Mentor Jasmine Skye

www.jasmine-skye.com
@jasmineinskye

AGENT
Mary C Moore, Kimberly Cameron & Associates

WRITES
YA & Adult Queer Fantasy

ON SUBMISSION

BIO
Jasmine Skye is queer-romantic, grayace, bigender fantasy author. S/he especially loves complex secondary worlds with LGBTQIA+ characters who get to go on heroic adventures and claim their own happy endings. S/he’s a voracious reader, a hobbyist cosplayer, and a Youtuber.

PUBLISHING BACKGROUND
I began my traditional publishing journey in November of 2017 when I wrote the first draft of a Greek mythology-inspired fantasy. I entered the Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing program in January 2018 and began to really learn how to revise. I started to query that Greek fantasy in winter 2019, got very little in the way of requests, revised it again as my MFA thesis in the late summer/early fall of 2019, queried again (for a total of over 80 queries), then shelved the novel.

Meanwhile, in November 2019, I wrote the first draft of a witch YA novel. I revised it twice in late winter and spring 2020, queried it about 20 times, and got an offer from my agent in August 2020. I majorly revised the witch YA with my agent several times and have been on-and-off submission since October 2020. It’s been a real rollercoaster that I can’t share publicly (but will happily share with my future mentee.) All I will say is that I’ve learned a lot about what publishers are looking for in YA fantasy right now and I am ready to spread the knowledge.

EXPERIENCE
I received an MFA in Creative Writing Popular Fiction from the Stonecoast Program—a top-ranked low-residency graduate program. My final year there, I was the Pop Fic ambassador and mentored new students coming into the program.

Additionally, I taught at creative writing summer camps and workshops for 5 years. I have several high school students that I’m coaching in writing, one of which I’ve been working with since she was in 5th grade.

I stay engaged and involved in the online book/writing community, especially with my Twitter group the #QuokkaCrew. Many of my fellow quokkas have been receiving agent offers and book deals recently and I’m excited to see that number grow.

I was also privileged to be an AMM mentor last round and I’m so excited to return again this year!

 

OVERVIEW
I am where I am today because of the amazing mentors I’ve had throughout my writing journey—from my high school creative writing teacher to my college capstone instructor to my mentors and thesis advisor at my MFA program. I love how writing communities emphasize forming genuine relationships. Though I would be your mentor, I would also love to become your friend, your cheerleader, and eventually your peer in the publishing world.

In a nutshell, I’d love to find a mentee who wants to form a genuine relationship that will last far past AMM. Someone who believes, like I do, that part of our duty as writers is to help enact social change. I like to see fantastical worlds and societies that showcase equality and justice for the unheard and unrepresented. And I want a mentee who is willing to put in the work to really revise–because if there’s one thing I’ve learned from my experiences with traditional publication, there is always more to work to be done.

MENTORING GENRES
Young Adult, Accepts Graphic Novels

  • Fantasy
  • Urban/Contemporary Fantasy

My home has always been medieval fantasy, both European and non-European. I am drawn toward royalty, court politics, and knighthood. Creative magic systems are my bread-and-butter.

In the contemporary fantasy space, I like when the fantastical is embedded in modern society. I love a magic school story.

I’m also happy to look at other forms of fantasy, such as historical fantasy, space/science fantasy, and any genre-bending stories with fantasy tropes.

I’m a sucker for all flavors of queer romance (including with ace/aro characters!)

Also happy to work on a graphic novel! I’m not an artist, but I did take a graphic novel writing class for my MFA and I’m an avid reader of graphic novels/manga/manhwa/manhua.

 

I WILL PROVIDE:

  • Edit Letter (Big Picture developmental feedback)
  • Skype or phone call

WORKING STYLE
I’m a big fan of verbal communication, though I am happy to accommodate depending on mentee needs. I typically prefer a big-picture edit letter followed by a Zoom/Skype call to go over it together and brainstorm revision ideas.

I can be blunt with my critique, but I always try to point out what I enjoyed as well. I want to help my mentee make their novel best for their own vision, not mine.

I’m not the type to sit down and do true line editing, but I will point out any patterns I’ve noticed, such as filler words or grammatical errors.

After we’ve gotten the novel to a polished form, I would love to help my mentee develop a good list of agents to query and create a strong query package.

And I’m happy to help my mentee brainstorm any future ideas! I want this to become a working relationship for a long time, even past the AMM experience.

IDEAL MENTEE
My ideal mentee is communicative and loves to ask questions. I love to collaborate over video calls, so I’d prefer a mentee who’s comfortable in that environment. I’d love a mentee who doesn’t get defensive, but also one who’s willing to take my editorial suggestions and twist them into something that fits their own voice and vision for the novel.

SEND ME:

  • queer heroes from any side of the LGBTQIA+ spectrum
  • interesting magic systems
  • royalty and court intrigue
  • strong hierarchy (whether by nobility or in a military system or otherwise)
  • magic and/or military school
  • unlikely heroes
  • mistaken identity / hidden identity
  • a modern take on the peasant-to-king trope
  • fake dating / fake relationship
  • arranged marriage / marriage-of-convenience
  • love triangles that end in a poly relationship or throuple

DO NOT SEND ME:

  • heteronormative worlds
  • patriarchal societies (even if the story is about tearing it down, I’m just not a fan)
  • grimdark or dystopic worlds
  • heavy horror elements (light horror/dark fantasy is fine)
  • main character struggling with mental health for the majority of the book (some is fine, I just can’t deal with it long-term)

FAVES

Some of my favorite stories include:

  • Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
  • Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa
  • The Untamed / MDZS and other works by Mo Xiang Tong Xiu
  • Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith
  • Tamora Pierce’s Tortall universe
  • Check Please by Ngozi Ukazu
  • The Singing Hills novellas by Nghi Vo
  • Ancillary Justice (though more especially its sequels) by Ann Leckie
  • Hikaru no Go by Yumi Hotta
  • Hayao Miyazaki’s movies especially Castle in the Sky, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, and Spirited Away