Mentoring Program

Log in to our 2022 IRP Cohort here!

IRP recognizes that there is a lot of talent and resources in the romance industry and we want to help raise that talent up. To do that, we need romance authors who have hit milestones in their writing and publishing journey to share, connect and mentor other authors. The beauty of mentoring is that it helps both partners grow and learn from one another. Every published author (regardless on what publishing path they've chosen) has knowledge to share with those who is interested. Writing doesn't have to be a solo sport-- as a mentor, you can help be a sounding board and ally to a new writer aiming for success. As a mentee, you can build helpful connections and even lasting friendships with other romance authors who have walked the talk.

You don't have to be an expert, you only have to be open to share your skills and experience with someone who wants to learn. The benefits of such a program is uplifting, supportive and inclusive.

The Foundation of an effective mentorship is Trust

  • Trust between mentor and mentee.

  • Rebuilding trust if/when needed

  • Loyalty

  • Confidentiality

Mentors will get a bio/profile to our Mentoring platform where they can meet potential mentees.

Surveys and feedback reports will be given to both mentor and mentee after the end of the commitment so both parties get information on how the mentorship worked for them. A 90-day check-in will be sent to each mentorship participant to see how things are going. Please be vocal and open to each other so nothing is lost in miscommunication.

Mentees: Please take ownership of scheduling time with your Mentor

Mentors: Please commit to your time and be sure to communicate when things change. We all understand that schedules change, and as long as we're all clear, misunderstandings can be at a minimum.

All romance writers are welcomed to apply, especially #ownvoices, LGBTQ+, BIPOC, authors with disability and other members of underrepresented communities.

IRP Mentorship 2022 Timeline

April 1 - April 28: Mentor Sign-ups

April 5: Mentee applications accepted

May 1: Deadline for Mentee application submission

May 12-13: Mentor Orientation

May 16-17: Mentee Orientation

May 21 - 28: Mentorship pairing/virtual meetups

June 1: Mentorships start (6 month minimum)

June 30: 30-day Check-in

Aug 31: 90-day Check-in

Nov 30th: Mentorship commitment is fulfilled. Evaluation survey for all mentors and mentees are sent.

2020 Mentorship Program Demographics

Total Pool of 2020 Applicants

Total Accepted Candidates

What Makes a Great Mentor?

Mentor’s Criteria/Commitment

  • Be an avid listener to your mentee and stay engaged.

  • Provide guidance and constructive feedback to your mentor

  • Maintain confidentiality throughout the relationship

  • Meet with your mentee at least 1- 2 hours a month. Other follow ups such as email and messaging throughout is encouraged.

  • Commit to six months minimum of mentorship per mentee.

  • Be open to sharing your experiences and act as a sounding board

  • Share your experiences from your publishing journey. Don't be afraid of a little vulnerability with sharing your mistakes. This is how we learn.

Accepting Mentors now! Please sign up below!

Being a Successful Mentee:

Mentee/Protégé’s Criteria/Commitment

  • Is ready for change, expansion and growth.

  • Is willing to accept feedback both positive and constructive

  • Understands that mentoring is a two-way street and must be positive growth experience for the mentor

  • Understands their own goals.

  • Meet with your mentor at least 1- 2 hours a month. Other follow ups such as email and messaging throughout is encouraged.

  • Commit to six months minimum of mentorship.

  • Asks the question--will a mentor really help me? And if so, how?

  • Is ready to do the work in between “formal” sessions

  • Understands that match may not be perfect and how to handle that situation

  • Is extremely respectful of boundaries and the mentor’s time.

Application form opens April 5, 2021

Tips for Effective Mentorships

You can improve the content of conversations with your mentors when you develop thoughtful agendas focusing on your questions/challenges. Share them with your mentor in advance so they are prepared.

A successful mentorship is mentee-driven and mentor-guided.

Mentees, take time to identify objectives and goals to share with your mentor. They can then help guide you to next steps.

Make sure you schedule a regular cadence of meeting time so it's on the calendar, but also be flexible should schedules have to change. Life happens.

Missed an opportunity to participate in our mentorship this round? Author Sami Ellis has compiled a list of various mentorship programs for authors