Mentoring vs. Editing…

A very good friend of mine, who has helped me with my work like only a good friend will (for free! LOL) has written her first draft of her first book, and she has graciously allowed me to read it and give my opinion.  I know what you are thinking:  Slippery Slope!  But not so.  Her book, so far, (and I am a slow reader) is a delightful read.  The characters are coming together in just the first few pages, and I can see a wonderful cohesion forming between them.  

Over the years, I have seen my own work evolve as I continue to learn “How To’s” in every aspect of writing a good novel.  I have promised to pass these things along to her and hope she will avoid some of the pitfalls early on.  If only I had known someone like me back in the day when I was writing my first draft…  Yep, that was a blatant pat on my own back, but I want to help her like Nomen helped me and think that somehow I’m gaining some brownie points in the karma department along with keeping a good friend on the right tract and mentoring her in how NOT to be me.  I don’t want her to waste as much time as I did, thinking I had everything right and then learning: NOT SO MUCH!!

But in all seriousness, I am honored and privileged to be able to get a real sneak preview of something which might just be the next best fantasy seller in the near future.  I wanted to write something encouraging for her and informational for others.

Find yourself a friend or friends, who will encourage you and help you with your dreams.  If they can do nothing other than read your work and say “I liked it!” or maybe even read it aloud to you over the phone, these are gems in their own right, hard to find and well worth the effort.  These kinds of friends are priceless, and remember, never reject any thoughts or suggestions out of hand because even the most hurtful opinions can be turned into useful tools with a little imagination and a lot of determination.  Think of yourself as a cactus in the desert, take advantage of every drop of rain and work toward the day when your efforts pay off in a glorious bloom.

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