O is for On a Side-Note
How to Ask For Help in A Way That Makes People Like You
Are you looking for someone to help you on your writing journey? There’s always someone ahead of us and always someone behind. Here are some do’s and do not’s.
REACH out and ask someone for help.
The worst she can say is, “no.”
OFFER to take him out for coffee, lunch, or dinner.
A meal is a great trade-off for his expertise.
RESPECT her time.
Remember writing may or may not be her full-time job. She may have a day job too. Or she may be on deadline.
READ something he’s written.
Best to read before you meet, but read after if you must, if you hope to continue your new friendship.
It shows you’ve taken time to invest in him the way you’re asking him to invest in you.
You may not like his writing style and asking him for help would just cause conflict.
FOLLOW up with a thank you.
It takes less than thirty seconds to shoot an email, text, or twitter but the gesture lasts for days.
POLITELY request a one-page critique.
Don’t send her twenty-seven pages to edit unless she volunteers. Use the time she’s already reserved for you to bring your page. In-person feedback is the best. You can read her body language and tone and discuss any questions you may have.
TURN around and share what you’ve learned with someone else.
FOR ADDITIONAL WRITING TIPS, SEE THE WRITING TIPS PAGE.
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