I offer manuscript consultations to individuals for manuscripts up to 600 standard pages (double spaced, twelve point standard font, 1 to 1.25 inch margins). Currently, I only provide consultations for manuscripts in the young adult category, though I'm willing to read stories that fall on both the youngest and oldest ends of this range. While I have an affinity for science fiction and fantasy, I am willing to read a story in any genre provided we both think it would be a good fit.
Before each consultation, regardless of level, I ask that you tell me a little about your story, including a brief synopsis (ending not required!) and any particular aspects you'd like me to focus on. Each consultation also includes the opportunity for follow-up questions and clarifications via email. I do not offer phone consultations at this time.
Background & Philosophy
Science fiction and fantasy are experiencing a renaissance in modern young adult literature. Every day, I'm amazed by the creativity and level of craft new and seasoned authors bring to the genre. I'm passionate about these stories, and I'm excited to work with authors who push the boundaries of the genre and help diversify it beyond the straight, white, able-bodied norm.
I'm a public librarian by day. I spent four years as the sole selector of books for young adults in a medium-sized public library and saw circulation of these materials more than double from the time I began to the time I left. Since 2014, I've been the sole selector of all materials in all formats for kids and teens for the Austin Public Library, where I manage a budget of over $1 million. I know what teens will love and what they'll be excited to recommend to their friends.
Since 2009, I've written about young adult science fiction and fantasy at Stacked, a book blog that has become known for its insightful, critical reviews. Browsing the blog's archives (especially the Science Fiction and Fantasy tags) will give an idea of my critique style. I presented at Kidlitcon in 2013 on "Critical Reviews and Why They Matter" with my co-blogger Kelly Jensen, and I served as a Round 2 Cybils judge for young adult SFF in 2011 and 2013 and a Round 1 judge for young adult SFF in 2014, 2015 and 2017.
I've read and reported upon middle grade and YA manuscripts for Susan Chang, senior editor at Tor, since January 2012. Similar to the consultations I offer to individuals, these 2-3 page reports include notations on overall quality and a recommendation to acquire or reject.
All of this experience contributes to my ability to give you a thoughtful, insightful consultation of your work. I have a keen sense of what makes a compelling story and detailed knowledge of the current market. My goal is to help bring your work to the next level, whether it be a more polished rough draft or a final draft ready for submission to agents and publishers. My focus is on big picture aspects of your story such as characterization, plot, dialogue, world-building, pacing, tone, marketability, and the overall quality of the writing.
For information about pricing, please see the Rates page.
For more detailed information about my experience and qualifications, please see my Resume.
To learn more about manuscript consultations or to get in touch about any other topic, please Contact me.