Meet the Team

Our Co-founders

Kat Brauer

Kat Brauer (she/her) is an avid reader, passionate philanthropist, and salaried itinerate. She invented the Mighty Pens in 2017 with the hopes that in driving others toward supporting various causes, it would also encourage her to finish her first book in almost two decades. While that has yet to manifest, she is truly grateful to continue to be part of the best community on the internet™ and to be part of something so impactful for good in the world. Black lives still matter.

Susan Dennard

Susan Dennard (Sooz) is the New York Times bestselling author of the Luminaries series, the Witchlands series, the Something Strange and Deadly series…and a few short stories throw in there too.

She hosts the famed Misfit & Daydreamers newsletter for writers and creatives everywhere.

Over the years, Sooz has run lots of charitable causes—ranging from a 5K raising money for First Books to a cross-country tour of free workshops for young writers. When Kat mentioned her idea for The Mighty Pens, Sooz was immediately all in.

Our Invaluable Volunteers

Abigail Welborn

Abigail Welborn

Tech Guru

Abigail is currently working toward traditional publication of young adult fantasy novels. She used to live in the Seattle area writing code, but retired to focus on writing. Recently, she moved to Jacksonville, FL with her husband and their two school-aged boys, to be nearer grandparents and beaches.

Having grown up watching She-Ra and Xena, she now has appointment TV with the MCU and Doctor Who. Her author idol is Robin McKinley, but she would also kill for blurbs from Mary E. Pearson, Margaret Rogerson, Naomi Novik or Susan Dennard.

She is addicted to tea, earl grey, hot. Her Instagram is mostly cats, which she acquired after moving.

kaite it a purple mushroom witch's hat and a oilslick colored tooth necklace.

Kaite Krell

Design Sage

When not engrossed in the policy, politics, and procedure that runs DC and her day job, Kaite flings herself joyfully into each new creative endeavor or adventure that comes her way and hoping that this time she’ll finally get to meet a dragon.

During November you can find her with excessive amounts of tea updating the Mighty Pens social medias, yelling encouragingly in the discord, and attempting to get words down for her most recent fantasy. At all other times she’s probably reading past her bedtime, panic sewing cosplay outfits, or dabbling about with some kind of graphic or typography.

Casey in a Star Wars rebel flight suit and helmet.

Casey Chwiecko

Spreadsheet Wizard

Casey is a book-enthusiast who spends most of her time peddling tomes to youngsters (as a librarian), herding recalcitrant cats on discord (and a full menagerie in real life), and creating fascinating worlds populated with intriguing characters (according to friends). Always willing to lend a hand, you can find Casey deploying her good sense (with a side of enabling) at work and at home in Massachusetts.

In her spare time, she might be writing, playing D&D, reading, or going on adventures with her two roommates. While no longer a ‘traditional’ 50k NaNo participant, you’ll find her still working on words and cheering others on during November. She’s been writing original fiction for just over twenty years, but fanfiction for as long as she can remember.

Paola Gaeta Ortega

Paola Gaeta Ortega

Community Volunteer

When not in her day job, Paola loves to learn about different things. Currently she is part of a mentorship program that focus on women working in the music industry. In her free time she likes to brainstorm new ideas for her writing and create short stories. Hanging out with friends, watching movies, series and k-dramas, reading and also going to concerts are part of her hobbies.

Shawnee Bysh

Shawnee Bysh

Community Volunteer

Crafter of words both in writing & reading. When not doing those, which isn’t very often, she can be found watching her favorite shows or youtubers, sewing, or playing games on computer. Another of her favorite things is to dabble in cooking and baking.

Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith

Admin Volunteer

Sarah Smith (she/her) is a voracious reader and writer, and firmly believes in the power of literature and language to change the world. When she’s not reading, writing, or volunteering for the Mighty Pens, she can be found crafting, obsessively analyzing the Marvel Cinematic Universe, collecting vintage and antique items, and caring for her menagerie of pets.

Sasha Kielman, a white woman wearing a red scarf standing in front of cherry blossom branches and a lake.

Sasha Kielman

Media Volunteer

Sasha Kielman is an attorney in Washington, DC who loves writing both professionally and personally. Her short story “Between Heart and Home” was published by Coffee With Tea Media in Living With Demons, a mental-health–focused charity anthology, and her short story “You Transfix Me Quite” was published by Brigids Gate Press in Crimson Bones, a Gothic romance anthology. In addition to serving as a volunteer with the Mighty Pens, she also serves as an editor and moderator for a fanfiction anthology.

Jenn Storey, a white woman with dark brown hair looking left, with a painted skull as big as she is on the wall behind her

Jenn Storey

Admin Volunteer

Jenn Storey (she/they) is a poet, novelist, video game writer, and digital business assistant who splits their time between the Sonoran Desert in Arizona, USA, and the Canadian Shield in Manitoba, CA. When they’re not helping entrepreneurs in their day job, they stay up late obsessing over their next story. Jenn holds an MFA in Creative Writing & Poetics from the University of Washington and their debut YA novel, Tilting Gravity, was published by Dreamsphere Books in April 2023.

a picture of Corienne Swanson, a white women with wavy blonde hair, in front of a white house and blue sky

Corienne Swanson

Community Volunteer

Corienne Swanson (she/they) is a novelist, screenwriter, narrative designer, and recent college grad from Savannah College of Art and Design. She holds a BFA in Film and Television and Dramatic Writing (which means she enjoys talking through movies just as much as she likes to write them). When she’s not working, she spends her time ogling new releases in bookstores, blasting Taylor Swift in her car, and spoiling her corgi.

Erin Page, a white woman with brown hair wearing a coral sweater, with a leafy tree in the background

Erin Page

Admin Volunteer

Erin Page is a professional editor, copywriter, and author. A graduate of the University of Michigan with a degree in Economics and International Studies, she has worked in marketing, government contracting, and technical writing. She has published short stories, essays, and articles in several venues, including District Lines, Mytholog, and the Historical Novels Review. When she isn’t busy preparing her first novel for querying, you can find her touring historic landmarks or relaxing at the nearest winery. She lives with her family in Maryland.

Asteria, a white woman with dark hair, sitting with her back against a bookcase full of books

Asteria Gonzalez

Community Volunteer

Hailing from central Texas (yeehaw), Asteria has a love for sunny days and adventurous stories. By day, she is a graduate student, and by night, she is a writer of fantasy and horror novels. She has been with The Mighty Pens since the olden days (2017) and doesn’t see an end to the chaos and goodwill anytime soon.

A grey bunny rabbit in a field of green grass


Community Volunteer

Sometimes known as Dried Leaves Boiled, Leaves (they/them) has been writing short stories for as long as they can remember, and has started working on novels more recently. When they’re not in their own fantasy worlds, they play music, video games, and TTRPGs, and often try to combine all three to improve their characters and worldbuilding. They live in northern England, so their life also involves complaining about the weather, drinking hot chocolate instead of tea, and desperately trying to remember US time zone conversions. They will take every opportunity to talk about cats and Eurovision, and they never got the hang of Thursdays.

Jillian, a white woman with brown hair (blue at the ends) reading a book in front of a red bush.


Community Volunteer

Jillian spends most of her time studying, writing, making fun of horror movies, doing crafts, and loving Taylor Swift. A New Yorker all her life, she can also be found at a theater or doing bookshop hops around the city. You can find her on the gram at @thegreenreader.