Thoughts on Mentoring

One of the authors who put on the West Texas Writers Academy is the New York Times and USAToday best-selling author, Jodi Thomas, who writes historical romance novels.  She’s written over 40 novels and was inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame.  So when she said I could take her to lunch one day, you better know that I was ultra-excited!  For a $20 meal at a little table in a Chinese food restaurant, I had an inspiring mentoring session with one of the best.

She instructed me on how to respond to the most common questions asked at speaking engagements.  Something I’d never thought about earlier.  I feel a little more prepared now for marketing my book and future books.

We talked about the different genres of books and how I should “pick a lane” to work in.  That’s a difficult thing for me because my stories cover a range of genres, but she provided me with some advice on how to deal with that.

Most of all, we talked about one of my book ideas that I’m planning to make into a trilogy.  She gave me some really good advice on how to move it along, spread it out over generations, and incorporate more characters.  Now my mind is whirling with possibilities and it’s breath-taking!  I can hardly wait to get started!

At the end of our time, I offered her a copy of my book and she said she was happy to take it to read on her way to New York next week.  Wow!  I’m proud of myself for controlling the urge to whoop out loud.  I’m so flattered by her taking it, but now I’m nervous about it.  I hope she likes it.  My fingers are crossed!

So thank you, Jodi Thomas, for your time and advice.  I’m so inspired by your mentoring that I want to work constantly until I get these ideas down and going.  Thanks for showing me that I’d been thinking too small and help me see the potential in how far I could go.  I hope someday I’ll be able to show you that I followed your advice.  Thanks for taking the time to help a novice.

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