris said...

Most definitely!

And thank you for paying it forward.

Angela said...

My life Mantra is basically, 'Do well.' So if I can help someone, I do. I have learned so much from so many, so if I can do some small thing to pay it forward, I will.

christine said...

100% believe in paying it forward!!! great job on this.

Melanie Avila said...

Absolutely! I remember the specific conversation where I suddenly realized I was teaching someone else all the writing stuff I'd spent the previous two years learning. It was like an epiphany!

Of course I gave all sorts of disclaimers to the writer because I was nervous that she would swallow everything I said without questioning any of it, but I've since come to terms that I -- gasp! -- have actually absorbed some of this stuff.

Stephanie Jenkins said...

Great post! Paying it forward and helping others is so very important!

Jemi Fraser said...

Yes! I was nervous when I first joined an online writing group. I thought I was too "new" to offer advice. I soon realized it only works when we all contribute, all offer opinions.

I also follow this philosophy in the classroom :)

Aaron Polson said...

Of course. A little good karma helps all, just like a number have commented above. I've always preferred collaboration and sharing over "me-me-me".

Jean said...

I believe in paying it forward. Plus, putting it out there and helping others can teach you a lot about yourself, and your own abilities (strengths and weaknesses).

PJ Hoover said...

I loved the Pay it Forward concept. I have since I saw the movie. I always vow to do this more, and I'm working on it. It's like putting goodness out into the universe.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Absolutely!

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