Alex Brown is a YA Horror and SFF author who’s made it a life goal to subvert the ‘bury your gays’ trope in every story she writes. She is a queer biracial Filipina American, and one of the inaugural recipients of the SCBWI’s On-The-Verge Emerging Voices Award. In addition to being a Pitch Wars and Author Mentor Match alumna, Alex has also attended the Writing Barn’s 2019 Rainbow Weekend and Futurescapes. Alex is the Showrunner’s Assistant on Supernatural and hopes to use what she’s learned to bring even more stories with diverse characters and perspectives to the big and small screen. She’s also one of the co-creators and producers of The Bridge, a haunted, folklore-filled audio drama podcast that has over 1,000,000 downloads to date!
My path to being agented is a long and winding road, but the tl;dr version of it is that it took 7 years, 6 manuscripts, and 1 podcast! I finished writing my first manuscript in 2012, won an award through SCBWI, and thought that I’d find an agent soon after which… totally didn’t happen. But I’m glad it took till 2019, because I absolutely love my agent. We first connected over The Bridge, a narrative fiction podcast that I co-created with Rebecca Mahoney (Rebecca’s debut, THE VALLEY AND THE FLOOD, is out Fall 2020 from Razorbill—check it out!). Hannah became our agent for the podcast, and we discovered that we had an excellent rapport and that our working styles matched up. I had an idea for an anthology that I wanted to edit and wound up pitching it to her, and after the pitch she offered me representation! We had The Call and I knew I couldn’t wait to work with Hannah! She has an amazing story sense and is so supportive of my ideas—and is an amazing badass to boot.
Although my journey has been a bit outside of the norm, I did go through the query process with five manuscripts prior to my offer. I have a special place in my heart for queries of all kinds and totally know what it’s like to spend years (in my case, 7), languishing in the query trenches.
I’ve attended some really cool writing workshops (shout-out to Rainbow Weekend and Futurescapes) and learned a lot of amazing story and revision elements from wonderful authors like Cory McCarthy, Amy Rose Capetta, and Scott Lynch. I’m the Showrunner’s Assistant on Supernatural, and I’ve learned a lot about the structure of stories/how to create a world and characters that people feel truly invested in. I’ve been in Pitch Wars, was an AMM Mentee in Round 5, and the podcast that I’ve co-created has over 1,000,000 downloads to date. I love thinking about stories, pulling them apart, and making them better!
I also really love query letters, just in case you don’t 😀
AMM has been one of my favorite writing experiences! Not only was I connected to my fabulous mentor, Alyssa Carlier, but I also joined a community of amazing writers who’ve become an awesome support system. I want to be a mentor to give back to a program that’s brought so many cool people into my life–and find a mentee who has a kick-ass ideas and lots of stories to put out into the world.
I love everything about stories and fully believe in their potential to change lives. One of the things I’m most passionate about is bringing more stories created by underrepresented folks into the world any way that I can, and I think AMM provides that opportunity in such a unique and exciting way.
I’m so excited to build a working relationship with my future mentee, and to be there to support them through all of publishing’s wild ups and downs! We’ll keep writing and growing together!
I love horror in any form, so if you have contemp, fantasy, sci-fi, historical, etc that also happens to be horror, please send it to me! I’d love to find thoughtful horror, queer stories, #ownvoices folklore, and/or a scary story that’s very meta and kinda campy!
- Magical Realism/Fabulism
I ABSOLUTELY LOVE: The way that The Babadook tackled grief and trauma. If you have nuanced ways to look at mental health, ESPECIALLY in horror, I wants the precious; Also: explorations of monsters/monstrosity
I ABSOLUTELY HATE: In horror movies when people in asylums are depicted as evil and unhinged. Also: antagonists with unclear/flimsy motivations (just being evil for the sake of evil, etc).
I WILL PROVIDE:
- Edit Letter (Big Picture developmental feedback)
- Line edit (dropping notes into a Word Document)
- Skype or phone call
- Freestyle in chat
I’ll definitely do a mix of an edit letter and a line edit, as I love giving feedback on big picture things but also want to leave my reactions in the MS so that my mentee knows where I have questions, if there were lines that I loved, if there were effective emotional beats, where things might be dragging, etc.
I like to give big picture notes because, at the end of the day, it’s not my manuscript—it’s my mentee’s! While I may have thoughts on structural changes and overarching revisions, the details/manner of execution should be left to my mentee. I’m down to have a skype call/phone chat/gchat, etc if there are any questions or if my mentee wants to have a brainstorming session (love those!).
Maybe they have lots of ideas already about what they’d like to change, but aren’t sure of which direction they should go, or even where to start. Or they have nothing but a vague sense that something just isn’t working in their story and need someone to help them figure it out. My ideal mentee committed to learning and improving their craft with each book, which means being open and receptive to all kinds of feedback and being ready to honestly appraise their own work.
Above all, though, I’d love to develop a long-lasting working relationship with an awesome writer! Publishing (and life) is hard, and I truly believe we can only get through it together. My ideal mentee should be ready for someone who can’t wait (but will) to shout their good news from the rooftops!
- If there’s a horror element (or it’s JUST 100% HORROR) I’m 1000000000% interested
- QUEER HORROR I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH
- Anything folklore related (ESPECIALLY #ownvoices)
- If it’s anything like THE LUMINOUS DEAD give it to me ASAP
- The ocean is terrifying and lovely. Something like that.
- Dark comedies (bonus points if it’s also horror-related)
- Anything that’s as creepily atmospheric as BIOSHOCK
- A diverse cast of characters
- If it’s fun + meta + kinda campy (like SCREAM) then it’s for me!
DO NOT SEND ME:
- Stories that involve abuse of any sort where the abuser is redeemed are not for me.
- Stories that involve Fridging (where a woman is killed to further the emotional arc of a man) are also not for me.
- I’m also not suuuuuuuper down for love triangles unless they’re queer. Also, no burying the gays. Please and thank you.
Books – The Luminous Dead, Once and Future, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
TV – Galavant, The Expanse, The Exorcist, The Haunting of Hill House
Movies – The Babadook, Get Out, Knives Out, Ready or Not, Parasite, Drop Dead Gorgeous
Musicals – Can I count Galavant here, too? Because Galavant. Also: Sweeney Todd, Hadestown, Into the Woods, Les Mis, Hamilton