Thursday, November 11, 2010

Being Mentored By Zane, Terry McMillan, Tananarive Due, And Many Others

My first attempt at a book in college

"Black Girls Rock... but what would rock even more is if I could surround myself with people that have the same passion as me. In fact I'm taking applications for a mentor. Who wants to mentor me? Must have a strong background dealing with literature, journalism, and a powerful love for writing."

Recently I put the above as a facebook status. After posting, I received some crazy replies. None of them were people who wanted to be my mentors. I laughed at their stupid comments, but was sad at the same time. However, recently I came to a new realization on who my mentor could be. 

I don't remember the first book I read, but I remember how the addiction started. Someone would hand me an interesting book and I'd read it until I was finished. Back then if I bought one R.L. Stine book it would get read in 2 days tops. Then I'd have to buy fifty more after that. I'd continue until I either had every book or had read every one of his books. 

Then it came to other authors. Sharon G. Flake made a hefty amount of money off of my parents. The authors behind the Babysitter's Club and the Addie books were geniuses. When I was old enough I  discovered the emotions of V.C. Andrews and the inspirations that Iyanla Vanzant had to offer. By high school I discovered that my parents were sheltering me from the juicy stuff when in one of my classes someone handed me a Zane Novel. That was my introduction to Sex Chronicles and my introduction to knowing that a movie didn't have to get purchased to get the visualization.

Within the last year these authors and more have made pages on facebook. I am facebook friends with Mary Monroe, Tananarive Due, Iyanla Vanzant, and many more who unintentionally (or maybe intentionally) give out advice every once in a while. I've joined fan pages of several authors, such as Terry McMillan, who always offer advice on how to create stories and get people to read those stories. I've paid so much attention to what all of these people have done and continue to do that it never hit me until now that they are my mentors. 

Sharon G. Flake was one of the first to mentor my passion. She showed me through her writing that a dream could change into reality. Tananarive Due unknowingly mentored me months ago when she visited Florida A&M University. I had the pleasure of listening to her powerful words of how she published her first book and went on to publish more books and achieve other goals. Zane mentored me by showing me that sex not only sells in the porn industry. Sex can turn non-readers into book store addicts. Iyanla Vanzant has mentored me by showing me how elegantly words can be put down on paper. She even makes sex sound elegant. Check out Best Black Women's Erotica and you'll see what I'm talking about. Every author I've ever paid attention to is a mentor of mine. They are living my dream. All I have to do is pay attention. 

Who's your mentor?

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