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Monday, June 1, 2015

A Parade For Writers – Our True Heroes


Memorial Day Weekend consisted of what it usually does – trips to the beach and pool, BBQs in the backyard, road trips to see air shows, and a parade to honor those who served in the military.  I came across my town’s parade practice on the eve of their march and wondered why we don’t have a parade to honor authors.  We need our heroes and I can’t think of a better class of people than those who sacrifice daily (their time, their earning capacity, their ego) to create something that will impact others and have a lasting influence.

Some writers risk death – or their careers -- to say what’s on their mind, to expose a falsehood, to raise questions, and to help us see things differently, but most do not risk everything the way soldiers risk their lives.  But risking death alone doesn’t qualify someone as a hero.  Nor is risking one’s life the only qualifier for being a hero.  Writers dedicate themselves to honoring life by telling us what’s wrong with it, showing us how to make it better by seeing it differently.

It’s hard for me to see soldiers and not feel divided.  I’m against war but recognize those that fight to defend the United States are necessary for the country to survive.  But if there were no soldiers, there would be no wars.  Heroes to me are those who find a way to establish and maintain peace.  They are the ones who show us how to live without war, hatred, anger, and violence.

So imagine a parade filled with writers, editors, publishers, book promoters, printers, bookstores, librarians, literacy tutors, and First Amendment lawyers.  A march for free speech, free minds, free lives.  We don’t pay homage to our writing world and we should.

They’d march not with a uniform, but a pen or iPad.  No guns, no hats, no five-star generals.  Just ordinary people, the ones who shape the world by the words they write, edit, market, and share.  The streets would be packed, wall-to-wall with linguists and wordsmiths, writers and English professors, university presses and the Big Five, and people who tend to the stacks in libraries and bookstores.  We need to publicly praise the hundreds of thousands of writers that are published annually and the tens of thousands who work in the book industry.

Banners, books, and posters would color the stream of flowing creative talent, thickening the width of the streets that our smartest and most imaginative step through.  Old and young, the people who help us laugh, grow, and build, would come down the main street of every town, and be showered by applause, hooting, and hollering.  The diverse group of men and women would reflect the good wishes of onlookers with smiles and waves of the hand.  It would be a great day, one whose time is long overdue.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2015


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