Reply To: Writing Mentor

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Brian Stansell


Hi Natalie,

I think a lot of us here are sort of co-mentoring in a way, rather than serving as a dedicated mentor.  Seems like that sort of thing might best be done by seeking a published author who writes the kinds of stories you wish to write or has been around a while and knows something more experiential about the business.  There are a few “published” authors in the forum, but I suspect they are self-published rather than traditionally published.  I think most of the traditionally published authors seek a more professional mentorship relationship to supplement their writing income, so I am thinking it is a paid gig.  Many of the article writers here on Story Embers and the Staff – (See the Meet the Team page) are, in fact, published authors and may offer these professional services on their own personal Author sites.  Click on the highlighted link of one of their names to learn more about them.

In the forums, we are more like peer encouragers.  Some of us have more experience and some are newer at it.  Some have particular strengths in their crafts, and some of us, like me, need a little help in particular areas.
Observe the interactions between members.  Browse and peruse conversations and samples of their writing when they put in a piece of it.  We all have more to learn. Sometimes the best learning comes from “the doing” and then putting something out there to share for input.
I know Rose (@rose-colored-fancy) has a particular skill for the nuances of characters and can describe a very fluid scene.  It all depends on what aspect of writing you are wanting to work on and hone.  Sometimes the biggest hurdle we must jump over is our own self-critic.  I think we creatives, almost as a rule, always judge ourselves too harshly and may often crumble up a piece of our work that may actually have had a lot of promise and potential.
I have been writing for several years but have only now started to pursue publication.  I could probably tell you a lot about what not to do, rather than what to do, so I think you need a more positive mentor that could bring the experience you need.  My experience is merely academic, but you need practical experience.  I need a mentor myself.  I do have a younger friend who has published 5 books and counting and she owns her own imprint.  Her name is Lindsey Backen and if you just take the space out between her first and last name and end it with a “.com” you’ll have her website.  She does teach some on SkillShare and is putting together a writing curriculum.  I spoke to her about you to get permission to reference her and she said if you wanted to reach out to her, she would be more than happy to speak with you, if you are interested.

One thing that might help, when you start a topic, is to grab a list of people’s tags, to ensure someone will be able to see the new post for your topic.
The best thing that has worked is to look under the Forum dropdown menu at the top of your screen and go under recent activity.  See who is active on the site.  Pick about 5-15 tags and list them in your new topic post to see who will bite.
I wish just starting a new topic alone alerted all of the active members, but it doesn’t.  Let me know if I can be of further help to you.  We all sort of help each other here.

Brian Stansell (aka O'Brian of the Surface World)
I was born in war.
Fighting from my first breath.

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