britneyshaeblog.wordpress.com
@_britneyshae_

AGENT
Lydia Silver at Darley Anderson Children’s Book Agency Ltd

WRITES
YA Contemporary & YA Thriller

ON SUBMISSION

BIO

Lawyer by day, author by night, Britney S. Brouwer was born in Michigan, grew up in Minnesota, and currently lives in Ohio. Outside of writing, Britney’s many passions include hockey (go Flyers!), earl grey tea, and collecting various stationary supplies.

PUBLISHING BACKGROUND

I have been writing for nearly as long as I can remember but it wasn’t until 2016 that I decided to start taking my journey to publication seriously. I dug up a manuscript I had written back in 2014 and slowly taught myself to how properly revise. I began querying in early 2017 and sought out CPs soon after. Every round of revisions felt closer and closer but the rejections continued to pour in. Still, I couldn’t give up on this same manuscript from 2014. In Spring 2018, I was fortunate enough to become a Round 4 Author Mentor Match mentee, which was a game-changer. My mentor and I revised this manuscript all through the summer and by fall I was ready to query. I found my agent through #PitMad in early September of 2018. Although I ultimately shelved that project (for now!) it will always have a special place in my heart as the book that finally encouraged me to begin my publishing journey. Currently I am on sub with a YA contemporary and am revising a YA thriller.

EXPERIENCE

This will be my second time mentoring AMM after a wonderful first experience last spring. I majored in English literature with a Professional Writing minor in college so I have studied story structure and grammar to some extent. By day, I am an attorney, where I act as the office’s resident proof-reader. I was also an AMM mentee and learned so much from my mentor that I’m excited to continue passing on!

OVERVIEW

It’s been my goal to mentor in Author Mentor Match ever since going through the mentorship program myself and I’m excited to be back for another round. I had a wonderful experience through Author Mentor Match – not just in ultimately finding my agent, but also in building community and friendships. Further, through CPs and helping other writer friends out, mentoring other writers is something I truly enjoy. I can’t help to help make another manuscript shine!

This round I’m really on the hunt for YA thriller but I’ll also be looking for YA contemporary. I am also open to YA contemporary with light speculative elements. Basically, as long as your story takes place in “our world,” send it my way! I especially love competition stories – whether that means sports, arts, clubs, etc. – if there’s a big competition in your story, I want to see it! Said another way, if not specifically competition, I love stories about ambitious teens chasing their passions. I’m also always on the lookout for a good sibling story (and if it’s sibling competition even better!). I also love friendship stories and that includes friendship breakups or (you guessed it) friendship rivalries. I love stories where romance isn’t the focal point or where it is, it’s not a straightforward “love story,” i.e., fake dating. That said, I’m always game for a cute squishy rom-com. And as always, I’m looking for something voice-y which could make me laugh on one page and cry on the next. Specific to YA thrillers, I want a mystery that’s going to hook me from the first chapter!

  • Contemporary
  • Mystery/Thriller
  • #ownvoices
  • LGBTQIA

I’m not a huge fan of insta-love, but I love friends-to-lovers, enemies-to-lovers, or (my fave) rivals-to-lovers. I would love a twist – maybe lovers-to-enemies. I want that quirky best friend to be a major character, not a side character. For the most part, I’m open to most tropes – it’s all about how you use them.

I WILL PROVIDE:

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

WORKING STYLE

When I was on the mentee side of things, my mentor and I did at least three “big picture” passes before going onto line edits. I’m not saying I’ll do that many developmental passes with my mentee, but I will if needed! I hope my mentee is ready to work and really shake their manuscript up. That said, I want my mentee to feel comfortable in the system, so I am flexible as to how many passes we’ll do / how often we’ll do said passes / etc. I’ll also do my best to guide my mentee through the query trenches!

IDEAL MENTEE

My ideal mentee will be in a similar position to where I was when I was a mentee – totally in love with their story, but completely unsure where to go next. I was teetering between “shelve it” and “query it to all the agents and hope for the best.” Turns out my manuscript was salvageable, but just needed some more tweaking and direction. I want a mentee who will be willing to roll up their sleeves and do the work to mold their manuscript beyond what they thought possible.

SEND ME:

  • Competition/Rivalry stories (sports, arts, clubs, etc.)
  • Sibling stories
  • Friendship stories
  • Twisty thrillers (especially twisty thrillers set in small towns!)
  • Small town settings in general
  • Unique ways of telling the story (think WE WERE LIARS)
  • Stories told within a tight time constraint (for example, a story taking place in 24 hours)
  • I would love a modern, contemporary retelling of HAMLET, THE GREAT GATSBY, or REBECCA
  • I would also love contemporary retellings of fairytales, i.e., taking a fairytale and instead of basing it fantasy, basing it in “the real world”
  • I love stories with family secrets
  • Random, but I’m a sucker for juicy stories about fame/royalty/etc. – I LOVE a “rich people problems” story.
  • I am always open to stories told by diverse and LGBTQIA voices

DO NOT SEND ME:

  • Issue books (unless dealing with grief in an interesting or new way)
  • No suicide, please
  • Should go without saying but nothing racist/homophobic/sexist/etc.

FAVES

Some of my favorite books include:
A GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO MURDER by Holly Jackson
MONDAY’S NOT COMING by Tiffany D. Jackson
GROWN by Tiffany D. Jackson
I KILLED ZOE SPANOS by Kit Frick
YOU SAY IT FIRST by Katie Cortuga
TELL ME THREE THINGS by Julie Buxbaum
CITY OF GHOSTS by V.E. Schwab (Middle Grade but a good example of the sort of contemporary with speculative elements that I love)
EARLY DEPARTURES by Justin A. Reynolds
HOT DOG GIRL by Jennifer Dugan
TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE trilogy by Jenny Han

Some recent TV show faves include:
DASH & LILY
TED LASSO (if your MS mixes sports with humor and poignancy the way this show does, PLEASE SEND IT TO ME)
EMILY IN PARIS (I know, I know – but if you have a MS that’s lighthearted, fun, and makes me want to travel, I want it! Without the cheating aspect, though.)

My favorite movie of all time is Clue and a close second is Knives Out. I’m a sucker for anything Disney (give me that magical Disney feel and I’m yours), and I love ballet (either a YA ballet story or a retelling of a classical ballet would be right up my alley)! If you’re unsure about subbing to me because your story doesn’t directly fit one of my MSWL but it’s a YA contemporary/thriller, feel free to send it my way!