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Our Mentors

A.J. Sass
This 2021, A.J. Sass is mentoring Middle Grade
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A.J. Sass
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A.J. Sass (he/they) is an author, editor, and competitive figure skater who is interested in how intersections of identity, neurodiversity, and allyship can impact story narratives. He is the author of Ana on the Edge, a Booklist Editors’ Choice 2020 and ALA 2021 Rainbow Book List Top 10 for Young Readers selection, and Ellen Outside the Lines (Little, Brown, March 22, 2022), the co-author of Camp QUILTBAG* with Nicole Melleby (Algonquin, 2023), as well as a contributor to the This Is Our Rainbow: 16 Stories of Her, Him, Them, and Us (Knopf) and Allies: Real Talk about Showing Up, Screwing Up, and Trying Again (DK/Penguin Random House) anthologies. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his boyfriend and two cats who act like dogs.

Jordan Hamessley
New Leaf Literary

For Pitch Wars 2021, A.J. Sass is co-mentoring with Nicole Melleby.

Other Published Works

Allies: Real Talk About Showing Up, Screwing Up And Trying Again (contributor; DK/Penguin Random House, July 2021)
This Is Our Rainbow: 16 Stories of Her, Him, Them, and Us (contributor; Knopf Books for Young Readers, October 2021)
Ellen Outside the Lines (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, March 2022)
Camp QUILTBAG* (co-written with Nicole Melleby; Algonquin Young Readers, Spring 2023)

Favorite Books

Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake
Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
A Tale of Time City by Diana Wynne Jones

Years Mentored
2019, 2021
Latest Release