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Monday, May 31, 2010
Last week I went to a class on being a mentor teacher. I think we've all heard statistics about teacher retention- after 5 years of teaching, almost half of all teachers will leave their profession. Yowza.
Most jobs have some sort of mentorship program, the idea being that if a master helps out a newbie that newbie will learn more and stay in the position. Teaching kind of exists in a bubble- we go into our classrooms and do our thing, often going the whole day without speaking to another adult. It's important to have another teacher you know you can turn to for advice, someone with a whole lot more experience than you have.
But writing is done in an even tighter bubble. (At least until you give the MS to your agent or editor.) I think most of us have critique groups or beta readers, but having a mentor is a little different. I haven't heard of too many writers having an honest to goodness mentor- Meg Waite Clayton mentioned Brenda Rickman Vantrease as her mentor- both are now successful authors.
So now I'm curious. Do any of you have a mentor writer you can turn to for advice?
Image from Thinklings.