Let us assume, if we may, that there are two people.
- Dennis, who loves to bake. As a matter of fact, Dennis loves to bake so much that he’s invested a lot of time and money into cookbooks, training, materials, and equipment. He prefers to bake desserts, and he is particularly fond of muffins.
- Tanya, who also loves to bake. She loves the smell and delightfully messy alchemy of it all, but really only bakes once a year, at Christmastime. She has her family recipe for blueberry muffins and brings them to the family get-togethers every year.
It would be WRONG if Dennis told Tanya that she should stop baking if she’s not going to take it seriously. (see my previous post for more on this)
It would be WRONG of Tanya to compare her muffins to Dennis’s muffins and decide to stop baking blueberry muffins.
It would be WRONG of Dennis to bring blueberry muffins to the same family get-together in the hopes of showing her up and stealing some of her thunder.
It would be WRONG of Dennis to NOT bake blueberry muffins, simply because Tanya might be hurt if his turned out better. He loves baking muffins.
It would be WRONG for Tanya to decide she wanted to learn how to bake better, and therefore Dennis needed to teach her everything, and give her all of his tools to use, and be available at her beck and call.
It would be WRONG for Tanya to give Dennis some of each batch of her baking, expecting that he would eat and comment and critique her methods for all of them.
It would NOT be wrong for Dennis to tell Tanya she needed to learn on her own, with her own journey. Any assistance he gives her would be awfully nice, though.
It would NOT be wrong for Tanya to happily continue to make and enjoy her family recipe for blueberry muffins once a year. She’s still a baker, even if she doesn’t know how to frost a wedding cake.
Quick note — nothing that has happened recently has prompted this series of posts. They came out of a random discussion with a friend and should not be taken as a passive-aggressive jab at anyone.
They’re merely reminders to be conscious of your actions … both to yourself, and to your friends and resources.
You’re all very smart people. I’ll bet you can draw your own parallels between the simple baking-related examples above to writing.
I have deliberately left out several WRONGS from the above list (and I didn’t add any RIGHTS because they tend to stem from the WRONGS). What would be some WRONGS that you would add to the baking example? Or maybe some RIGHTS or additional NOT WRONGS?