Good morning authors and welcome to the middle of the week! Today we are kicking off another writing resources post. Now, one of the great things about the author community is the myriad of opportunities out there to help writers hone their talent, tighten their stories, and have a guiding hand within the community itself. For those seeking traditional publishing and smaller publishing houses, putting your best manuscript forward is vital and a mentorship program might be just the thing to help you do so.
What is a Mentorship Program?
Most mentorship programs feature a one to one pairing between a newbie author with an author that has industry experience in some form or another. A lot of mentors come from indie and trad backgrounds, bringing their knowledge of the publishing industry and own writing expertise to the table. Pairs aren't signed at random. Mentorship programs feature an application process and if chosen, it is because your potential mentor loved the story and wants to work with you. A mentorship is more than beta reading or editorial advice. Mentors can provide a range of things from helping you craft a submission package to offering insight to the current querying climate. They may also help fix major glitches in plot structure or improve a weak point within the manuscript. As with all revisions, their editing suggestions are something to take into consideration but it is ultimately the authors discretion if certain changes improve the overall manuscript. Most mentors vibe pretty well with their selected mentees, and their revision suggestions are generally on point. The end goal of most mentorship programs is to either have a query ready manuscript or a showcase for authors with a line up of agents and publishers to look over their submission packaged and revised piece. Not every piece is selected from these showcases, but the take away from any mentorship program is improvement of craft and a better handle on the process of querying.
5 Mentorship Programs to Watch For
There are several mentorship programs out there. Some cater to specific genres or platforms. The five programs listed below have pretty open parameters for age range & genre, catering from Middle Grade to Adult manuscripts across the genre spectrum.
Pitch Wars might be the biggest and well known of the mentorships. Established in 2012, Pitch Wars has a dedicated website, complete with links to current mentors and their wish-lists, past mentee successes, resources & more. Definitely one to keep an eye on with the submission window opening in the next month or so.
Write Mentor is an seasoned and still expanding program that provides several different kinds of mentorships through their website year round, and includes a larger summer mentorship program & agent showcase. Founded on the principal of making writing more accessible & affordable, Write Mentor is definitely one to watch for both established & new authors.
Revise & Resub Pit also known as #RevPit was a twitter pitch contest that emerged from the flock in 2017 cofounded by a group of editors who offered their time & expertise to help authors prepare for the querying minefield. #RevPit hold several mini critique contests throughout the year with a larger annual contest in the spring.
Author Mentor Match began as more of a MG & YA mentorship program, pairing experienced authors with newbies, but has since expanded to include Adult in their seventh round. The last round of submissions opened early 2021 so keep your eyes peeled for round 9 of this mentorship program hopefully coming soon.
This one is an outlier... for now. One I felt deserved a spot on this list. Write Hive does not yet have a set mentorship program but editors in residence often act as mentors, answering questions and working with writers behind the scenes. Write Hive offers an array of writing classes, virtual writing retreats, online conferences with a slew of industry experts & insight, artist sponsorships and more. Could a full mentorship program be in the works? We know they'll be great if they do, but until then, a definite one to watch & check out.