I'm a hybrid author--meaning, I self-publish some of my books as well as have an agent and have my books in bookstores. It is an absolute DREAM to live in this world. I have over 20 books published with many more planned. My latest release was with Forever and I just turned in book 2 of that series (nothing ever beats that feeling!) Our family motto is "do what you love, love what you do" and I chase that feeling every day when it comes to writing because it is not a sprint, but marathon.
I'm a former HS teacher turned techie turned author, originally from central Illinois but moved to the southwest 10 years ago and never looked back. I'm a huge sports fan and if I'm not writing or plotting in my head, I'm with my husband or kiddos playing games and doing everything to win.
I'm represented by Jessica Faust at Bookends and about to go on sub again soon!
My wishlist: Give me any subgenre of romance with a happy ending. While I enjoy reading women's fiction or erotica from time to time, I don't think I can offer much as a mentor to that genre. I'm very comfortable with NA and A romance, any heat level. (I write steamier levels so don't let that hold you back ;) )
Here are some of my favorite tropes or vibes that I am always anxious to read: • sports / athletes/ coaching stories (I'm a SUCKER for them. SUCKER) • fantasy (I am 100% down bad for Fourth Wing. I've been on SUCH a fantasy / romance kick) • rivals / enemies / former friends turned enemies (the T E N S I O N!!!) • the unlikeable, sassy, too-much female MC stories • second chance romance / marriage in crisis (one word: ANGST) • Anything with vibes of Twister or Day After Tomorrow (disaster movies & romance? Chef's Kiss) • college setting (it's so rich with emotions and drama and the natural forced-proximity) ANY of the mentioned "wish list items" are open to LGBTQ+, #ownvoices, and all diversity representation.
Do NOT Send Me: • Romantic Suspense • Urban Fantasy • Timeline jumping (this just doesn't work in my brain) • Paranormal Romance • Death of a child • Miscarriage • Sexual assault (unless in backstory/off the page) • BDSM (nothing against this, I just don’t know enough to help a story with BDSM components) • Teacher/student '• Age gap • Religious/inspirational romance
My ideal mentee:
I want someone who is hungry. You gotta put in the time to get better at a craft and writing is hard AF. An ideal mentee for me isn't afraid of hard work, of being pushed, or put outside their comfort zone. Being open to feedback to grow is really challenging, but someone with an open mind ready to learn (and let's be honest--every time I've mentored, I've learned so much too so it is an absolute partnership)
I also would love someone who also isn't sure about what path they want to take. I feel like I can offer guidance (the good / bad / lessons learned) from both worlds when it comes to self-publishing versus traditional. Things have a weird way of working out and so someone who is flexible to change would be a solid fit.
As far as the story and writing craft go, I'm not a good copy-editor or grammar police. I'm.... the worst, so someone who has a solid foundation of writing syntax would be best. I'm a great fit for pacing, dialogue, characterization, and structure overhaul, but if you're looking to help edit your story I am NOT the one.
My mentoring style:
Step 1: We chat and I learn your goals. I would shape the mentorship based on what you need. Plus, I love goal-setting because hello, former teacher, I love data and action plans and nerdery.
Step 2: Once we have a goal set, I'll dive I N T O your story and go hard. First round will be big picture changes. This would be numerous calls, texts, emails, etc. (There is NO such thing as too many questions!)
Step 3: After large scale edits / revisions, I'd dive back into the story and go deeper.
Step 4: We'd discuss next steps and repeat steps 2-3 as many times as needed. Then, once you feel confident and ready for whatever your next step is, we'd make a plan and go at it.
I view mentorship as a lifelong partnership. I want to grow with you. I want to help when rejections come in (because they will) and cheer when you get good news (because you will). I've never had the same experience while mentoring because every time is based on the person, their story, their goals.