In many of my blog posts, I tend to tell stories about professional athletes or sporting events and incorporate an inspirational message.
I don’t always do this, but if you have read my pieces, a majority of them are related to sports.
Throughout my Twitter posts, you will find encouraging quotes from the late and great college basketball coach John Wooden.
“Whatever you do in life, surround yourself with smart people who’ll argue with you.”
That’s one of my favorites because it sends a clear message. If you run with those who always tell you how wonderful you are, then you will get nowhere fast.
But when you are challenged and your motives are questioned by real friends, it might bring you down to reality which might lead you to make better decisions.
Coach Wooden also said …
“If you are not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything. I’m positive that a doer makes mistakes.”
If this is true, then I must be a doer because I certainly make more than my share of screw ups.
Fortunately, I have a group of friends who hold me accountable and help me along the way.
But to be effective in sports, you must be a team player.
Larry Bird was one of the greatest players in the NBA, but he needed 11 other players on the team to win three championships.
Derek Jeter was a magnificent shortstop for the Yankees, but he could not win a World Series ring — five in all — without the other members of the roster.
Over the past two years, I have been a member of a club of phenomenal writers and friends who have allowed me to play a starting role.
Last year at the Book Expo America, Angie and I just took it all in and didn’t know where to start at the show in the Big Apple.
This year was different.
At this year’s event, I had a book signing appearance lined up for me by New Hope Publishers for Dugout Devotions: Inspirational Hits from MLB’s Best.
Since this is not a Christian book show, I was a little apprehensive if there would be a decent turnout of people wanting my work.
But my team came through for me in a big way.
The day before my scheduled signing, we all helped our friend Victoria Duerstock at her book signing for Heart and Home: Design Basics for Your Soul and Living Space. She enjoyed a wonderful turnout.
Our Serious Writer team made sure people on the floor knew about her book signing at the Abingdon Press booth.
Then it was Michelle Medlock Adams’ turn to ink her name on her book, Dinosaur Devotions: 75 Dino Discoveries, Bible Truths, Fun Facts and More. People flocked to the Harper Collins booth to get a signed copy.
Once again, we all hit the floor and let everyone know about the event.
We all had fun walking up to people and telling them about each book and guiding them over to the table before they knew what hit them.
That’s what a team does. The members support each other.
The next day, it was my turn, and I didn’t know what to expect.
I had completed a book signing in Pittsburgh three weeks earlier with a celebrity, which made it a bit easier. Clint Hurdle, manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates, drew a large crowd.
But he wasn’t with me in New York. However, my team was in the dugout ready to come to the plate.
I was led from the Green Room to my table assignment at the appointed time. My name is not well-known, and I hoped a few people would show up so I wouldn’t be embarrassed.
But my team stepped up and smacked it out of the park by pitching my book to many attendees.
When it was over, I had signed nearly 90 copies in one hour. I glanced back a few times and saw the line full of people who were holding copies of my book.
A huge thank you goes out to Angie, Cyle, Bethany, Michelle, Victoria, Patty, and Nakia.
They made my first Book Expo America book signing a great success.
The next day, the team was back at it and helped Michelle at the Hachette booth with her children’s book, What is America? She ran out of books in no time.
A team is a group of organized people who work together for a common goal. A total team effort is the cooperative performance by the sort to reach the objective. A good team player does not seek to be a one-man show or gain the glory but promotes cooperation and togetherness.
Jealousy does not exist on a solid team. Neither does selfishness. They all work for the same result – victory.
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow, but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, for he hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat; but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him, and a threefold old is not quickly broken. (Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12 KJV)
That verse sums it up well. We all worked as a team and prevailed together.
We all had a wonderful time at Book Expo America in New York City, and I am thankful to be part of the fantastic Serious Writer Club.
How can you help someone? Would you give of yourself in order that your co-worker or partner could have success?
What does sacrifice mean to you?
Del Duduit is an award-winning writer and author who lives in Lucasville, Ohio with his wife, Angie. They attend Rubyville Community Church. Follow his blog at delduduit.com/blog and his Twitter @delduduit. He is represented by Cyle Young of Hartline Literary Agency.
His first book — BUCKEYE BELIEVER - 40 Days of Devotions for The Ohio State Faithful —can be purchased on Amazon.