Alex Brown (she/her) is a YA Horror writer who loves rooting for the final girl—especially if she’s also a monster. Alex 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 passionate about bringing 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! When she’s not writing, she loves to bother her cat, Artemis, who mostly tolerates her.
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, Hannah Fergesen!
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 Feb 2021 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 them, and after the pitch they offered me representation! We had The Call and I knew I couldn’t wait to work with Hannah! They’re a badass, have an amazing story sense, are so supportive of my ideas. I’ve truly found the best champion for me and my stories, and it was totally worth the wait!
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.
Nowadays, I’m currently revising my F/F YA Comedic Horror manuscript with the goal of being on sub in early 2021 and absolutely love everything about this wild, demon-filled story!
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 so many awesome authors who are too smart for their own good.
By day, I’m the Showrunner’s Assistant on Netflix’s upcoming Resident Evil TV adaptation. I’ve had the honor of working with and learning from some really cool and ridiculously talented screenwriters. I believe that there’s a lot of cool crossover in the way we tell stories with TV/Film and books and use the things I’ve learned from my job to help shape the stories I tell.
I’m fascinated by story structure and think about how to create a world and characters that people feel truly invested in way more than anyone probably should. I’ve been in Pitch Wars and was an AMM Mentee in Round 5. But my favorite thing is that I got to be an AMM Mentor in Round 7 and loved everything about my experience. I’m stoked to be back and so ready for Round 8!!!
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 was most recently a mentor in Round 7 and had an absolute blast helping my mentee transform her story into something completely different, while still keeping its heart and central themes in-tact. I love being able to help other writers, and making friends, and am so excited to be back as a mentor for Round 8! I’m ready to find another mentee who has 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 tv shows/movies/books 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!
Here are some things I’m looking for:
If your book is queer, features a diverse cast of characters, and is equal parts scary and funny, please send it to me!
If the ideal time to read your book would be during the entire month of October, send it to me!
If you scared yourself while writing it—PLEASE SEND IT TO ME!!!
- Urban/Contemporary Fantasy
I LOVE 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. And/or, if you use ghosts in the same way that Bly Manor did, please come find me. Things I also dig: explorations of monsters/monstrosity, unreliable narrators, and possession (whether it’s a person or like a doll)!
I HATE in horror movies when people in asylums are depicted as evil and unhinged. Also, any sort of victim-blaming nonsense.
If you do submit a vampire story to me, those vampires better not be pale as hell!!!
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 like to start with big picture thoughts first and drill down from there are the revision process goes on. I think it’s important to have a conversation with my mentee first to discuss the broader revision ideas that I have in mind and see if our vision aligns. I also love to brainstorm during these chats and bat ideas/thoughts back and forth. To me, this process is highly collaborative, and it’s also driven by what my mentee wants their story to be. I can throw out fifty ideas, but at the end of the day the ones I want to focus on/help my mentee work into their manuscript are the things that they’re most passionate and excited about.
After we’ve had our initial conversation and I have a better idea of what revisions will look like, I’ll craft that edit letter and send it along! If there’s a tv show or movie that feels like something my mentee is trying to do, I’ll also strongly urge that they watch a certain episode or the film in order to see how a certain plot element/character/reveal/theme is carried out in another piece of media. I really do think we can learn a lot about writing books from different sorts of media and try to incorporate that into the edit letter when I can.
Once we get past the first revision, I’ll do a line edit pass and also leave some comments in the MS. Some will be about what could still be fixed up, but for the most part it’ll be me fangirling over how awesome all the changes are and how badass my mentee is!
I’m always available if my mentee needs to chat in any way that makes them feel comfortable. Communication is key, though! If you don’t want to Skype and only ever want to IM, that’s cool! Just let me know and I’ll adjust to you!
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 because I have to) to shout their good news from the rooftops!
- QUEER HORROR I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH
- If it’s anything like THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE give it to me ASAP
- A fun horror take on a concept that’s usually a different genre (like HAPPY DEATH DAY and time-loops or FREAKY with body swaps) would also be a scream
- If your story involves ANYTHING FROM FILIPINO FOLKLORE PLEASE SEND IT!!!
- Dark comedies! If your book is like ELECTION but also horror I WANT IT!!!
- Anything as ridiculously funny as WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS would be great!
- Anything that’s as creepily atmospheric as BIOSHOCK
- A diverse cast of characters
- If it’s fun + meta + kinda campy + horror then it’s for me!
- Super down for fun, diverse takes on werewolves and vampires
- Bonus points if your werewolves are cool and different, like on Netflix’s The Order
- The ocean is terrifying and lovely. Something like that.
- Also, I love a good mystery and/or thriller, so if you have anything that can be comp’d to KNIVES OUT, PLEASE SEND IT TO ME!!!
- If it has the feel of a found footage movie, I’m automatically in!
DO NOT SEND ME:
- Stories that involve abuse of any sort where the abuser is redeemed are not for me.
- I’ve tried to get in Fae, but it’s just not my thing!
- I love sci-fi and fantasy but I’m not really looking for it this round. There are lots of other mentors who are down, so please submit to them instead!
- If there’s a romance in your story that can be comp’d to Reylo, I’m not the right mentor for you.
- Stories that revolve around suicide are difficult for me.
Books: The Only Good Indians, Mexican Gothic, The Luminous Dead, Rules for Vanishing, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Hide and Seeker
TV: The Exorcist (this show is SO GOOD please watch it), The Haunting of Hill House, What We Do in the Shadows, Evil, Galavant
Movies: The Babadook, Knives Out, Ready or Not, Parasite, Drop Dead Gorgeous, It Follows, The Final Girls, Happy Death Day, Freaky, The Last Exorcism
Games: Resident Evil (had to hehe), BioShock, anything related to Pokemon and Digimon
Musicals: Can I count Galavant here, too? Because Galavant. Also: Sweeney Todd, Hadestown, Into the Woods, Les Mis