Hourly Mentoring Services: $45 per hour*

The one-on-one, pay-as-you-go, mentoring service is scheduled one hour at a time. Mentoring sessions may involve brainstorming, problem-solving, and informal discussions about chunks of a work-in-progress. Writers have the option to schedule more meetings, if desired, at the end of each meeting. Payment is required in advance of each meeting with the mentor.

The Hourly Mentoring Service is perfect for writers of all levels looking for:
•   Personal interaction/conversation/consultation with a writing coach
•   Information and instruction through one-on-one discussion
•   Suggestions, instruction, information, and brainstorming
•   Feedback on a small excerpt of a work-in-progress
•   Flexible scheduling that matches your personal schedule and process
•   Pay-as-you-go meetings requiring no long-term commitment
•   Help with beginning, continuing, or completing a work-in-progress
•   Assistance with the business of writing including building a platform, marketing, and formatting manuscripts for submission to traditional publishers or for self-publishing

Please note:
The hourly Mentoring Service is not intended for complete Manuscript Reviews which require a higher level of engagement, time, and input by a reviewing consultant. Find out more about Manuscript Reviews here.**
•  Mentors and consultants make every effort to help the author strengthen the current manuscript but they, and the Carnegie Center, make no guarantees that the author’s manuscript will be acquired by a publisher, or that it will achieve a specific level of sales.
•  Mentor, consultants, and the Carnegie Center have no ownership interest in the author’s work; the author retains all rights, including copyright.
•  Opinions, feedback, critiques, and reviews reflect the experiences and preferences of the mentors and consultants. The author determines what content in the sessions resonates with their project and writing style.
•  The Carnegie Center is not responsible for mentor or consultant comments or the content of sessions and reviews.

How to schedule an Hourly Mentoring Service session with a mentor:
1. See below for full bios and email addresses for Carnegie Center mentors.**
2. Contact your chosen mentor by email with a brief description of your project and the type of mentoring help you are seeking.
3. Once you have scheduled the meeting, pay for your session online by clicking here. Please specify your mentor in the ‘notes’ section during checkout.*
4. If you schedule additional hourly Mentoring Service sessions with your mentor, be sure to pay in advance for each session.*

*If you would like to request a reduction of fees based on financial need, you may send your request via email to the Coordinator of Author Services. Include a brief explanation of your financial need in the body of the email.

**For more information about Mentoring Services or for help choosing the best mentoring option for your project, contact the Coordinator of Author Services.

Available Writing Mentors:

Sylvia Ahrens is a retired English professor who loves all aspects of writing and believes there is a writer in everyone. She has degrees in English Literature, Creative Writing, and Women’s Studies from Western Kentucky University. Her latest book is Reckless Pilgrims from Broadstone Books.

Sylvia is available for mentoring in: poetry, women’s writing, editing, revising, and proofreading. If you are interested in meeting with Sylvia, send her an e-mail.

Barbara Alfaro is the recipient of a Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award in Playwriting for her play Dos Madres. A graduate of Goddard College and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Barbara is the author of Theatre Mad, a collection of short comedies, and Catbird, a book of poems. Mirror Talk, her memoir about working in theatre, won the IndieReader Discovery Award for Best Memoir.

Barbara is available for mentoring in: memoir, poetry, and playwriting. If you are interested in meeting with Barbara, send her an e-mail

Robin Baskette is a freelance proofreader, copy editor, and technical writer. She has a background in engineering and math education. She started her own consulting business, where her work includes editing, technical writing, and education writing. She is a graduate of Purdue University and Eastern Kentucky University. Robin has published magazine articles and she is working on a young adult novel.

Robin is available for mentoring in: general writing skills, proofreading and editing, and non-fiction (memoir, articles, academic papers, and technical writing). If you are interested in meeting with Robin, send her an e-mail.

Erin Chandler holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Spalding University and Masters in Theatre from University of Kentucky. Her memoir, June Bug Versus Hurricane was published in 2017. Her original play of the same name was produced at the Lost Studio in Los Angeles, prompting Nick Cassavetes to write a screenplay based on her book on which Erin worked as script doctor. Her collection of essays, Cinderella Sweeping Up came out in 2019. Erin is founder and editor of Rabbit House Press, where she published the critically acclaimed Bad Sex in Kentucky and others. Erin lives in Versailles and teaches creative writing, memoir, playwriting, and screenwriting. Find out more about Erin at ErinChandlerAuthor.com or RabbitHousePress.com.

Erin is available for mentoring in screenwriting and playwriting. If you are interested in meeting with Erin, send her an e-mail.

Leif Erickson is an English professor who has taught composition, creative writing, literature, and other Humanities courses for nearly 20 years. Leif has been passionately obsessed with language and has come to view writing as a way of liberation. In the classroom (and to anyone who will listen), he takes joy in demystifying the writing process and encouraging students to view writing as a practice that enables them to enjoy the best life possible. Leif holds a BA in English from Georgetown College, an MA in American Literature & Rhetoric/Composition from Eastern Kentucky University, and an MFA in creative nonfiction from Murray State University. His work has appeared, among other places, in Kentucky’s Twelve Days of Christmas and Kentucky Monthly magazine.

Leif is available for mentoring in: creative nonfiction; other types of nonfiction (i.e. academic writing, journalism, magazine writing, etc.); fiction; improved reading skills & habits; general writing technique and craft; analyzing literature and other writing; and proofreading/editing. If you are interested in meeting with Leif, send him an e-mail.

Lisa Haneberg has an MFA from Goddard College and is a fiction and nonfiction writer. She has published over fifteen nonfiction books and the first two books in her mystery series. She’s worked with agents, publicists, six traditional publishers, and has self-published print and e-books. She started blogging in 2004 before it was cool and is active on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Lisa did a 9,400-mile solo motorbike tour to promote one of her books.  She lives with her husband and two dogs in Lexington, Kentucky. Visit her website at LisaHaneberg.com.

Lisa is available for mentoring in revision, author platform, self-publishing, nonfiction book proposals, blogging, Facebook pages, marketing strategy, publishing process. If you are interested in meeting with Lisa, send her an e-mail.

Marcia Thornton Jones is an award-winning author who has traditionally published more than 135 books for children with sales totaling more than 43 million copies worldwide. Her works include Woodford Brave, Ratfink, and Champ. She is also the co-author of seven popular series including “Keyholders” and “The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids” for which she is an executive producer of the live-action series optioned by Bardel/Rainbow. She is also the co-author of the re-imagined graphic novel series “Adventures of the Bailey School Kids” published by Graphix by Scholastic Inc. Marcia lives in Lexington, Kentucky where she is the coordinator of the Carnegie Center Author Academy, and the after-school tutoring program associate. She also teaches writing, serves as a workshop facilitator, is a frequent presenter at schools, and mentors adult writers. In addition to the graphic novel series, her other recent books include Writing Kids Books: The Ultimate Guide, and the e-release of her mid-grade novel, Ratfink, both exclusively found on Amazon.com.

Marcia is available for writing in picture books, chapter books, and middle-grade fiction, and journaling. If you are interested in meeting with Marcia, send her an e-mail.

Claudia Love Mair is the author of about a dozen books, including The Amanda Bell Brown Mysteries and Don’t You Fall Now, a memoir. She has an MFA in Writing at Spalding University, and she teaches writing at Carnegie and elsewhere. She serves as the coordinator of the Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative at the Carnegie Center.

Claudia is available for mentoring in fiction, memoir, and inspirational writing. If you are interested in meeting with Claudia, send her an e-mail.

William “Bill” McCann, Jr.
is a playwright, a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, and a co-founder and president of Kentucky Playwrights Workshop, Inc. His full-length play Boats Against the Current, was first produced at Flashback Theater, Somerset, KY in 2019. He has edited two anthologies of plays by Kentucky playwrights and a total of 37 one-act plays altogether. Three of his short plays have been published, one of those, Strained Pears, was runner-up in the Kentucky Theatre Association’s 2020 Roots of the Bluegrass 10-minute Play Contest. Mr. McCann has been a Playwright Mentor at the Carnegie Center since 2014. Since 2019, Mr. McCann has been the arts columnist of the Winchester Sun. He lives in Winchester with Jeanine Grant Lister, three cats, and Halligan the Wonder Dog. You can find out more about Mr. McCann on his website WHMcCann.com.

Bill is available for mentoring in playwrighting. If you are interested in meeting with Bill, send him an e-mail.

Doris Settles has a long career as a writer and photojournalist. She holds a B.S. in English/Journalism and M.S. in Instructional Design and has taught writing classes for years. She has served as a mentor in the UK Writing Center, and developed the first completely online English 101/102 sequence. She has written for newspapers and magazines, managed her own desktop-publishing business, and wrote her own “expert” book, which was both self-published and traditionally published. She is a frequent speaker at state, regional and national conferences on the topic of school safety and Digital Literacy.

Doris is available for mentoring in writing the expert book, writing nonfiction, magazine and corporate writing, and public speaking. If you are interested in meeting with Doris, send her an e-mail.

Jason Sizemore is a three-time Hugo Award-nominated editor, writer, and publisher who operates the science fiction, fantasy, and horror press Apex Book Company. He is the author of the collection of dark science fiction and horror shorts Irredeemableand the tell-all creative non-fiction For Exposure: The Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher.

Jason is available for mentoring in science fiction, fantasy, or horror writing, copy editing, revising, developmental work, and proofreading. If you are interested in meeting with Jason, send him an e-mail.

We hope to see you soon at the Carnegie Center, home to the Kentucky Writers Hall of Fame and writers and readers of all levels.

Join Us

251 West Second Street
Lexington, KY 40507


(859) 254-4175

The building is currently closed to the public until further notice.

Monday – Thursday: 10:00am – 7:30pm
Friday: 10:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday: 10:00am – 2:00pm
Sunday: CLOSED

  • homegrown-authors
  • color-purple