But you aren't a published author yet. You're just wasting your time.
I laughed at myself. I've already done a classroom visit, I told my brain. On getting published.
Yes, you read that right. Janet Sumner Johnson, an unpublished author, has done a classroom visit on getting published.
I can hear your questions clammoring through the blogosphere, so I will answer them:
- Did you get paid? No.
- Did you claim to be an expert? No.
- Didn't the students question your authority? No.
- And why not? Because I did my homework. I knew what I was talking about, and most importantly I knew more than the students. ;) (And I brought my source reference with me and showed it to them.)
- How did you have the gall? Oh yeah, you in the back . . . I heard your question. I was asked, and I have a hard time saying 'no,' so I did it.
- But why? Why would they ask you of all people to do a classroom visit? Connections. Yep. It's all about connections. My dad is a teacher and likes to brag about me to all his acquaintances(*blushes at the thought*). When he told the writing teacher that I had just finished writing a book (the first draft, mind you), and was working to get it published (*blushes again at the thought*) she asked if I would present to her class on how to get published.
- Weren't you scared out of your mind? *wipes tears of laughter from my eyes* Scared doesn't even begin to describe it. But that made me prepare that much harder, and you know what? I'm really glad that I didn't let a little fear hold me back. It was a fabulous experience, and I learned tons, tons, tons more than any of those students did.
- So what is the point of your post? My point, dear friends, is that we sometimes hold ourselves back from doing things because we don't think we know enough. We don't think we're ready. We don't think we have the cred. There are so many excuses, really.
I know many of you could write a query with one arm tied behind your back (as long as it's not the one attached to your writing hand). Some of you can spew grammar rules like you study the Chicago every day. Some of you know the best way to pinpoint agents in your genre. It may sound basic, but it's knowledge hard-earned. Knowledge that others would love to gain.
Okay, I've said my say. But what do you think? Should pre-published authors look for opportunities to do classroom visits? Why or why not?