In this day and age, when just about everyone has access to Whatsapp and even belongs to a group or two, what could be better than a Whatsapp group that mentors, that too free of cost.
When ‘Tell Your Story’, a Goa-based Whatsapp mentoring group began, it was with the aim of providing direction to young writers in Goa.
Its members, comprising experienced writers mentoring young writers and youngsters wanting to get into writing set them on a project, a literary enterprise leading, to All Those Tales, a compilation of 35 stories from, about and set in Goa.
Edited and compiled by Nellie Velho Pereira and Frederick Noronha, the book has stories, memoirs, essays and other literary pieces written by various authors – young guns as well as seasoned writers.
PRODUCT OF A WHATSAPP MENTORING GROUP
Frederick created the Whatsapp group in January 2022, and in a span of just two years, a book with compilations submitted by contributors, many from the group itself, will soon hit the bookstands.
While Nellie is a special educator at a school, Frederick is a well-known journalist, writer and publisher and founder of Goa,1556 publishing house. He says that the ‘Tell Your Story’ group is for beginners and to mentor them.
“The initiative was set up to mentor younger folk, because we need writers, especially among them, so that Goa continues to find its voice,” he says.
“We need to get young people to speak up in public. Once that happens that will build their confidence and they will surely write. Some already are,” he adds.
BOOK ON CHILDHOOD MEMORIES
The mentorship has borne fruit in the form of the compilation, which had its focus primarily on stories we had heard as children.
A product of mentoring through a Whatsapp group, the language of these stories is not limited to English. The book has stories in Konkani, too.
And interestingly, there’s one in Bhati, a dialect of Konkani-Marathi. Some stories are witty, many are nostalgic, some throw light on the political situation of yesteryears etc.
Speaking about the group, Frederick says that the group is a mentorship network promoting skills that encourage writing about Goa and its diaspora.
Even local journalism and interviewing are covered, he informs.
The group analyses topics related to the writing process, answering queries, discussing, providing background and relevant reading material via the group.
Currently, the group has close to 200 members and growing.
If you'd like a copy of All Those Tales, or if you are interested in joining the ‘Tell Your Story’ writers Whatsapp mentoring group, contact Frederick Noronha on +91 98221 22436