Hey to all my fellow Author Mentor Match hopefuls! I’m so excited to do #AMMConnect with you all! I love this blog hop idea.
My name is J.J. (aka Jessica). I’m using J.J. as a pen name because I want to keep my fiction and non-fiction works separated. I’m a wife, a mother of two, and a book nerd. I’ve always loved to read. Recently, some of my favorite reads are House of Salt & Sorrows, The Wicked Deep, 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, The Diviners, and Sea Witch. I’ve wanted to be an author since I was twelve years old. Several years ago (I’m not saying how many), I graduated from Western Michigan University with a BA in Creative Writing. When I was sixteen, I knew the topic of my first book. In April 2010, Oxford University Press published a book I co-wrote on my rare eye condition, Aniridia & WAGR Syndrome: A Guide for Patients and Families. I did this book to help those affected by Aniridia Syndrome. I could go into details about it, but it’s complicated, so I will just say it’s genetic, although I have a sporadic case (I didn’t inherit it). Aniridia Syndrome causes me to have underdeveloped eyes, including no irises (colored part of the eye). Genetically speaking, I should have blue eyes and if the lighting is right you can see a thin ring of blue on the outer edge of my pupils. Finally, because of Aniridia Syndrome, I’m visually impaired.
MY YA CONTEMPORARY FANTASY
This is the first time I’m entering #AMM. I’m excited to submit my YA Contemporary Fantasy Rhythm of the Stars, which is complete at 91k. Below are two pitches I used for the last #PitMad of 2019.
THE MAGICIANS x KEEPER When Meg has a bloody premonition & discovers she’s a witch, she must learn to harness the magic of crystals & her newfound gifts to save her new friends & herself from a parasitic phantom seeking a key to a magical realm.
When Meg discovers she’s a witch destined to eradicate a parasitic phantom before it kills again, she must learn to harness the magic of crystals to control the power within, & overcome what she's terrified of most - opening herself up to love again.
If you want to learn more about me or my books, check out my Writing Journey and Books pages.
WHY I’M ENTERING #AMM ROUND 7
I've worked on this book for several years now. I even took a two-year break from working on it because life was too busy. In the last few years, I've become more serious about finishing and publishing it. At one point, I almost self-published it, but I’m so glad I didn’t because it was not ready. I decided not to publish it because I found Authortube and began to learn so much more than I had in college. I started my platform on social media and started to meet other writers. I finally didn’t feel so alone.
Since then, I’ve met so many wonderful writer friends, including my amazing CP @kat_dennison, who has helped me improve my story and writing. Not only has Katerina critiqued several drafts, but I’ve also done two rounds with my wonderful beta readers. I’ve submitted it to Pitch Wars twice (2018 & 2019), but I was not selected. After not getting selected for Pitch Wars 2018, I did significant revisions and worked on my query and synopsis to improve them. I’m proud of the work I’ve done on it. The story has changed, and I’ve grown as a writer, but at this point, I’m honestly a little frustrated. I started to query it in September 2019 and have gotten some rejections. I’m not sure if it lacks something, if agents just aren’t interested, or if the voice is off somehow. I’d love the perspective of an experienced mentor who can help me strengthen my story and fix any issues that remain. I think getting clear confirmation of what's working and what's not will help me a great deal. I’m highly motivated and determined to improve my writing and this story, so I can get it published. Plus, I’d really love to develop a long-term friendship with a mentor and be an encouragement to them as well.
For fun, here are just a few more aesthetics. To see even more and to read some snippets from my WIP, become a member HERE.