Mentoring the Next Great American Novelist by Mike Squatrito

Well, today is a very first for me!  It is the very first time that someone is guest posting here at “WATCH NONNIE WRITE!”  I am the lucky host to fellow author Mike Squatrito of The Overlords series.  Although I have never read from this genre before, I did take a moment to glimpse inside THE OVERLORDS:  LEGEND OF THE TREASURE book because I felt I should have some background on the author and his writing BEFORE I welcomed him into your reading spaces, and let me tell you, although I was a little freaked by the cover of the book (I’m truly afraid of the boogey man), the surprise I found inside the cover once I had read all the way thru to the first chapter, amazed me!   In not one, but a few ways,  let me share with you how he WOWED me.  First, let’s start with the writing…it was simply impeccable!  Mike’s obviously strong grasp of the English vocabulary was very impressive.  I could almost FEEL  myself being transported right into the home of the peasant who had found the treasure (no spoiler given away here by me, OH NO!).  Mike’s writing was so descriptive that I could almost SEE the much sought after object, and I could FEEL the warmth of the room stemming from the fireplace.  The second wondrous thing was… I never would have believed that fantasy writing such as this, would be able to hold my attention beyond a mere few seconds, but this book did.  On one hot summer day (which we seem to have many of here in my corner of the world), I will head to my hammock in my beautiful front yard, and I will read this entire series.   I would recommend you all do the same, especially if I’m suggesting it because again, this is a genre I would definitely not typically even consider reading!  Thank you, Mike for introducing me to a world like I’ve never known before!

And with that, I welcome Mike of the Overlords into your most humble reading spaces. Take it away, Mike!

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Hi everyone!  My name is Mike Squatrito, I hail from Tiverton, Rhode Island, and I’m the author of The Overlords fantasy series.  Before I get started on this posting, I just wanted to thank Nonnie for letting me appear on her blog.  She just finished a highly successful blog tour, which included a session on my Overlords Blog.  Today I’ll be writing and challenging each of you about mentoring students.

When I started writing, oh some twenty plus years ago, I had no formal training.  I was a computer science major and I’m an engineer today.  Those fields don’t exactly scream creative writer, do they?  However, I had a great story in my head and was very determined to get it out.  Unfortunately, I wrote like an engineer but I was lucky enough to meet some very talented people along the way, and today I can proudly say that I have three very solid pieces of work.

Where does mentoring come in to play, you ask?  I decided long ago that I needed to help those like me, to stop from making the mistakes I had made and to hopefully put them on their writing path in a much sooner time frame than I had.  Children and young adults (tweens and teens) have an incredible amount of energy and creativity, but lack the experience to truly get them where they need to be.

Four years ago, a high school senior from a neighboring town who knew about my Overlords fantasy series, heard that I held writer’s workshops and presentations, and asked me to be his mentor for his senior project.  I was more than happy to oblige.  I knew this young man had a story in his head that he needed to tell;  it became my job to help him fulfill his dreams.

This is where I’m hoping YOU can help out, too.  I helped this student in many ways from lecturing about creating great characters, developing a setting, the story point of view,  putting together an outline,  utilizing my Four Pass editing process, teaching him how to make a physical book and eBook, as well as maneuvering social media outlets, and marketing.  On his presentation day, I sat with his mother in the lecture hall while he presented all he had learned to the four judges.  He then handed them four copies of his work.  His mother and I were very proud, and we’re happy to say that he received an A+ for his senior project.  Since that time, I’ve honed my mentoring skills to help out three more students, all receiving A’s, and have already been asked to mentor another student this upcoming school year.

I firmly believe in paying it forward and decided that what I have learned, should be public knowledge.  Don’t be afraid of telling others what you have learned as well,  because they might only be missing that last nugget you hold in your head.  You’ll be surprised at what you might think others know when in reality, they don’t.  So when that student congratulates you on your latest book and asks if you would help him or her with their senior project, don’t hesitate to say YES.  Teach them what you know and be there for them throughout the entire process.  They will be eternally grateful for your time and experience, and you will learn that all of your life’s hard work translates into so much more than book sales.

My time here is up, but I wanted to pass along a few shameful plugs.  You can learn more about me and my project at http://www.the-overlords.com and you can contact me directly at mike@the-overlords.com.   I’m always looking for other authors to guest blog on my site so if you’re interested, please contact me.  And yes, I am always open to mentoring!!!

You can purchase my books and eBooks on my website or if you have Amazon and Barnes & Noble accounts, at the following:

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=squatrito%20overlords

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/squatrito-overlords?store=book&keyword=squatrito+overlords

Like The Overlords Book Series on Facebook, and FOLLOW me on Twitter @Overlords

For authors-to-be OR  self-published authors looking to spread the word about your books, I have a self-publishing consultancy called Self Publishing Insight that might be right for you.  I have experts that provide services for editing, artwork, social media, self-promotion, eBooks, and much more.  Let us help you!

Overlords_book_1_final2Mike Squatrito, Jr.

Mike, thanks again for coming and sharing as you and I  have previously  chatted about people helping other people, or as I constantly put it, CANDLES LIGHTING OTHER CANDLES.  Thank you for being one of those who don’t mind paying it forward.  Hopefully, after your visit here, your story will have inspired others to reach out more,  as well as to mentor more of our youth.  You are always welcome here at WATCH NONNIE WRITE!  Do come again!

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