Robert H. Pruett, Publisher and Owner

Robert H. Pruett​
President and Publisher
As a veteran teacher of English, creative writing, and journalism at the high school, college, and university levels, working with emerging and professional writers has been one of Robert’s passions for over four decades. His broad experience as a writer and teacher gives him a sensitive understanding of the writing, editing, and publishing processes.

In addition to founding Brandylane in 1985 and Belle Isle Books in 2010, Robert founded and served as editor of Pleasant Living, a magazine for Virginia’s River Country, from 1989 to 2016, and also founded and edited V Magazine for Women from 2004 to 2012. Although a lover of the classics, memoir, biography, dystopian fiction, poetry, and works focusing on social justice, his interests are far-ranging, and he has published hundreds of books in diverse genres and subject matter. Robert is a published essayist and poet and holds a BA in English from Georgia State University and an MA in English and interdisciplinary humanities from Virginia Commonwealth University. He lives in Richmond with his wife, Tanya, and their Boxer, Harley.

Grace Ball, Brandylane Publishers

Grace Ball
Administrator, Project Manager, and Acquisitions Editor
Before joining the Brandylane team in 2015, Grace lived in Charlottesville, where she attended the University of Virginia. While there, Grace earned a bachelor’s degree in English literature. In her role as administrator and project manager, she’s able to indulge her affinity for list-making on a daily basis. When she’s not processing a book order, sending an invoice, or emailing an author, you can find Grace baking a cake or reading yet another book recommended by her fabulous coworkers.

Michael Hardison, Brandylane Publishers

Michael Hardison
Designer and Project Manager
Book designer, coffee addict, and Gryffindor, Mike joined the Brandylane team in 2017 shortly after a whirlwind tour of LA with his partner, Eric, that included appearing on AND winning America’s Funniest Home Videos! When he’s not designing books or dodging llamas and emus, Mike can be found reading, playing with his pups, Parker and Hitchcock, and obsessing over Rupaul’s Drag Race. With a liberal arts degree from James Madison University and graphic design certification from the California Institute of the Arts, Mike brings a well-rounded perspective to his work as project manager and designer.

Christina Kann, Brandylane Publishers

Christina Kann
Publicist, Project Manager, and Acquisitions Editor

Christina is a Hufflepuff, writer, publicist, outdoors enthusiast, cat mom, and generally okay human being. She graduated from Old Dominion University with a degree in English linguistics, and encourages you to read up on the Linguistic Facts of Life. She worked as a freelance editor before joining Brandylane in January 2017. A self-proclaimed science fiction and fantasy nerd (though she‘ll read anything), Christina spends her time outside the office reading and writing with her cats, Penny and Dante, in their Richmond, VA home. Follow Christina on Instagram or Twitter, or visit her website, Writing Skyward

Haley Simpkiss, Brandylane Publishers

Haley Simpkiss
Office Assistant, Project Manager, and Acquisitions Editor
Haley graduated from the New Hampshire Institute of Art in 2014 with a BFA in creative writing. A longtime resident of northern Virginia, she moved to Richmond in late 2016 when she couldn’t take the DC metro traffic anymore. Haley is an enthusiast of speculative fiction and will recommend the short stories of Jorge Louis Borges to anyone who asks. Her favorite projects to work on are books for children, but no matter the genre, she loves to watch her authors’ books take shape from concept to first printing.

Erin Harpst, Brandylane Publishers

Erin Harpst
Publisher’s Assistant, Project Manager, and Editor
Erin joined Brandylane in 2012 after receiving a BA in English literature from Yale University and a certificate from the Columbia Publishing Course. Having grown up on a steady diet of children’s books, Erin believes that all kids deserve good books to read, and always delights in seeing a new picture book or middle-grade novel find its way across her desk. A lifelong resident of Virginia’s Tidewater region, she enjoys observing local wildlife, preparing (and eating) seafood, and going on unavoidably short walks on the tiny beach near her home in Newport News.

Mary-Peyton Crook, Brandylane Publishers

Mary-Peyton Crook
Project Manager
Mary-Peyton was born and grew up in RVA, and she graduated from JMU in 2009 with degrees in English and Psychology. She worked in bookstores, libraries, and as a freelance editor and writer before joining Brandylane in June of 2018. Mary-Peyton likes fantasy, gritty southern noir, magical realism, creative nonfiction, short stories — and “just fiction in general.” Find Mary-Peyton on Instagram reading books all around Richmond!

Paloma Ferraz​
Intern
Paloma is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University pursuing her B.A. in English with minors in creative writing, psychology, and music. When she’s not tapping away in her favorite writing Chrome extension, she’s being inspired by the writings of Beat generation novelist Jack Kerouac, playing Chopin on piano, studying foreign languages, or biking around Richmond. Feel free to follow Paloma on Twitter, or visit her website, Paloma Lourdes.

Kwame Daniels
Intern

Kwame is a senior undergraduate at Virginia Commonwealth University, working toward a bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in creative writing. They spend much of their time pickling vegetables, researching Black American spirituality, and hiking with their dog. They have been a tutor, a chef, a caregiver, and a fudge-maker. Kwame loves magical realism and Toni Morrison’s way of crafting stories in the English language.

Corinne Martin
Intern

Corinne is currently attending James Madison University, where she is working toward her double B.A. in English and Native American history, culture, and narratives, with a minor in environmental humanities. Outside of classes, Corinne enjoys spending time with her large family, reading, writing, and enjoying the beauty of nature. You can follow Corinne on Instagram.

Tanya Pruett, Brandylane Publishers

Tanya Pruett
Project Manager and Editor
Tanya has been providing promotional services, project management, author support, and editing at Brandylane since 2006. Tanya attended Oberlin College, lived abroad in Ireland and Japan, and ultimately graduated from Bluefield College in 2007. With more than twenty years’ management experience in human services, human resources, and international education, Tanya has a passion for promoting our authors and a particular fondness for children’s books that teach tolerance and understanding. She also loves cooking fresh from the farmer’s market, photography, travel, and world music, as well as reading memoirs and books about social justice and personal development. Tanya lives in Richmond with her husband, Robert, and their sweet dog, Harley.

Marie Stephens, Brandylane Publishers

Marie Stephens
Accountant
Marie is a magician with the numbers and has been with Brandylane in our Kilmarnock, Virginia, office since 1993. She lives in Irvington, Virginia.

Annie Tobey, Brandylane Publishers

Annie Tobey
Senior Editor
Annie holds a B.A. in English from the University of Richmond, where she also earned secondary teaching certificates in English, speech, and drama. She published her first book in 1990, For Any Young Mother Who Lives in a Shoe, and has published numerous articles in local and national periodicals. She lives in Richmond.

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