Brent Taylor

Speculative YA/Fantasy/Sci-fi

THE DIMINISHED (April 10, 2018)

Kaitlyn Sage Patterson grew up with her nose in a book outside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. After completing her M.F.A., she moved to South Korea, where she taught English and started writing her debut novel. THE DIMINISHED will be published by HarlequinTEEN in April 2018, followed by its sequel in 2019.

When she’s not staring off into space and trying to untangle some particularly troublesome plot point, she can be found in her kitchen, perfecting the art of the macaron; or at the barn, where she rides and trains dressage horses; or with her husband, spoiling their sweet rescue dogs.

I’ve spent most of my life meandering toward a writing career (I studied creative writing in college and went on to get an MFA in poetry), but it wasn’t until I was living in South Korea in 2012 that I started to study the business of making a living as a writer. I’d written my first (deeply unmarketable and not very good) novel, and as I turned my eye to publication I realized that there was a whole heck of a lot I didn’t know. I trunked my first novel and got to work on my second, all the while studying the market, agents, and the publishing industry. Despite my months of study, I still queried THE DIMINISHED way too soon and ended up getting a lot of rejections before a very kind agent took the time to do a deep R&R with me. What I turned out didn’t end up working for her. But after I took a weekend to be disappointed, I decided to re-query an agent who’d been really helpful and wonderful throughout the whole querying process despite having been the first agent to reject THE DIMINISHED, and I sent Brent Taylor the book and a Beyoncé gif and signed with him shortly thereafter. After another round of revisions, we went out on submission with THE DIMINISHED and sold it to Lauren Smulski at HarlequinTEEN in April 2016. It will be published in April 2018.

I like to say that the one thing my MFA did for me was that it made me crave criticism, both giving and receiving. I love the process of working my way through a manuscript and looking for places where it could do more work or become tighter. I am both an extremely honest and sometimes blunt critique-giver, and a rabid fan, so if that balance works for you, we can go places!

I love working on queries, query lists, and querying strategies, and nearly everyone I’ve worked with on their query strategy has gone on to become agented.


Hello intrepid mentees! Glad you’re here! I’m looking for a hardworking, amiable mentee who craves criticism like water and is committed to making publishing a better place. I want to find a page-turner of a story that’s unique and pitchable and leaves me wanting more. I’m a sucker for food used as worldbuilding, unusual settings, and a good kissing scene.

I think it’s really important to give back and lift up. I’ve been really lucky to find some incredibly generous friends and mentors along the way, and I want to do the same for someone else.

  • Fantasy
  • Sci-Fi
  • #ownvoices

Love: love triangles cast in new and interesting lights, future tech of all kinds, really unique magic systems, impossible theft

Hate: feudalism, middle aged white dudes winning literally anything, faux-Europe, the homogenous race


  • Edit Letter (Big Picture developmental feedback)
  • Line edit (dropping notes into a Word Document)
  • Skype or phone call
  • Freestyle in chat

My preference is to read through the manuscript, send an edit letter along with the line-edited document. If my mentee would like, I’m happy to talk through the edits on Skype/phone/g-chat/whatever.

I’d love to work with someone who has a really strong work ethic and doesn’t mind my enthusiasm for the querying process. Ideally, my best mentee has a thick skin and is willing to talk through changes with which they disagree rather than just disregarding those edits. I would like to work with someone committed to bringing diversity to publishing and doing the work to understand what that really means.

I’d love to see a really well researched second world fantasy set somewhere other than Europe (though I’ll give a pass for Vikings of any kind). I’m looking for a unique project with a diverse cast that feels as natural as the world you’ve created.

I like my sci-fi grounded either on our planet or another, but with real world problems. Think more Looper/Inception/Westworld and less Interstellar. (But also, if you have the next HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE up your sleeve, I HAVE ALL THE GRABBY HANDS FOR THAT.)

Anything set in the arctic.

Give me all your capable princesses and women who look at societal expectations and say, “nah.”

Please no space operas unless it is as fun and hilarious as HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE.

Chosen one narratives.

No fae unless they are SUPER EVIL and then it’s still only a strong “meh.”

I’m not the person to read stories with cheating, sexual violence, or animal death.

Obsessions: THE QUEEN OF THE TEARLING, The X-Files, Trash King Arthur, Audrey Niffenegger’s brain, EK Johnston’s books, horses, tea, good food, etiquette books