WHAT FUELS YOUR FIRE? ONE ANSWER: KINDLING!
Author: Tom Blubaugh

By Whitney McKendree Moore

Image -What Fuels Fire

This happens to me constantly!

Working with Tom Blubaugh, Literary Strategist, opened my mind about marketing, which, until I met Tom, I had considered practically a swear word. It was Tom who first suggested to me that all marketing really means is reaching out to encourage others. And when I heard that, I thought, “I’m game.”

My new found willingness did not catapult me into any major forms of action — simply into sharing without any strings attached. As a writer, I have found that good reading makes for good writing. Beautiful bits are like kindling for my creativity — they can really get me fired up. So… I thought, why not share them?

I already had a sizable collection of quotes on file, so I ventured forth to share them via a group called Snippets That Inspire that I started recently on Goodreads. It’s offered as a safe place to share, and I think about three people on the planet seem to know that it even exists, but their various LIKES and RTs and pluses make posting there joyful.

In the days before I was reading on Kindle, I would be underlining and scribbling notes into empty margins and any blank pages that might be at the back of the book’s last signature. And it didn’t stop there. After finishing a book, I would sit at my computer and type each notation into a WORD document. Reading on Kindle has transformed that labor-intensive process into one that is utterly easy-peasy. With the click of a button, I can now transfer all the highlights and notes I made on Kindle directly into my computer. I store them in a folder called Replenishment. It’s a huge file now, so I’m simply sharing bits that have encouraged me, that have resonated with me, that have inspired me, that have sparked my flickers into flame. Sharing them feels like reaching out to encourage others, which, according to Tom Blubaugh, qualifies as marketing.

Here are a few examples of highlights I did not have to enter from scratch, or proofread — thanks to that fact that Kindle got invented:

  • Where are our dead? How can we visit them? Must they really be lost to us? If there is anything truly unknowable, it would seem to be this. And yet a substantial portion of the Shelf is set in the land of the dead. In The Frogs, Aristophanes sends Dionysus to Hades to retrieve Euripides and save Greek drama.
  • From Under a Wing by Reeve Lindbergh
    “Write it down!” our mother had told us whenever we said something that particularly interested or touched her: write down that sharp insight, that funny story, that especially appealing turn of phrase. She taught us that any experience worth living was worth writing about, but beyond this, she made us feel that the act of writing about it significantly affected the experience itself. I did not know whether writing enhanced an event, transforming it into something more important than it would have been had it gone unrecorded, or whether writing simply made it more real, like the testimony of an observant bystander who can confirm that Yes, something has indeed happened here: I am a witness, and this is what I saw.
  • From The Whole Five Feet by Christopher Beha
    That “a limit of time is fixed for thee” seems to be an overwhelming message of The Harvard Classics. In Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, there is a great deal on the idea that “a limit of time is fixed for thee, which if thou dost not use for clearing away the clouds from thy mind, it will go and thou wilt go, and it will never return…..” Marcus Aurelius seems to accept the fact in a rather large-hearted way: Lucilla saw Verus die, and then Lucilla died. Secunda saw Maximus die, and then Secundus died. Epitynchanus saw Diotimus die, and then Epitynchanus died. Antoninus saw Faustina die, and then Antoninus died. Such is everything.
  • Montaigne writes a great deal about the infirmity of the body and the prospect of mortality.” To philosophize,” he states with beautiful bluntness in the title of one essay, “is to learn how to die.”
  • Beha says, “For the first time in my life, I inhabited, from the inside out, the fact of my own mortality… The people I loved were going to suffer, and so was I. Then they would be gone, and eventually so would I. Reading these words that others had set down while they suffered and before they were gone made things easier for me. I thought: we are all retreating. I expected the idea to scare me, but it comforted me instead.”
  • From Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
    Without dignity, identity is erased. In its absence, men are defined not by themselves, but by their captors and the circumstances in which they are forced to live. Dignity is as essential to human life as water, food, and oxygen. The stubborn retention of it, even in the face of extreme physical hardship, can hold a man’s soul in his body long past the point at which the body should have surrendered it.

These are examples of excerpts that inspired me once and inspire me still. Here’s just one more, a quote from Byron that super-motivates me to keep on keeping on with my writing, with my posting, and with my marketing as defined by Tom:

But words are things, and a small drop of ink falling like dew upon a thought produces that which makes millions think (Byron).

Now that Kindle has eliminated all the back-end data entry, I am reading with an attitude of joyful participation I can underline as freely and as copiously as I want and easily preserve it all for future reference and inspiration. It is kindling for me — kindling from my Kindle! And now, via a safe place to share called Snippets That Inspire, I am able to offer it as kindling also for others.

I like Tom Blubaugh’s concept that marketing sometimes simply means reaching out to encourage others. Snippets That Inspire is neither laborious nor inconvenient, especially since I’m not trying to measure my performance or results. I’m just putting it out there, sharing what I’ve got. If this is marketing, I’m game.

BIO FOR WHITNEY MCKENDREE MOORE

1 Singing His Praises

SINGER, AUTHOR, RIB GROUP LEADER

(RECOVERY IN THE BIBLE)

I am interested in sharing simply and honestly within intimate settings. As a singer, I bring songs and prayerful encouragement into nursing homes, strolling from bedside to bedside with old-timey hymns that I call “HIMs.” Church for me is anyplace where two or three are gathered together under HIM, seeking knowledge of His will and the power to carry it out. I believe with all my heart that The Highest Power wants us to get real with HIM and with each other. To that end, RIB groups (Recovery in the Bible) are starting to sprout. These groups are TINY, offering “a buddy system” for women who are seeking closer relationship with (and through) HIM. RIB gatherings, like recovery meetings, are led by The Highest Power and not by we ourselves. We meet to share honestly about our trials, and we are accountable to one another according to the WORD. When I’m not attending a RIB group, I’m either writing a book for Amazon or helping someone else bring forth a book of their own. Recently, I posted two original songs onto soundcloud.com and hope to share the rest of them (38 more) as a songbook called Sing Hallelujah!

Links for Whitney McKendree Moore:

I hope you learn solid principles to help you on your journey of success—whatever success means to you.

Change something today to make your tomorrow better.

Tom Blubaugh
Literary Strategist, LLC
TomBlubaugh.net
tom@tomblubaugh.net
417-812-6110

2 Comments

  1. Margaret

    Love the post!Especially the the pieces you have borrowed from different authors and used as inspiration. I say borrowed since we truly do not own our thoughts, our characters do:}

    Reply
    • Whitney Moore

      Thank you, Margaret — it is encouraging indeed to hear from the receiving end. God bless as I dash out the door (late as usual) to sing (as usual) — very grateful for your being there and for Tom who posted this in the first place.

      Reply

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