I have sold Into The Fire to a number of people. Many of them I know. A few I don’t. But I would never have gotten to where I am without the friends I have. I have friends who encouraged me. I have friends who inspired me. I have friends who bought the book. I have friends who have promoted the book to others. I have friends who edited for me (at less than the going rate). I have friends I didn’t even know I had.
I have done promotions on facebook. I have done promotions by pushing ads. I have friends who have given advice about other ways to promote, and other avenues to pursue (without even knowing they have done so). I will likely do more promotions in various ways. But friends who buy, sight unseen, are amazing. They sustain my confidence in making a go of this. I am sure I will gain new “friends” from the sales. They will see something they like in what I do, in the stories told, and share with their friends, and those will become new friends.
I am amazed by the human capacity for goodness, sharing, and help. We have so many differences between us, and hard times can produce both so much good and so much evil. But, in the end, people will surprise you. Someone you think shares none of your values will aid you in ways you cannot imagine, but desperately need. Though we can see darkness ahead of us, and believe there is only a bleak horizon, people will always surmount our expectations. Did you know, we live in the safest, and best, of times in all of human history? Check it out. Look at the numbers of death from murder, persecution, whatever measure you choose, and see where we are historically speaking, and tell me I am a liar. I dare you.
Are any of you fans of Star Trek (in any of its incarnations)? Gene Roddenberry had the right of it. We move, steadily, if not consistently, to a brighter future. We have much literature today that shows a dystopian future. But, look at the actual numbers. Look at the numbers for violent crime. Look at the numbers for infant mortality. Look at the numbers for death in childbirth. Are they up or down over time?
And socially, are we more accepting, or more rejecting? How many times have you seen lesbian/gay relationships on television over the past five years? How many times in the twenty years before that? What do those numbers tell you? Do we live in the best of all possible times? Maybe.
Our relationships with one another, and our willingness to talk, hear, and relate are central to those changes (or so I believe). We, together, can do things that we, divided, cannot. Benjamin Franklin (surely you know who he is) stated it as “We must, indeed, all hang together, or most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.” A clear indication of where human strength resides.
Never neglect the power of friends.