Wednesday, May 12, 2010

If you could have anyone as a mentor, who?

Angie here:
Mentors are very special people. They teach us personal growth, professional growth, and skills. I realized that I didn't have just one mentor, but many, a host. I am so grateful that these people took the time out of their lives to enrich mine. I wonder: What can I do to show how much I appreciate them?

People like Margie Lawson, Randy Ingermanson, Janice Thompson, and Cec Murphy have gone over and above any expectation I could ever have for spending time and energy to build me up and help me grow. Others like Margaret Daley, Tamela Hancock-Murray, Julie Cowan, Sunni Jeffers, Pam Morris, and Clare Wood have either read or been a major support system to me in this journey. Dear friends like Missy Tippens, Jennifer Hudson-Taylor, Mindy Obenhaus, Lindi Peterson, Christy LaShae Smith, my Finish-the-Book looper buddies spur me on daily running the course toward the finish line. I've completed 3 books publishing this year and next, 2 more working on for next year, 2 more in development-- because of the people in my life, not because I just write.

There are so many others that I'd be writing names of people I feel gratitude and love toward that I could fill our blog with posts every day for a year.

Sometimes I get the opportunity to do something nice for them, sometimes I only have the opportunity to say thank you, but I am always feeling the effect of my mentors and friends. When it is my turn to stand before God and give my accounting, I will not be able to say I did any of this on my own. There will be a host of mentors and friends standing with me for all the good things I supposedly achieved--it wasn't me--it was them.

I will be praising God for the love He showed me through all of these. When I give an accounting for my errors, I alone will stand. My mentors and friends tried so hard so many times to help me make wise decisions and push me down the right path. Sometimes, they'll have succeeded even against my hard-headedness and I think God will give them an amazing reward for sticking it out with me against all odds.

I'm going to Estes Park, Colorado to attend the Colorado Christian Writers Conference this week. I'm actually going up today to help set up because I want to give back to people who have been so loving, giving, and generous in my life. A very, very miniscule way to show my appreciation. But at least a small one exists in this circumstance.

So I do wonder who you'd want as a mentor, if you could.

But I also wonder how you'd give back to them to show gratitude?

Angie Breidenbach


  1. I'm also so grateful for all the help I've had! My favorite thing is to name them in the dedication or acknowledgments in my books. In fact, in my first book, the page was way too long! My editor had to ask me to cut it down. Boy, that was hard. I kept all the names but trimmed what I said about each one. :)

    Angie, have fun at your conference!!

  2. Hi Angela:

    Funny thing. I wrote this comment before I looked at the existing comments. But I’ll post it as is anyway.

    To reward mentors I would mention them in my acknowledgement section in the front of my book. The best example of this is one I’ve seen by Missy Tippens in her “Her Unlikely Family” which takes up an entire page in small print. I’ve used this as an example in one of my posts about adding ‘marketing vitamins’ to your novel.

    Having acknowledgements from experts, like nurses or doctors in a medical book, act to enrich the reading experience. I always read the acknowledgements and feel better if the author has done her research. I even wrote in that post that if you don’t have any acknowledgements go out and get some! All the people you acknowledge will probably ‘talk up’ you book and give copies to their mother and siblings!

    So I go to post this and Missy has already posted ahead of me! (Great minds :).


  3. LOL, Vince! Yes, great minds and all... :)

  4. Have a great time at the conference, Angie.

    As far as mentors, I look forward to the time when I can "pay it forward." I always try to let those who've mentored and helped me along the way know how much I appreciate their help through words and actions, but I think it is equally important to help the next struggling writer along. After all, where would any of us be without someone to help us along?

  5. I am so glad to hear that Missy had a full page devoted to acknowledgements, because I'm going to need a lot of space when my time (hopefully) comes. But I agree with Dianna that we should let those that help us know our appreciation and so I'm going to take this opportunity to thank Missy for introducing me to the F.A.I.T.H. blog. I think it is just great and I always enjoy reading what everyone has to say!

  6. Eva Marie, we're so glad you're here!

    And a word of advice for all you writers: keep track of everyone you want to thank! I got the idea from Caroyln Greene's plotting notebook. She has a page for you to keep a list of everyone for the acknowledgments. I'm always surprised when I go back and read my list. There's always someone I would have forgotten (especially those early books that I worked on for 2-3 years!).

  7. Thanks for the shout out Angie. I need to start writing down all of those who have helped and are helping me. The FAITH Girls are at the top of the list!

  8. Hi everyone,

    I tried so hard to come back and comment, but I kept getting kicked off the internet in Estes Park this week. Ugh! I could read the comments for a minute and then I'd lose internet. I'm so sorry I wasn't able to get here sooner.

    After the Colorado Christian Writers Conference, I have to add so many more names to the people that have uplifted me, mentored, and supported my writing, speaking, and dreams.

    I feel like God has given me so much through others. I can only keep saying thank you, I am so grateful.