The word “Mentor” comes to us from The Odyssey. The goddess Athena assumes the guise of Mentor, thereby helping the Greek hero Telemachus on his heroic quest to spurn his mother’s suitors and find his father’s killers. Mentors are god-like creatures in disguise. And they serve to prepare you––the hero––to face the unknown adventure of writing your book.
By courageously taking up the call to write a book, we bring the gods and all of nature to our side. Commitment has power, as the mountaineer William Murray wrote:
“…there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way.”
Your mentor may take the form of a wise teacher, but just as easily a dead ancestor or a potent totemic object. The main thing about a mentor is that they stand apart from the regular, everyday world. A mentor carries a deep spiritual energy and potency about them.
I’ve had mentors both inner, outer, real, tangible and of the spirit variety ever since I committed fully to the writing path. What about you?
Make a list of people, living or dead, that feel like mentors to you. Hint: writers you admire make great mentors.
Do you know of significant object that holds spiritual significance for you. Could this also be a mentor? How?
Have you had a dream that is guiding and informing your path as a writer? What was it? How did it help you?