Tell us about yourself.
I’m a 10000% neurospicy (neurodivergent) mom to two kids. I volunteer in the community helping youth however I can, and I like to think I’m a good wife (most days). I live in the middle of the US in Nebraska, and have since 2003 when the military stationed my mom here. I’m not sure what else to really say. I like to read, write, play video games. I have a few chronic illnesses that leave me bed-bound a LOT so most of my hobbies can be done while cuddled up with one of my kiddos.
When did you know you wanted to be an author?
When I was at LEAST 13, if not younger. I’ve always loved writing fiction stories, and it was something I felt like I was good at all of the time.
What genres do you like to read? Are these the same genres you write in?
I like to read almost everything, it really just depends on my mood. My favorites is romantic suspense. I absolutely love writing it – aside from the headaches of keeping everything together. Pretty sure I’ve amassed a sticky note collection now.
Is your book for adults, young adults or children?
All of my books are for adults.
What is your current release or project?
My current release is Phoenix Flames, book two in my A Conspiracy of Ravens series.
Tell us about the key characters
Raven is the FMC in this series, and I absolutely love her. She has traumatic mutism (she can’t talk or make many noises in her particular case, so she’s forced to be 100% silent). Pierce is her childhood best friend (to lovers to enemies to friends to lovers…because they’re complicated like that). Phoenix is a guy she met when they were both in the hospital for mental health help. River…oh River. He’s the guy Pierce made friends with instantly when he came to college half a year early. He’s the fun-loving, gotta make everyone laugh because life sucks kinda guy.
What is your blurb or synopsis of the book?
When the world burns…will we burn with it?
I hadn’t meant to fall into the arms of the men who hurt me, but when the world around us threatens to crumble, the only thing we can do is lean on each other.
My father wants me to help him, but only at the expense of those I care for.
My best friend wants everything with me again, but I refuse to let him in until he’s proven his worth.
My fun-loving guy is cracking in front of us, unable to maintain the happy smiles and jokes he masks his pain with.
My brooding one’s past comes to haunt us all, threatening to end everything before it’s had a chance to thrive.
Will the past come in and destroy the present?
Or have we grown enough to outlast it all?
Phoenix Flames is the second book in the series A Conspiracy of Ravens. It cannot be read as a standalone. For a full look into the content notes, please visit the author’s website.
Share an excerpt
This is the first email between Phoenix and Raven which appears at the end of Chapter 2!
SUBJECT: Mystery Mail
Hi. Salutations. Greetings?
How are we supposed to start an email to a stranger, exactly? I don’t even know who you are, yet I’m sitting in the day service room (hereby known as the common room, because it sounds fancier, and I need to feel a bit fancy for a change, okay?) writing an email to a mystery person.
Probably shouldn’t reveal too much, but I’m using the email they gave to me when I got here, as I didn’t want to make one up myself.
Great idea that was, because now you know my last name, but alas, I digress. Do people even talk like that? Whatever.
You said on your sticky note that you wanted me to have a place to talk freely, since it’s clearly hard for me to get anything across in group.
You’d be fucking right about that, Flames. You’d be absolutely fucking right.
I’m tired. I can’t speak, and I did a LOT of speaking before I suddenly couldn’t anymore. Fate and Karma are working hard against me for some reason.
Tell me a bit about you in your reply, and I’ll tell you all about me and how this shit happened.
PS: What’s with the pineapple sticker on your note? It might behoove you to know that I absolutely loathe pineapple pizza. (I’ll be surprised if I get an email back after this.)
Do you have a favorite scene?
I do. However, if I said what it was, I’d be spoiling something. What I can say is that it’s the BEST form of groveling for Pierce to do and I laugh every single time I think about it!
What advice would you give a beginner?
Gosh. Have your ducks in a row? Research, research, research. Not all advice will fit YOU and YOUR brand. Remember that you are a BUSINESS, so you need to be as professional as you can, even if it is talking about dirty things in the romance community. Also, put a schedule together that you can keep up with. Every single author has a different situation, and allowing yourself to be sucked in to someone else’s schedule is not always ideal. Give yourself breathing room, and know that the author community is 100000% the best place for help, because we’ve all been there and we all still need help from time to time.
I hope that wasn’t too long. I’m sure I have more, too. This is just what I can come up with right now!
Social media links:
Shelby Lee is a dark romance author specializing in the act of trauma dumping into her own stories in the hopes of eventually healing herself, and possibly others, along the way. She resides in a semi-small town in Nebraska with her husband, two kids, and guinea pigs.
When she’s not writing, she’s mentoring youth in the community on the off chance she just might leave the world a better place than she found it.
Other than that, you can probably find her on TikTok.