We've had lots of guests over the last couple of weeks staying in our home but just a few days ago I got an precious opportunity to browse in our local Waterstones bookshop.
After searching the shelves for some of my favourite titles and authors I spotted a gentleman with a small table of books at the front of the shop. He was totally blind and partially deaf and had displayed on the table in front of him a number of his travel books for signing. I could have felt sorry for him because of his disabilities and might have bought a book from him for that reason but I didn't. What really caught my attention was the fact that he was standing there trying to promote his book in a very busy shop and no one was even stopping to look. That is the very worst experience for any writer and as a fellow hopeful novel writer I knew at that moment I just had to buy his book. That could have been me a few years down the line. Okay, it mightn't be a great book, it might be really boring but it's the principle that's important. If we don't help fellow writers by buying their books - online or at the bookshop - or follow their blogs or their Facebook or Twitter messages, then why should we expect others to do that for us? As writers, the biblical principle of 'doing unto others as we expect them to do unto us' is a great principle to follow not just in hope of good sales but much more in just showing a little humanity and love.