Mentor and Mentee pair Kathleen Scheiner and Laura Rose Cardona share their experience of first meeting at this year’s Writing and Mentoring Program orientation.
Kathleen: I’ve had three mentees so far in Girls Write Now, but it still doesn’t change. When the mentor-mentee pairs are being announced, my heart is trip-hammering. I clap as each pair is announced, but I nervously scan the room, looking for her. Who will she be? Laura Rose Cardona’s name is announced and then mine, and she’s sitting across from me in the back of the room. I see the big smile on her face and she’s wearing a T-shirt with anime characters from Sword Art Progressive, a manga that I proofread. Perfect, she’s perfect. We sit next to each other and words explode from us. We have so much to say to each other—about the novels we’re working on, our artwork, our families. I feel a sense of joy as I leave orientation. Danni Faith Green, Tessa-Lee Thomas, and Maxine Armstrong are mentee names carved on my heart, and I know Laura Rose Cardona’s will be joining them.
Laura: I was never one to be reserved or withdrawn. As an outspoken extrovert and participator of a number of extracurriculars, social gatherings were nothing out of the norm for myself, so when I was scheduled to appear at the Girls Write Now offices for orientation, my mind and my heart fluttered to attend. After entering the headquarters, I must admit, I was feeling a slight sensation of intimidation due to the sheer size of the crowd in such a compact space. However, as time passed, I was swept up by the warm welcoming of the Girls Write Now community, as well as the anticipation and sheer excitement dwelling in my mind about meeting my mentor. After discovering her to be Kathleen Scheiner, my joy swelled to a crescendo, as the two of us engaged in elating conversations that made me despise the restriction of time, with only three and half hours allotted for the entire orientation. After the ceremony, not only was I looking forward to continuing socializing with my mentor, but I also felt truly embedded in the wonderful community that is Girls Write Now.