One person can make a difference—many will build a strong and thriving community. And one person can shatter a community, harming many and in some cases destroying the essence of their breaths, leaving their families and friends gasping.
Such a person surfaced Saturday a.m. shortly after midnight in a dark theater in the community that I live in—Aurora, Colorado—and what the media has labeled the Colorado Movie Massacre.
- It will fuel the news for weeks, maybe months. This one deranged person has changed the lives of countless—adults, kids, families, friends—the community of Aurora within the Metro Denver of Colorado, the state of Colorado—as well as the rest of the country forever.
- It has affected one of my client’s where one of her family member fights for his life in the ICU at University Hospital in Aurora.
- It has affected others because I have friends of friends who were there for a much anticipated evening—the summer movie event.
I was on the East Coast at a conference when it happened. Working late in my room on a manuscript for a client who was living for Africa in a few days, it was shortly after 2:00 a.m. my time. My cell phone’s screen lite up. Tweets, eMails and Facebook postings started coming in during those wee hours of the morning, “Are you ok?”
At first, I was amused—why was I getting these?—and then one came across that referred to a “shooting at movies.” That got my attention. What shooting? And what movie? I soon found out. It was until 9:00 a.m. that I could verify that my grandson was okay—he too had joined in with the many thousands who went to see Batman at the various movie complexes in our community.
Dear writers and authors,remember the power of your voices; the power of your words; the power of your opinions; and the power each of you have in helping others. We writers and authors must stay visible—to reach out to our communities when our voices and words can make the difference. Especially during crisis times.
Those who have the gift of writing healing words need to come forth—get them out there.
Those who have the gift of sharing the stories of those lost lives need to come forth—seek them and share with others the beauty of those who died; those who are recovering; and those who helped so many through the shocking late hours of the dark night.
Those who have the gift of sharing with others ways in which to advise many on how they can help hurting family, friends, neighbors and strangers—come forth with your ideas so that we in turn can domino them.
A year ago, two of my book shepherding clients created a beautiful book that I told everyone I knew that they should have on their book shelf. I gave it as gifts. It is the type of book that is perfect now for anyone living in Colorado—for anyone wanting to reach out to those who live in Colorado. When Crisis Strikes: What to Do, What to Say, How to Help by Allidah Hicks and Bonnie Kunti highlights hundreds of ideas on how anyone—from close loved ones to perfect strangers—can say, “I care, I’m thinking of you.”
A black cloud has once again enveloped the beautiful state of Colorado and a thriving city just outside of Denver. It has so much to enjoy and embrace. Please care with your words …
To support the care of many of the victims of the Colorado movie shooting, GivingFirst.org has the various groups listed, links and what they do. http://www.givingfirst.org
Judith Briles is the Authoring and Publishing Expert and known as The Book Shepherd. She’s the Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of Author U, a membership organization created for the serious author who wants to be seriously successful. She’s been writing about and conducting workshops on publishing since the 80s. She’s the author of 30 books including Show Me About Book Publishing, co-written with John Kremer and Rick Frishman and a speaker at publishing conferences. Her next audio and guidebook series, Author YOU: Creating Your Book and Author Platform will be available in the Fall of 2012. Join Judith live on Thursdays at 6 p.m. EST for Your Guide to Book publishing on the www.RockStarRadioNetwork.com. Follow @AuthorU and @MyBookShepherd on Twitter and do a “Like” at AuthorU and TheBookShepherd on Facebook. If you want to create a book that has no regrets, contact her at Judith@Briles.com.