About Brandi Lai

Brandi Lai is the Founder and President of Best Laid Pens. During her time in college, she
slowly gained the confidence that she needed to wear her identity as a transgender woman
proudly 🏳️‍🌈. That marked the beginning of something new and a writing journey she never would have expected.

The Beginning

In 2016, she was trying to figure out how to create a larger impact at her college and to give back to her communities. That was when she heard about one of her college’s online magazines, Her Campus. She was anxious at the start, thinking about who was going to read the articles and was she okay with people knowing about her experiences? However, with the support of her friends and mentors, she took the plunge and started by writing several articles for Her Campus about her experiences as a transwoman. Once those articles were published, she began to recognize the impact that she could have by sharing her story and others through this medium. That marked the beginning of something new.

2016

The Growth

By sharing her work and continuing her transition with those around her, she gained the confidence she needed to continually put herself and her work in the spotlight. The confidence she gained helped her put herself in leadership roles in her college and helped to drive systemic change for LGBTQ+ people and create a more inclusive environment.

She developed and hosted several workshops around transgender and LGBTQ+ education as well as passing down what she learned for upcoming young activists. She presented these workshops and lessons to her college and surrounding organizations such as Planned Parenthood, Metro Wellness Community Center, Community Tampa Bay, and Florida Collegiate Pride Collation (FCPC). In her final semester, she was able to present her research at the Southeast Women Studies Association and University of South Florida’s Undergraduate Research Conference in 2018, marking a feather in her cap at the end of her degree.

2016-2018

The Niche

Once she graduated, she left with a passion for writing and a drive to continue to give back to her communities. She soon found employment with a Hybrid Publishing company, Publish Your Purpose, who shared her passion and commitments. She was given the opportunity to write several of the blog posts about the writing and publishing process and was given the opportunity to uplift the stories of her community, the opportunity to work on a short story anthology.

She met with over a dozen different transgender and nonbinary people who shared their stories with her. She worked to put those stories, and her own, together in her book, The Real Lives of Transgender and Nonbinary Humans. Each of the contributors shared their raw experiences with her and being able to help each of them shape their story to what it is in the book was a humbling experience and one that she knew she wanted to continue.

2018-2020

Best Laid Pens

It was from hearing and helping put together these contributors’ stories that she had the opportunity to work with one of the contributors specifically on her own book. This new opportunity and contributor helped empower Brandi to found Best Laid Pens. To use her talents to help diverse people share their stories. After years of searching, she has found her purpose.

Since then, Brandi has had the pleasure to work with a wide range of authors and has helped them speak their truth. To share their stories and lessons they’ve learned. Every person has a story inside them, whether we know it or not, and everyone deserves the chance to share their story. Each person that she has helped has only reaffirmed her commitment to giving back to her communities in this way. Whether that is through using her expertise to put someone’s thoughts into words, expanding and fleshing out the content that someone has, or editing what has already been written, she is dedicated to making sure that your voice is heard, and your story is told in an authentic and real way.

2020-Present

Don’t keep sitting on your ideas. Publish that book!

Get the help and support you need to make your book a reality!