Into the Mind of Kelsey Bowen

And we’re here once again, fellow Spekkies, and with us is editor Kelsey Bowen! Let’s take a peek into her mind today, shall we?


How did you get into writing?

I started writing short stories (sadly, they weren’t kept because floppy disks = extinct) as soon as I learned what Microsoft Works was. And reading was something I loved so much that I wanted to start creating my own characters and worlds. That love grew in me throughout my whole life and never went away. I don’t write as much as I edit and read these days because I lose myself in reading so often, but I’ll never lose that love of writing and creating new stories.


Is there a step in the writing process that you dread/loathe/wish you could throw over the side of a cliff with a mill stone tied around its neck?

As a writer, yes. I always start with a very clear picture of the beginning of a book I want to write, a fairly clear picture of what leads to the middle, and a very clear picture of how the book ends. But that space between the middle of the plot and the ending—that critical spot—takes me approximately one hundred years to figure out, and without the brainstorming of a beta reader, I’m not sure I could get through it!


If you could spend the day with one spec fic character, who would it be?

Probably Clary from The Mortal Instruments series. I think we could have some fun together.


If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Italy! I could drown myself in mass amounts of Italian food and tourist activities.


What is your favorite TV show?

My favorite TV show of all time is One Tree Hill, and I’m not embarrassed to admit it . My current favorite TV show is The Walking Dead—don’t even get me started on how much I love this show.


How many books have you read so far this year?

Less than my normal pace – maybe 8? I tend to read 1-2 books per week, including books I re-read all the time.


What subgenre of speculative is your favorite to write? Read?

As both a reader and writer, I enjoy urban fantasy the most—something that is taking place in my time and reality today. I also love to read (and write, currently) supernatural fiction that involves angels and demons, though I’m picky about how angels and demons are portrayed.


What inspires you to do what you do?

Outside of being inspired by the incredible work God does in the CBA market I work in, I’m inspired by working in the book market in general because I firmly believe that books (even and especially fiction!) can change lives. They make us believe, make us less lonely in the world, and give us an escape. They’re so precious, and being able to acquire and edit authors who are making a difference in the world one manuscript at a time? I couldn’t be happier to go on that journey with them.


Is there a step in your creative process or work life that you dread/loathe/wish you could throw over the side of a cliff with a mill stone tied around its neck?

As an acquisitions editor, yes. I think all of my fellow editors would agree that we hate having to turn down quality, wonderful manuscripts by authors we’d love to work with simply because we know the book wouldn’t sell well enough in our market for us to take it on, or some other reason why our publishing house isn’t the right fit for that manuscript or author.


What are you doing/teaching at the Realm Makers conference?

I am taking appointments with writers to see what they are working on in the speculative fic world, and am looking forward to seeing and reading what’s trending the most amongst them all right now. Very excited to connect with some new names and faces.





Kelsey Bowen is an Acquisitions Editor at Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, where she’s worked for five years. She has a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and, when she’s not editing, she loves to write fiction with a good cup of Starbucks coffee close by. She is also active in her church as a worship leader. She currently lives with her husband, their cute little baby, and her adorable Hava-doodle dog, Izzo, in Allendale, MI.

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