The purpose of the program is to match young writers (ages 13-22) with experienced mentors. The mentor and mentee communicate by email. The mentee sets his/her own goals (such as “improve character development” or “learn revision skills”), and the mentor offers guidance and suggestions. The mentorship length varies from six weeks to several months.
I’ve worked with several different mentees, and I’ve got to say–it’s wonderfully rewarding. I learn almost as much as they do. When I explain things like how to increase tension, motivate characters, and find the heart of a story, I think more clearly about my own habits and methods. Sometimes I make new discoveries about my own work in the process.
And, of course, I’m helping young writers improve their craft and develop business skills. It’s a great feeling.
Absynthe Muse is currently seeking mentors–particularly sf/f writers (hint hint). If anyone’s interested in trying it, visit their site for instructions and an application.