Welcome to Waypoint Author Academy

Waypoint Author Academy is your first step on the journey to becoming a confident writer and savvy business person.

Because whether you’re blazing your own trail in self publishing, or are pursuing the well trodden traditional route, at the end of the day you are still in a business.

Here at Waypoint our goal is blend writing, publishing, and healthy mindset to help you become a powerhouse publishing professional and the author of binge-worthy books your ideal readers can’t get enough of.

Waypoint is the place to be if:

  • you are brand new to writing/publishing and want to be sure to start out on the right foot
  • you have been in the industry for awhile and are overwhelmed by all the options and apps and channels for authors to publish and market
  • you need a quick refresher or reality check to get you out of your head and back into the flow
  • you want quality information from industry professionals who you can trust to guide you with honesty, integrity, and compassion

Waypoint is absolutely not the place to be if:

  • you are looking for a magic bullet or quick-fix to game the system and boost your vanity metrics only
  • you want all the readers and think your books are for everyone
  • you are not ready to implement long-game strategies, and attract only the ideal readers to your books

Campus Tour

Waypoint Author Academy is a virtual learning hub designed specifically to help fiction authors build long lasting and profitable careers.

In the online space non-fiction and fiction authors are often lumped together in articles about publishing and marketing but the frustrating truth is that they are not even close to the same.

Waypoint focuses on marketable genre fiction and authors who want to produce quality books for a voracious audience.

Take a look around and see if Waypoint is a good fit for you!

The Adventure Starts Here…


Why Working With a Pro Cover Designer Matters for Your Book Marketing and Sales

Readers judge books by their covers. If you’re a self-published author, it’s crucial to hire a pro cover designer to help your book get the attention it deserves.

If you’re a traditionally published author, your publisher will handle all aspects of your publishing, including hiring your cover designer. As a trad author, you may not get a say in this aspect of the creative process. Because of that, this article is primarily aimed at authors who self-publish. 

Let’s jump into the ins and outs of cover design with a pro.

Can’t I Just Create a DIY Book Cover?

There’s no shortage of online design tools you can use to create book covers. Canva, Adobe Spark, Snappa, and similar tools offer optimized templates, images, graphics, and text placement tools for creating covers for eBooks. Or, if you’re feeling fancy, it’s possible to design your own cover in Photoshop.

If you naturally have an eye for design, that’s a plus–and you can definitely try your hand at making a cover. But you might not fully understand the design trends that help books sell in a specific genre or subgenre. 

Pro Cover Designers Understand the Design Factors That Help Books Sell

There’s an art to creating book covers that sell within their genres and subgenres. For example, a cover that might sell an historical romance novel won’t sell urban shifter fantasy. Even text and graphical elements can detract from reader interest if the design doesn’t fit well with books on a virtual (or literal) shelf.

Your pro designer serves more than one purpose. Not only should they be able to create beautiful covers for your books; they should also know the publishing industry well enough to guide you through the design process. You’ll want to interview designers who have experience working in your genre. 

Establishing Trust With Your Cover Designer

A huge factor in your relationship with your cover designer is the trust you establish from the beginning. Yes, as a self-published author, you have the final say on your covers. But you’re hiring a designer to help you navigate concepts that fit your genre, in addition to actually creating the covers.

Consider hiring a designer who isn’t necessarily a “yes person”, but who will gently push back if your design concept doesn’t go over well in your genre. As the author, you can choose not to take their advice, but it’s important to consider their industry experience. 

Finally, if you don’t trust the cover designer you’ve hired, part ways with them. This process isn’t set in stone. If you aren’t happy with how your cover is shaping up, move on until you find the right person for the job.


The Freefall: Letting Go Of Perfectionism During Drafting

Sending an imperfect (or even *gasp* incomplete) first draft to your editor feels a little bit like getting pushed out of an airplane before you’ve psyched yourself up for the jump. 

I know this because I recently turned an incomplete first draft in to MY editor, Allie (in case you haven’t already seen or heard me mention this, Allie and Jo are my editors on the fantasy series I’m working on). 

As a writer, my track record has been “spend four years writing one book, then revise it at least three times before sending it for the first round of developmental edits”. But I’m a series author now, and I have a publication schedule to stick to. So endless revisions are no longer a luxury I can afford. 


But let’s keep going with this skydiving metaphor, yes? 

Perfectionism feels like your parachute. (Spoiler alert: it’s not!)

By subjecting my works-in-progress to revision after relentless revision, I create an illusion that I’m making my own parachute. After all, if I turn in the perfect manuscript to my editor, that means I’ll have a much softer landing and I won’t need to revise as much afterward…right? 

Not exactly. 

When you write your first draft, you’re largely in an echo chamber of your own making. Sure, you may have friends who look over bits and pieces of your rough draft (I do, and it keeps the creation process fun for me). You might even do a Story Mapping Call with your editor or coach to round out your ideas (I do that, too). But at the end of the day, writing your first draft is a lot of you, alone in your own head, with no one but your characters. 

Revising over and over just gets you stuck in a loop, thinking you’re going to write your own way out of needing to make major edits later. Is that possible? Yes, but it’s not probable, and you shouldn’t drag your creation process out because you’re banking on that outcome. 

Your real parachute is the editor’s feedback. 

Your editor’s notes, and the actual revision process, make up the real parachute that floats you safely back to earth after the jump. When you’ve spent so much time in your head creating this amazing story, you need someone to gently take it out of your hands and look at it with an objective eye. 

It’s going to feel really weird to let that book go sooner than you feel comfortable with passing it on. There’s no way around that. 

When I gave my book to Allie, incomplete (can you imagine, a first draft being incomplete? pfft), I wasn’t expecting to have a visceral reaction. But I literally felt like I was falling. It felt even stranger to agree to NOT touch it again until after she’d finished with the editorial notes. 

But here we are. And I’m still alive. 

So before you take your own leap, there are three important things you need to remember. 

1. You can’t make a first draft perfect. Period. 

I know it’s every author’s dream to turn around a perfect first draft that only needs minimal edits. That would be amazing. BUT, it’s not likely to happen. Should you do your best on draft one? Heck yeah. But you should also allow it to be imperfect. 

Any writer who has been in the trenches will tell you that all first drafts are just rough. No matter how many punches you try to pull, that’s just the truth. So embrace it and find an editor who accepts an imperfect first draft without judgment, and with wholehearted dedication to helping you make the story the best it can be in its final form. 

(And remember: an editor who expects a good first draft and judges the author is a terrible editor. Fire them immediately.) 

2. You need practice letting go of your projects. 

It’s good practice to stick to deadlines. A solid deadline forces your hand and makes you move on to the next step of the storytelling process, whether you believe you’re ready for it or not. (You’ll never feel like you are.) 

When you let go of a project “early”, you’ll feel (very) out of control, but that’s the point. Trying to control too much about your process will backfire, because perfection isn’t possible. Which brings me to #3…

3. Perfectionism is self-sabotage. 

I’ve used every excuse in the book to hold onto perfectionistic behaviors. See if these sound familiar: 

  • I just want my story to be the best it can be! 
  • I have high standards–I’m just sticking to them.
  • My story has to be [XYZ] before I can send it off.
  • I can save the editor some work if I run through this again.
  • If I just revise again, I can go straight to an ARC release! 

Don’t analyze each excuse too closely. They all feel valid when you’re using them. Instead, ask yourself this question: what is the end result of each excuse to practice perfectionism? 

The end result is a delay in your process. Which translates to self-sabotage. 

Self-sabotage feels like comfort when you’re doing it. Sure, it feels really good to revise that book again (either that, or I’m just weird because I like revising). But what’s it going to feel like when you end up moving your release date because you waited so long for the first editorial round? 

Keep your endgame in mind, and it’ll be a bit easier to leave that comfort zone and pass your draft on for editing. Even after all is said and done and your book is on the shelves, you’ll always circle back to your completed story with things you wish you’d done differently. 

Need help letting go of your draft? 

We’ve got you covered. Schedule a chat to learn more about Waypoint’s coaching and editing services. 


How Layering Your Edits Can Make the Revision Process Smoother

When it comes to editing your book, there’s more than one approach to the revision process. Some writers work through their manuscript from beginning to end, in chronological order. Others might work backward, one chapter at a time. Another efficient way to conduct revisions is by layering your edits.

Let’s consider what layering your edits might look like.

How to Determine Your Editing Layers 

When you work with a developmental editor, you’ll often get an editorial letter and/or detailed notes at the end of the developmental process. These notes will likely detail several areas throughout your story that need extra attention. That’s going to look different for every writer, but some of these issues could include:

  • Story threads that need to be present throughout the manuscript
  • Character interactions that need to be more consistent
  • Hints or foreshadowing you need to add
  • Actions, responses, and interactions that should be more in-character
  • Plot points that need to be tightened 

When it’s time to start revising, use your editor’s notes to make a master list of issues you need to address in your manuscript. Then, use it as a map that guides you through each layer of the revision process.

Layering Edits Allows You to Focus on One Story Thread at a Time

Correcting one story thread at a time is an effective way to move through your editorial process quickly. If you’re working through revisions after your developmental edit, it’s critical that you consider layering edits to maintain consistency throughout the process.

What I mean by consistency is that if you’re threading a particular theme through the story, you want to follow that through from beginning to end. Layering can help you focus on one thread at a time so you don’t get lost in other details along the way.

Layering Edits Can Prevent Unnecessary Rewrites

Just like getting lost in details, it’s a little too easy to get caught up in unnecessary rewrites (guilty…very guilty). If you layer your revision process and make a clear plan for the parts of your novel you plan to edit, it might help keep you on track to meet your deadlines.

This method is particularly useful if you’re writing long books with vast worlds. Making a seemingly small adjustment in one chapter could result in many, bigger changes as you go along. If you have a map to guide the process, you might be able to avoid a major detour.

Layering Edits Helps You Stay Focused on the Big Picture

As you move through revisions, you want to keep your focus on the big picture: completing your novel. It’s easy to get tangled in a web of extensive rewrites when you’re really supposed to be refining your existing story, so use your list of edit layers to keep yourself on track. 

Most importantly, remember that there are no hard and fast rules for how to approach the editing process. The most important thing is to finish your book.

If you need to talk through how to layer your edits, Allie and Jo can help. Get in touch with us here.


Writing Disabled Characters: 3 Tropes to Avoid

With the rise of social media and the internet, marginalized groups have been able to create online platforms and share their experiences. With all of this new information cycling the web, and authors wanting to diversify their casts of characters, it can be difficult to make sure that you are representing a character that is a member of a marginalized group in a respectful way.

There have been many depictions of disabled people in literature throughout the years, some being more respectful than others. Some good examples that come to mind immediately are: Turtles All The Way Down by John Green, which depicts mental illness beautifully and draws on Green’s own experience, and the wildly popular Wonder by R.J Palacio (although I would argue that the movie didn’t do the best job at representation, as they overlooked some details of the main character’s disability). There are plenty of thoughtful and honest representations of disabled characters, but there are also plenty of disrespectful and dishonest representations.

So here’s the question: How do I make sure that my character avoids harmful tropes and stereotypes? Well, the best way is to listen to other people who have that disability. However, as a general rule, here are three harmful stereotypes that you best avoid.

Number One: The ‘Has No Life’

This character is pretty self-explanatory. They have absolutely no life whatsoever. They have no personality, and are only there so that you can say that you have a character with a disability in your book. This character has no hobbies or interests of their own. Their main purpose in the narrative is to make your protagonist feel better about their own life, as they realize there are people far worse off than they are.

This is harmful for several reasons. First off, having characters with little to no personality won’t help any story, no matter what the plot is. Second of all, this trope presents people with disabilities as pitiable, only good for looking down on or making able-bodied people feel better about themselves.

There are definitely ways to give your main character a eureka moment where they realize that their life isn’t so bad after all. This moment shouldn’t come at the expense of disabled people.

Number Two: The ‘Tragic Fall From Grace’

Sometimes, perhaps through an accident, a war, or an unexpected illness, people find themselves with a disability. This can be a challenging and daunting event that requires a lot of adjustment. I have definitely read some books that portray this struggle really thoughtfully, but I also have read books that are very insensitive.

This trope isn’t so much something to avoid, but something to be cautious of.

Is this character learning to live with their disability and cope with their changed self, or does this character exist so that they can be looked down on by everyone else?

Once again, the difference between thoughtful representation and disrespectful representation boils down to this question: Is this character there to be pitied, or are they there to grow as a character and have their own journey?

Pay special attention if you want to write on this topic, as it can be written beautifully.

Number Three: The ‘Inspiration Porn’

This one is probably my least favorite trope. I’m sure a lot of us have heard the phrase ‘inspiration porn’ without knowing fully what it means. Isn’t it a good thing that people with disabilities are able to rise up, beat the odds, and inspire others as they do it?

That all sounds great, but this trope isn’t about disabled people, not really. It’s about what disabled people can do for non-disabled people. At it’s core, this trope is about able-bodied people being inspired by their non-able-bodied counterparts. This doesn’t sound so bad at first, but allow me to elaborate further on the two forms this trope comes in, and you’ll see why it actually sucks.

The first is summed up by this example: One time, I saw a news headline about a girl with Down Syndrome who was asked to prom by one of her classmates. The article was clearly framing the kid who asked her out as a hero for being willing to ask out a kid with a disability. Of course I’m not here to hate on that, and I’m really happy for both people in that situation, but the way people talked about it was… interesting. Able-bodied people should not get extra special praise for treating people with disabilities like people. That’s not how it works. If your characters are treating people with disabilities with basic respect and you are framing it as if they did a heroic deed, you might want to reevaluate.

The second, is the disabled person who can magically do everything. They serve as inspiration to all the able-bodied people trying to pursue their dreams, because if a disabled person can do it, surely they can do it too. The problem with this trope is that disabled people should not have to prove themselves in order to be worthy of respect. Another problem with this trope is that it enforces the idea that, unless a disabled person goes above and beyond, they are worthy of pity. We don’t treat able-bodied people who live mundane ordinary lives with pity- why should we treat everyday ordinary disabled people with pity?

Overall, the golden rule is this: Listen to disabled people and understand that while they do have their own special limitations, that doesn’t mean they should be treated with less dignity and respect than their non-disabled counterparts.

If your disabled character has limits, but also has dreams, goals, a personality, likes and dislikes, everything that makes up any other character; you’re off to a good start. And hey, we can always use more authors who are willing to dedicate themselves to diversifying literature.

~ Jesse Perry



Creative Control in Self-Publishing: What Does it Really Mean?


There are many different reasons authors choose to self-publish. One of the most prominent is the idea of creative control. Many self-published authors are invested in retaining a greater amount of control over their published works than a traditional publisher might allow. 

But what does creative control really mean, and what does it consist of? While self-publishing is right for many authors, there are many misconceptions surrounding what it means to be in control. Let’s deconstruct this idea and clear some of the fog, shall we?

Creative control requires: 

  • Exceptional instincts for storytelling
  • A strong publishing team that understands your genre and the industry at large
  • The ability to delegate editing and marketing tasks 
  • Willingness to learn the ins and outs of your market 
  • Tenacity and perseverance 

If you’re considering self-publishing and want to know more about what’s involved in a successful indie author career, let’s dive in deeper.

Exceptional Storytelling Instincts 

Because you’re taking the reins of your own author life, you want to be confident in your storytelling abilities. A self-published author assumes all the responsibilities of a publishing house. That means you need to not only have a good story up your sleeve–you also need a keen instinct on what readers are buying in your genre. 

Keep in mind that you don’t have to be the expert on your story or your market. But, you need to have your finger on the pulse of things enough that you can build a team around you who can help you run with your ideas.

A Team of Experts 

Creative control doesn’t mean calling all the shots with zero input from other professionals. While you have the final call on every decision you make for your author career, you need a team that can help you take your stories to the next level, then get them in front of the right readers. 

No one wants to go it alone. And in an indie author’s case, you don’t need to.

Spending too much time alone with your stories can cause major tunnel vision. It’s way too easy to self-sabotage, lose sight of the big picture, or even just get so close to your work that you can’t view it objectively. 

Instead of trying to build your author career in a vacuum, build a team around yourself. Choose trustworthy experts who have deep industry knowledge. Editors who will help you make your stories the best they can be. Experienced graphic designers who know your genre. Marketers who know what sells and how to get it in front of the right people. Coaches who can guide you through each step of the process and cheer you on along the way. 

Every team looks different. You might bring an editor onboard who can coach you a bit on marketing. Or, you might bring a handful of people into your author world.

The only hard, fast rule is to get the support you need to execute successful creative control, whatever that looks like. 

The beauty of choosing your team is that you get to take your time choosing individuals who you trust. You get to pick the marketers you mesh well with, the designer whose work you love, or the editor you trust to help you develop the best stories possible. And, you have the power to let go of those professional relationships that don’t serve you or your books. The power goes both ways. 

The Last Word on the Last Word

Taking on the responsibilities of a publishing house is a weight of responsibility. But for so many self-published authors, it’s also exciting to take the reins. Just remember that getting the last word on your work means intentionally setting yourself up for success 

You’re the architect of your author life. You get to build your dream team around your books then put them out into the world. That’s what creative control is all about, and that’s pretty amazing

Need help plotting out your author life? Hit us up. We’re a team of experienced editors, coaches, designers, and marketing experts who are passionate about helping authors build their dream publishing careers. Get in touch here.  


DIY Workbook: A+ Submission Packet

Ready to start querying agents and/or publishers? We got you.

The A+ Submission Packet walks you through the following:

  • Checking the Market for the viability of your novel
  • Creating a pitch that an industry professional can’t ignore
  • Building a query letter to capture attention
  • Writing a synopsis that will best showcase your story
  • Discovering a personal bio that connects you to your work
  • How to move forward and begin the submission process

This workbook is best for writers who are nearly finished with their novel and hope to find representation and publication for that project.

After workshopping countless authors through this process over the past eight years, Jo knows the common pitfalls and strengths of most writers at this stage in their journey. She also knows that this is often the most vulnerable piece of an author’s career. With this workbook you can work at your own pace, at a time that works for you, and wherever you like. And as always, if you’d like to schedule a “Quick Chat” or a full “Mapping Call” we can go over your submission materials together.

You can find your copy of the A+ Submission Packet HERE

~ Thank you!


DIY Workbook: Write Better Stories Series

Allie and Jo are passionate about helping quality stories find their place the world. We created this series of workbooks to give intermediate authors a series of questions and checklists to strengthen the following:

  • Write a Better Story
  • Create a Better Character
  • Construct Better Tension
  • Build a Better Romance

Write a Better Story walks you through the steps to create stories with the kind of depth that sticks with the reader long after they’ve finished.

Create a Better Character also focuses on depth of story–your plot points mean nothing without the right character to inhabit them.

Construct Better Tension gives you a checklist to work through as you plan your next writing project, or look over one you’ve completed to make sure you haven’t missed possible sources of tension.

Build a Better Romance isn’t just for romance writers! Whether romance is your main plot or a subplot – building a romance that readers connect with will always bring them back for more.

You can find these DIY Workbooks on our Etsy shop HERE.

~ Happy Writing!


DIY Workbook: Master Self Editor

Want to get the most out of your edits and get your book noticed? The best way to make your book as strong as it can be is by learning how to edit your own words before your manuscript ever leaves your hands. 

No one knows your story the way you do, and no one can edit in a way that helps you stay as true to that idea as you can. This workbook will teach you how to look at your manuscript objectively, taking it through your own round of edits before querying agents or handing it over to your editor. Self-editing saves you time and money and helps you get the most out of your editing process, whatever publishing path you take.

This workbook is designed for authors who:

  • Want to get the most out of a developmental edit, or any type of edit
  • Want to feel more confident in sorting through reader and editorial feedback
  • Want to make sure they keep their novel true to their vision

MASTER SELF-EDITOR was created by Jolene Perry, a published author and professional editor. After more than a decade of working with editors from five different publishing houses, reading for agents, and running her own editing company, Jolene has assembled the tools every author needs before handing their manuscript over to a professional.

You can download your copy HERE

~ Happy Writing!


DIY Workbook: the Unforgettable Novel

An effective story pitch sells your idea to your readers if you’re an indie author, or to an agent/publisher if you’re traditionally published. It’s a way to distill the heart of your story idea into a quick, simple description that hooks your readers and leaves them wanting more. 

A pitch is crucial in selling your book. If an author takes the traditional route, a pitch sells a book to an agent who uses the pitch to sell to an acquisitions editor, the editor uses that pitch to sell to the publisher, who uses it to sell to the distributor, who uses it to sell to the bookseller, who uses it to sell to readers. In independent publishing, a pitch is the simplest and most effective tool in finding the right readers.

A solid pitch is the first step to a solid story.

In Pre-Write Your Way to an Unforgettable Story, I draw on my twelve years of publishing experience to bring you a process that helps you pick your next project, know if the idea will work, then give you focus tools to move forward with as you draft your project. I’ve even had writers say they used this method to help in revisions. 

This DIY workbook is best for authors who: 

  • Want to work at their own time, at their own pace, and within their own space
  • Have a difficult time choosing which project to write next
  • Want their book to have its best chance of selling when they’re finished
  • Don’t want to panic when people ask, “What’s your book about?”
  • Want to have a specific and focused idea to help through the writing process

We’ll work together to put your core values to use, explore tools to narrow down your project list, and find ways to make your take on the story unique to you. Because at the heart of it all, YOU are the unique element of your story. 

Saving time on your process means more time to write your next story–and the next, and the next.

Honestly, there’s nothing quite as exciting as diving into a new project, and nothing quite as daunting if you’re stuck. If you’re struggling to decide what project you should start working on next, Pitch It to Write It can help.

By working your way through the pages of the Pitch It to Write It workbook, you’ll gain a clear focus to turn your idea into the solid story it deserves to be. You can find your copy HERE.

Happy Writing! Jo


Listen to your inspiration or listen to the market? The Answer: Both

There’s an ages old debate that happens in writing advice circles between whether you should write what you want or write what readers want.

Writing to market is bad, says one group. You should follow your inpiration and write what moves your soul.

Writing to market is good, says the other. You’re going to die broke and alone if you don’t give the readers exactly what they want.

So which one is right?

Both, but you don’t have to get weird about it…

Both are 100% necessary to incorporate into your process to a degree. If you swing too far to either extreme your stories will flop.

If you publish stories that don’t take readers into consideration at all you will not sell that book. You’ll frolic through the meadows of your imagination (which is important but we’ll get to that) until you’ve written a tangled mess of words and events that are at best puzzling and at worst incomprehensible.

If you only write to the market in a genre you don’t read about tropes you disagree with centered on characters you aren’t invested in, you might be giving readers what they want but they’ll smell your game from the first word of the blurb. These books are at best obviously formulaic to at worst a slap in the readers face.

Here’s my advice, in case any of you asked for it.

Write for you, edit for your reader.

The books that you write have come from your heart in the way of tone, theme, and emotional growth. The characters you write must be interesting to you even if the world may not be. The struggles of the conflict must be something you can sit with over the course of an entire book/series. The story question should be one you want to know the answer to.

The rest should be run through the reader filter. The tropes you use, genre you write in, creatures/world building, the plot events should be geared toward the kinds of readers you are hoping to attract to your author brand.

You love stories about unsure girls transforming into strong independent women? You can write that in many genres using many tropes. A small town girl new to the big bad city for a sassy women’s fiction, a young woman leaving a bad relationship and learning to define love on her own terms with a man she never thought would be right for her in an angsty romance, a teen girl standing up to her mother to make her own decision for the first time for a YA, a young warrior training to take down a rebel army in a Sci Fi, new to magic one girl grows into her rightful place as queen in a fantasy…

You get the idea.


Waypoint Services

Sometimes you need to talk it out with someone who has gone before you.

If you want to write more, get an agent/publisher, attract ideal readers, and sell more books all while still enjoying your life, our customized coaching sessions are for you!

Publishing isn’t a linear journey where you start as a temp and end up a CEO, it’s a complicated and twisted road that throws obstacles at you from every angle: story problems, plot holes, marketing confusion, insecurity, fear, uncertainty and the list goes on.

What we can promise you here at Waypoint is that we will listen to your individual concerns as an author, dig into your stumbling blocks, unearth your true author goals, and help you overcome it all without any cookie cutter solutions or ‘just buy more ads’ marketing advice.


We believe that a solid foundation and focusing on the FOUR PILLARS of author success is all you need to start writing, publishing, and selling books that matter to readers who will love them.

We can help you overcome an obstacle, create a plan, or become your mentor—whatever you need to move forward in your writing.

Learn more about our individual services to help you navigate your story and your career HERE

Test out our style with the FREE STORY ROOTS IDEA TESTER worksheet and see if you could deepen your story idea and provide your readers with a truly moving experience.

If you’d rather work on your own, you can find our workbooks for DIY authors HERE.

See a Detailed Explanation of Services and Prices HERE


Meet the Team

Allison Martin and Jolene Perry co-founded Waypoint when they were both tired of seeing authors struggle as they tried to force their story into someone else’s process, or tried to sell themselves and their books while striving for someone else’s footsteps.

The POINT of Waypoint is to help authors find sustainable processes for being online, showcasing their stories, and at the heart of it all – writing better stories in a way that instills confidence in the process and is sustainable.

Allison Martin co-founder

Allie is an author who accidentally started a publishing design company. She’s a rebel at heart with a strong distaste for formal education—preferring the experiential and self directed approach to learning. She’s lived many lives in her three and a half decades with only one constant—a fascination with the human condition.

She dropped out of University where she studied psychology to go to beauty school, owned her own spa at 19 before selling it to travel the world, and finally settled down in a great art program…only to drop out with one class left to take.

She’s written books in Scottish pubs, and atop Canadian mountains. She’s designed covers for NYT and USA Today bestselling authors as well as Penguin Random House. She’s taught author branding and marketing at the Storymakers writer’s conference. She’s worked as a beautician, bartender, documentary filmmaker, editor, and writing coach—always fueled by her love of people as odd as she is.

Allie’s an outside the box planner and researcher often beginning each and every conversation with “I read this really great article that said…” She is driven by the need to learn new way to do things and loves to do the hard work so you don’t have to.

Allie was born and raised a small town farm girl, and now lives in the Northern Canadian Wilderness with her husband, daughter, husky pup, and mountains of outdoor gear…


Jo (Jolene Perry) is a middle and high school teacher turned author. She began her publishing career in 2010, when she signed with Cedar Fort Industries. Since that time, Jolene has written YA contemporary novels for Entangled/Macmillan, Albert Whitman Teen, and Simon Pulse. She’s also independently published a handful of novels and novellas for both young adults and adults. You can find Jolene on her website at www.jolenebperry.com

Jolene began teaching writing in 2011. She’s mentored workshops at The Storymakers Conference, taught on panels at Association for Writing and Writing Professionals (AWP), taught breakout sessions at Alaska Writer’s Guild, Alaska SCBWI, American Night Writer’s Association (ANWA), as well been a special guest at several writing retreats. She spent a year interning at the Bent Agency where she read over a hundred manuscripts.

She’s worked as a freelance editor, helping writers find agents, actors/community advocates find their writing voice, and strengthening projects for USA Today bestselling authors. She’s a former Author in Residence at Alaska Pacific University.
If you care about her formal education: Jolene graduated with a degree in Political Science and French, with an International Relations certification, specializing in Middle East Studies, as well as a secondary Ed certificate. She used this degree to teach middle school math before joining the publishing world, where she does her best to help authors find their voice, while continually re-discovering the joy of writing.
She’s an Alaskan living under the red rocks of the Colorado National Monument with her husband, two children, giant cat, two dogs, and moody mare.

To work with Allie and Jo go HERE


Haley Walden writes fast-paced, character-driven fantasy with magical adventures, spellbinding love stories, and unforgettable friendships. She’s a multi-fandom trove of geekery with a wide variety of obsessions, including Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and many more.

In her other life, she’s a marketing copywriter and editor who helps authors, entrepreneurs, and companies engage their audiences through articulate, informative, and fun-to-read copy. She has worked with New York Times bestselling authors, internationally-renowned entrepreneurs, and incredible business owners from across the U.S. and beyond.

Haley lives in Alabama with her husband and children. Find out more about her and her fantasy series, The Witness Tree Chronicles, at authorhaleywalden.com

College Intern

Emma Rose is an avid reader, feminist blogger, and student of history – phD, she’s on her way…

She’s a kickass guitar player, is learning to ride horses, and is a cow whisperer. These are just some of her many talents. Her eye for detail makes her a fantastic proofreader. You can find Emma online www.emmaroseperry.com