Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Share Your Knowledge

I know it seems like if you know how to do certain things well that you should keep that info to yourself, but truthfully that attitude doesn't really help anyone. If you keep the info to yourself - yes maybe in the short term it helps you, but by sharing and interacting with others you are more likely to have success and feel supported. In order to survive in the entertainment business especially you need to have a network or a community who is on your side. That's why being on tracking boards is great and networking with everyone you meet is so important. I spend lots of time writing this blog, so that it's helpful for all of you and answering lots of questions on various boards and I'm not being paid for it. I do it because I like sharing my knowledge and it's helping me to develop new connections that might lead to a new personal assistant gig or a writing gig. Here's a few people who share their expertise and insight for free that you should check out:

John August
is a terrific screenwriter (Big Fish, The Nines - which he also directed, Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, etc.), but he also has a great website where he shares info, answers questions, does contests and even does fantastic tutorials on things like Better Scene Openings and Writing Better Action. He's a person that could have chosen to just sit back and revel in his success, but instead spends some of his valuable time sharing and helping others who want to do what he does. He actively decided to do the opposite of what most would do and for that he should be applauded. He's also on Twitter if you want to follow him.

Lilit Marcus was once an assistant (now she's mostly a writer - Newsweek, New York Post, Brazen Careerist, etc.) that has a terrific blog called Save The Assistants. She shares all kinds of information about being an assistant, horror stories from her and others that will help you to laugh and release some of your stress, tips on what to do if you get laid off and more. She's another person who could just focus all her energy on her own job situation/writing career and keep all the info to herself, but instead she spends her time helping others be informed and enabling them to laugh at some of their crazy work situations, so that they don't have a breakdown. By the way if you want to follow her, she's also on Twitter.

Ted - I wrote about the Ted Conference here, so if you want more detailed info check that out. In simple terms, Ted is a very expensive conference that happens every year where some of the greatest minds in all fields get together and talk about the problems of the world, technology and just have a great time connecting with each other and sharing information. Chris Anderson (who isn't the original creator of Ted, but now owns it) decided a few years back to feature many of the talks that people give there online. I seriously could not contain my excitement when I found this out. In the older post, I talk about some of my favorites, so check it out or just go to the site to see what appeals to you. Sharing the talks from this ultra exclusive conference is the ultimate act of altruism. It doesn't really benefit Chris to have them free to view online. The conference certainly doesn't need publicity, as it is people fight tooth and nail to pay $4000 or so (I think) to go. I think he just decided it was better for the greater good and decided to share. I'm extremely grateful that's the kind of guy he is and I watch the talks all the time. No matter what field you're in, it's important to be informed and this is an easy way to do it.

So the next time that you don't want to share something you know or that you've just learned, think again about why. All of these people are successful and decided not to cling insecurely to their knowledge, but to share it with everyone.

1 comment:

  1. Very nice blog. And I will add, Chris Anderson can be followed on Twitter as well: @TEDchris - he's one of the few I check out every day!

    Thanks -- Colleen @Inner Decisions