3 Ways to Pay It Forward in Your Creative Career

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” —John Wooden

id-100172390.jpgReview your journey in your creative career. Haven’t you received valuable nuggets from others who made a difference in your creative work? You’re thankful, but often repaying your benefactors is nearly impossible.

Then pay forward the help you received. You can help another struggling artist.

3 Ways to Pay It Forward

1. Tweets, posts, and links

id-10074109.jpgThis era of social media helps us pay forward what we’ve received.

In a tweet, a blog post, or other social media, we can share with others the nuggets that were so helpful to us.

Example: In an online course, I received a better understanding of writing in deep point of view. So, I shared what I learned in a recent blog post by sharing several of my homework examples. I directed people to the instructor’s website, her book on the subject, and her online course. Hopefully, several of my readers learned from my examples and were encouraged to buy the book or sign up for the instructor’s next class.

2. Reviews

When we like others’ work, taking the time to write honest online reviews is one of the best things we can do to help others’ in our field.


Example: An author invited others who enjoyed her book to join her promotion team. She said we could join her team for the purpose of learning how a promotion team works. I have a book coming out soon and wanted to learn how to implement such a team.

As I helped the author get the word out about her book, I learned much from her. She also took the time to promote several of my blog posts. On her team, I learned how to write reviews on Goodreads and Amazon. Now when I like a book, I promote it through writing honest reviews. Paying forward what the author did for me.

3. Mentors and teachers

id-10034692.jpgWhile I’ve grown in the craft of writing, I’m amazed at how many people have stepped up to help me. Mentoring others pays forward the help we receive from our mentors. Teaching classes or workshops, or simply sharing what we’ve learned with our critique groups pays it forward also.

Example: I moved into a small rural community. A woman in my new church gave me a newspaper clipping about a local writers’ group.

The president of the writers’ group is an editor for a small publishing company. She took me under her wing. She encourages me, alerts me to valuable writing information, sends me links to opportunities, and invites me to teach elements of the craft in our local group.

I’m happy to lead workshops to pay forward her help. I believe God used the woman in my church to provide me with this wonderful mentor.


  • You can pay forward the help you’ve received from others in your creative craft.
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How have you paid forward help you’ve received?

You Can Get Inside Your Character and Write in Deep Point of View

“Writers create narrative distance when they consciously or unconsciously insert an invisible narrator between the [point of view character] and the reader.” —Jill Elizabeth Nelson

Image courtesy of Victor Habbick at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Victor Habbick at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

You want your reader to connect with your main characters so deeply that your reader commits identity theft.

I took a class, Rivet Your Reader with Deep Point of View, by Jill Elizabeth Nelson. For her lessons, I recommend Jill’s next class at Savvy Authors or her book by the same title. If you’re like me, I learn from examples. So, here are my examples of writing in deep point of view.

8 Examples of Deep Point of View

1. Arthur’s breaths came in shallow spurts. So, this was the end. He’d be gone in minutes. Not so scary. Freeing. He’d be with Jesus before the first star twinkled.

Image courtesy of Bill Longshaw at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Bill Longshaw at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

2. Her stomach protesting with a hungry growl, she backed out of the driveway. Cake. Not just any cake, but German chocolate. And candy. Bowls of it. If only she’d stayed home and nursed her cold. Runny eyes and a stuffed nose she could handle, but cake and candy? Forget about it. Why had she promised Mark she’d lose ten pounds by their wedding, anyway? Just two more minutes and she’d be in the safety of her home. No sweets in home, sweet, home.

Image courtesy of Ambro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Ambro at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

3.  Rick raised the lid on the breadbox. Empty. He yanked open the refrigerator. It held a Sippy cup half full of juice and an unopened liter of diet orange soda. No milk. Would he and the kids outlive Lily’s depression? He grabbed his keys off the table and headed for the garage.

4. She rolled her eyes. He still hadn’t fixed the dryer. Or taken the unsightly wood at the side of the house to the dump. She’d grow a mustache before he got his broken-down Harley out of her parking space in the garage. So tomorrow he was going to power wash the house? In her dreams.

5. Amanda’s hands itched to wring the arrogant creep’s neck. She slammed the drawer. Too bad his fingers weren’t in the way.

Image courtesy of chanpipat at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of chanpipat at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

6. I scooted farther back into the space under the stairs. Would the masked man hear my heavy breathing? My heart pounding? What would he do if he found me? What could I do if he dragged me out of my dark hiding place? I clawed the floor around me for a weapon. My hand batted a stuffed animal, landed on some kind of ball, and grasped a… A Star Wars lightsaber? I clutched the plastic toy to my chest and prayed.

7. How could anyone take his rights as a father away from him? The so-called authorities could try, but by the time they reached his house, he and Andy would be long gone. Even if he had to punch Linda out to carry Andy to the car. Andy was as much his son as hers. She had no right to do this to him. No right. He wrenched the steering wheel and the car careened and squealed as he rounded the corner. Just let her get in his way. She wouldn’t be able to stand, much less stop him, after he got finished with her.

Image courtesy of nuttakit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of nuttakit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

8. David placed his hands on his hips and waited. Certainly Cindy would turn around. She couldn’t have passed him and not seen him. He was six-two and two hundred pounds, for Pete’s sake. She kept walking. He’d been snubbed. Royally. Who did she think she was, anyway? An insufferable brat, that’s who. She’d have to beg him on her knees before he ever spoke to her again.


  • You can take your reader deep into your main characters.
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Please join in and reply with your paragraph in deep point of view.