Get to Know Our Writers: Kelly Powers

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Meet Our Writer- Kelly Powers

I think I've been with SoCal SCBWI for about 7-8 years now. You may recognize me as one of the critique group leaders for MG and YA. I joined back when there were only a handful of us from our region, meeting in a bookstore. I'm happy I found Tim Burke and the group because I've learned so much about writing, the business, and even myself. I can't pinpoint only one thing about SCBWI that impacted me the most since my entire life has been changed for the better by the organization.

The audience I write for is Young Adult, and I have completed novels in Romance and Paranormal Romance. I am currently working on a Fantasy book. For my writing space, I'm lucky I have a job as a librarian, where there is downtime and I can work on my books. Some days are busier than others, but for the most part, I am able to write at work whenever I'm not needed to help students find books or supervise classes in the library. I started writing back in Junior High, but doing so seriously about nine years ago. At first, I dabbled in Adult genres, even joined the Horror Writers Association for a time, but found my true love in both reading and writing was YA, and haven't strayed from it since.

Apart from conferences and webinars, I haven't taken any formal writing classes. I work full-time, take care of my disabled husband, and shuttle my son to and from athletic events, so there really isn't any time or budget for me to go back to school.

I write wherever and whenever I can. Most of the time, I write at my desk at work, but sometimes I can sneak some time on the couch before my Husky starts pawing at me. Also I always carry a notebook so I can write whenever inspiration strikes. Maybe someday I'll be successful enough to have a home office and library, but I'm not there yet.

My favorite project is my Paranormal Romance Wolf Girl's Guide to Taming the Beast Inside. Currently I don’t have a literary agent, but I wish I could find one who loves this book as much as I do. It's a funny, sweet, coming of age story about a teen girl learning to love and trust all parts of herself–even the wild ones– as she becomes the werewolf that nature always intended her to be.

My current WIP is a 12-book fantasy series that is essentially Avatar the Last Airbender with astrological Zodiac signs. So, instead of element bending, as in the case of Avatar, my twelve characters were born with the magic of their Zodiac God. The books center around one character’s journey at a time, and each will have a beginning, middle, and end so readers can pick up any book in the series and not be lost. I’m only on the first one at the moment, but it is an idea that I have been worldbuilding since I began writing nine years ago. Although I am not an illustrator, I did design my world maps, local maps, and the clothes my characters wear in my fantasy world for my own personal reference.

My advice for emerging writers is simple. Since most new authors claim they don't have time to write, I always suggest writing a page a day. If you can commit yourself to writing one page a day, in 365 days, you'll have a novel. 

I am a pre-published writer. Although I do not have a book published yet, I do have a contributor credit on Jonathan Maberry's The Joe Ledger Companion Novel. 

Some interesting facts you may not know about me include that as a hobby, I study dog breeds and used that knowledge when writing my Paranormal Romance. Another fun fact is my absolute favorite food is popcorn. Nothing fancy on it either. Just good ol’ butter and salt. Finally, the best feeling in the whole world is when someone loves a book I recommended. Be it student or grown up, nothing compares to knowing you’ve matched someone up with their perfect read.

I don't currently have a website, but I can always be found poking about SCBWI or by email.

If anyone needs a book rec or a comp title, reach out anytime!

Kelly Powers volunteers as one of our MG/YA critique group leaders for our SoCal region.