Hiya KissPitch Mentee Hopeful!!
Welcome to KissPitch! Odds are good you’ve read a few of these, so I’m just going to jump right in, completely out of the usual order of things. #Chaos
I want diversity and inclusivity and LGBTQIA+ books, and specifically books that celebrate these things by authors within those communities. But I’m not the person for the traumatic experience—it can be present in the backstory, but I don’t want it to be the plot. I can’t handle that kind of heaviness in my life right now and I wouldn’t be able to help you.
Self-publishing or Trad?
I want both! I’m currently self-publishing, but I’ve got an agent. I’ve been on sub. I can help you write a killer query and give advice about agents and talk about the trad route. I can also talk you through self-publishing.
I’m looking for adult romances in the following subgenres…
Contemporary/Rom Com. This is my wheelhouse. I write steamy books with angst and humor and most of my reading is the same.
Romantasy. High or low, I’ll take it. I was a fantasy reader before coming to romance, and I spent decades writing an epic high fantasy that I have destroyed all evidence of. I’m also planning to jump into this subgenre. So while I may not be on as firm a ground as with contemp/rom coms, I feel confident that I can help! The only thing I want is for that romance to be front and center!
Paranormal/Urban Fantasy. I’m not interested in white cis hetero witches (can’t swing a cauldron without hitting one), but if you’ve got something different, I’m in. I’m also in for shifters, vampires, and hot hot demons.
Erotica. I want it. But with caveats. If you’ve got a spicy little MMF, FFM, or similar pairings with more or NB characters, I’m in! I’m not really into BDSM, so unless you’re confidently familiar with that community and the experiences within it, maybe give me a pass (same if there’s humiliation and degradation in your book).
Historical. I don’t want regency ballrooms unless there’s also explosions, but if you have something from another time, I might be for you! As long as you don’t mind that I am going to take every historical thing you tell me as fact because I am not doing that research.
Subgenres I’m not interested in:
Dark romance/Mafia romance/MC romance: Unless your FMC is the mafia don (donna? Idk) overthrowing the patriarchal systems of the mob, I’ll pass.
Cowboy romance/military romance/cop romance. Not my jam.
Inspirational romance. I am not for you.
Women’s Fiction. Sorry, I am a straight up romance girlie.
YA or NA. I am 42. I don’t know anything about the Youths.
Anything that has a whiff of supporting/upholding fascism/colonialism, etc. I do not want it.
Tropes I love:
Enemies to lovers.
Friends to lovers.
Forbidden Romance (this is a problematic button I cannot uninstall)
Brother’s best friend and it’s variations
Best friend’s ex
Basically, if it’s messy, I love it.
HIGH HEAT! Bring on the spice. If you don’t have a lot because you’re not sure how to write it and you want some help, I can help you!! I especially love a fast burn but I won’t discount a slow burn (I will yell at you in the margins for making me suffer).
Tropes I don’t really like:
Love Triangles. Especially if the FMC has to choose between the good on paper guy or the bad boy with the heart of gold, but mostly I just want them to end in a throuple.
Secret Baby or Whoops Baby or small children in general. I have kids. I love my kids. I want a break from my kids. And with all the restrictions on reproductive rights, I’m not really in the mood for books where a character ends up pregnant. If your character has an abortion and it’s not a huge crisis of faith for them or a source of conflict with their partner, then I’m in though.
Alpha-holes in contemporaries. I’ll accept them in other sub-genres, but I can’t take a walking red flag in contemporary/rom com land. Too close to home.
Still with me?? Read on!
Who am I?
A stone cold weirdo, basically. My path to publishing has been…haphazard? Unusual? Accidental? I’m pretty much standing in my kitchen asking why I came into this room, but the publishing version.
Here it is in a run-on sentence or two: I wrote a Christmas novella that turned into a full novel that got me selected for PitchWars in 2020 and an agent in the showcase and then died on sub—editors liked it, but not enough to buy it in the panini-times. I wrote a different book and shelved it and went through a Dark Time and then decided what I needed to do was write the first book and the third book (because that book that got me here? It really was book two). I wrote the things, found my joy in writing again, and along the way mentored in the first KissPitch, which apparently was 2022 but what is time? I’m self-publishing this series, and I’ve enjoyed doing that so much I’ve decided to do another series! And maybe a paranormal! And a romantasy!! But I am still agented and still would like to traditionally publish something so I also need to write something for my agent!
Who are you?
You, oh author, have a polished manuscript in your hot little hands. It’s been through other readers who aren’t your mom/dad/partner/best friend/beloved pet. You’ve done as much as you can, but maybe you think it could be better and you want some help figuring out how to do that. Or maybe you have no idea—you just want to experience a mentorship before you jump into the trenches! As long as you have an open mind and a willingness to consider feedback and do some homework (including spreadsheets!!), you’ll be a great mentee for a lucky mentor (who could maybe be me?? <flirty wink>)
So what can you expect if you work with me?
Hopefully a lot of fun and hard work and a polished book you’re ready to take into the query trenches or start on the self-publishing journey with. My feedback is straight forward and to the point—I will tell you what I love but I’ll also tell you where I think things aren’t working.
This is what the process will look like if we agree to work together!
I’ll read through your manuscript twice. Then I’ll send you an edit letter that will probably be many pages long with structural things I think we can work on. Along with that, you’ll have homework. The homework will depend on the nature of the edits but will most likely consist of some GMC work and will definitely involve making a scene map. This in an incredibly useful tool for revisions and one you’ll want to keep in your pocket. We’ll also create an edit plan which will help you tackle the revisions in small chunks.
You’ll revise! Then, when you’re finished, you’ll send it to me. I’ll read through, making sure the changes are all working. There might be a second smaller round after this, but if not, we’ll move onto line edits! You’ll get a break (just kidding!! If you want to go trad, you’ll work on your query letter and synopsis. If you want to self-publish, you’ll work on your back cover copy and taglines) while I go through and leave line level feedback. This is where I have to point out that I am not a Grammar. I don’t do copyedits, but I’ll catch what I can. I’ll also give you a list of crutch words and filler words to cut, which will tighten your prose. Then I’ll give it back and you’ll give me your query/synopsis or back cover copy/taglines. We’ll work on that query or cover copy until we’re both happy. Then I’ll send you off, but not before answering any questions you have about agents/the trenches or self-publishing.
How to query me!
I'll provide instructions for sending when I open, but you'll want to have a query, a synopsis (one or two pages), and your first chapter or first 25 pages (whatever is longer) all formatted to industry standard ready to go.
When will you open?
I will very likely open twice a year, once in April and once in August, but it will depend on my publishing schedule, too. I’ll be sure to make an announcement in the FridayKiss Facebook Group when I do!