Mentors can, directly or indirectly, impact a person’s life and leave a trail blazed with support and encouragement. Mentors have a nurturing way of challenging you, guiding you, encouraging you and helping you develop to your full potential.
Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction. ~John C. Crosby
I’ve been blessed to be mentored and guided by some great people – directly and indirectly – in various times and areas of my life. Whether it’s been in my pursuit of my writing passion or my love of running, these people have made an impact in my life. Today, I want to express my joy, appreciation and sincere gratitude for some great individuals.
In my pursuit of becoming a writer: Rhonda McKnight
Reading books on writing and the works of authors in various genres, are methods an aspiring author utilize to study the craft of writing. I became a reading machine for a period of time. From 7pm until I would fall asleep, I was reading every night. [Note: I have boxes of books and have considered holding my own “blow out book sale” or donate to a women’s shelter.] I was reading every book I could find especially books written by African-American writers, specifically Atlanta based writers.
I don’t recall when I connected with Rhonda but I do recall it was through Facebook. The initial “mentoring” occurred via Facebook for a couple of months and transitioned to email. I believe it was probably five months later that I officially met my writing mentor Rhonda; it was at the Faith & Fiction Retreat conference in 2009. Before I had even met Rhonda, she talked about her path in becoming an author, shared writing resources and encouraged me to “put pen to paper”. This was all before she physically met me! Because of her passion and love for writing, it naturally flows from her and she loves to share that passion with others. Rhonda, thank you for EVERYTHING… You have been a blessing to me!
Greatness is not found in possessions, power, position or prestige. It is discovered in goodness, humility, service & character. ~William Arthur Ward
The big brother of “get’er done” encouragement: Booker T. Mattison
It’s apparent that I meet my mentors through the Faith & Fiction Retreat connection. My most recent mentor – who does more “thought provoking” kick in the butt type of encouragement – was the facilitator for the screenwriter’s class at the writer’s conference. He holds double-mentoring duties – novel writing and screenwriting – and I hope to soak up all the knowledge he’ll be willing to share on both subjects [hint, hint]. Thank you Booker for making sure I stay focused and committed to writing.
My other mentors are not only inspirations but also friends to me. Fran – as known as BossyGirl1980 – was one of first running buddies when I joined a running group. Running was not the only connection between us; we discovered we share the connection of writing. Fran was the one who encouraged me to start a blog and helped me with the editing of my book proposal. I am amazed by her “blogger hustle” and all that she does to pursue her passion and purpose. Fran, thank you my friend for encouraging me.
Tes Sobomehin, the bonafide RunningNerds founder, is my non-writing mentor; she’s my fierce and fabulous running mentor and the ambassador of giving. You want to witness someone with passion, purpose and sheer love of bringing the best out of people? You have to witness Tes in her element of health, fitness and running. Five minutes around Tes and you’ll feel like you can conquer the world! Tes, for all you do and who you are… thank you!
We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. ~Winston Churchill
We all have the power to impact someone’s life and, inadvertently, serve as a mentor. Always be mindful of those who are keeping watch on you; you may be the mentor they are seeking out. Be open to share, support, dare, encourage, comfort, guide and give a kick in the butt when necessary.
Fight. Finish. Faith. (2 Timothy 4:7 NKJV)