Okay, I’m taking this opportunity to brag a little on a couple of people, my two “mentees.”

Malia Spencer wrote a really neat paper comparing Randy Ingermanson’s Snowflake method with traditional rhetorical stages. It was a college-level final project for a rhetoric class at the University of Hawaii, and along with the illustrious Randy Ingermanson, she quoted me! She got a B and the professor had glowing things to say about it. Mostly due, I’m sure, to Malia’s writing and not so much to her quoting me. Though, I think it’s one of the few times I’ve seen myself quoted. Have to admit, it’s pretty cool. You can check it out here. Click on the links on the left to navigate the site. I’m specifically mentioned in the freshman and senior sections (yep, that was a blatant plug for me. Gotta take what I can get at this point.). Pretty nice to have someone say nice things about you publicly. Made me cry. Yeah, yeah, it doesn’t take much. Okay, enough blubbering. You can check out Malia’s blog here where this week she’s talking about some of the stuff she learned in her writing classes.

And, my other “mentee” Sabrina Butcher, just finished the first draft of her first book. I’m so proud! It’s a great thing to finish a book yourself. It’s still really cool to help someone else through the process. Both she and Malia have learned and grown so much, just since April. Unbelievable. I just kind of stand around and watch.

When I agreed to be a mentor, it wasn’t because I thought I had much to offer. I’m not published yet, I could be completely off-base with anything I say. I just remembered what it was like to decide to become a serious writer and have absolutely no clue how to go about it and to not know anyone who did. So, I figured I could share what I know, give my opinions (which are numerous) and be a listening ear. Didn’t expect to make two close friends.

And on the subject of bragging, I can proudly say that this year’s bragging rights for hiding/finding Christmas gifts goes to me. Usually Peter wins. I’ll do something stupid like leave a receipt out, or he’ll stumble over his gifts somewhere in the closet. And I never find what he gets for me, used to be because it was locked in the trunk of his car. Well, now he has a work truck and can’t do that, so I found my present today while I was looking for a video on top of a bookshelf. It was wrapped, but I have an idea what it was. If you’ve read the end of Witness, it’s from the same store Kyle buys Heather’s gift. Who knew my husband paid so much attention to my writing? And I managed to hide the receipts and wrap his presents without his finding them. So I swept the contest this year. Probably will be the only time that will happen.

And lucky you. You’ll get three posts from me this week. I’m hoping to post Friday or Saturday on the results of our road trip to Christmas, Arizona. Should be fun. Might even have pictures.