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These are the top asked questions I get. See if your question is answered below.

  • Can you help me get my book published?
    There are a lot of options these days regarding publishing. If you are thinking that you want to work with a traditional publisher or an indie publisher to avoid marketing your book let me tell you that unless you are Steven King or JK Rowling, you are expected to market your book. With that being said, the best thing you can do to get published is to write a great story, meaning you will need to work on your writing skills, editing skills and you will likely need to pay an editor to review your work and give you feedback on your work. A developmental editor will review your work, find plot holes, give you feedback from your genre's point of view. If you are looking for an agent to get published with a traditional publisher you'll need to query agents, which means you'll need to find the agents who are accepting works in your genre and follow the instructions to pitch to them. You can attend writing conferences to get to know agents and find out what it takes to create a good submission query. There are also a number of indie publishers that have their own submission policies. The Writer's Marketplace is a good yearly publication that has a listing of all the agents and publishers and can be a good resource when exploring publishing.
  • What's your experience with Black Rose Writing? Do you recommend them?
    My publisher has been outstanding. They have been very supportive of me and have helped me along the way. They have treated me fairly and well. I've met other authors in the program and they are very supportive of new and emerging authors. Every author's experience may vary but I've gotten to know the team and have enjoyed our collaboration.
  • Would you speak at our school?
    Reach out to my PR@shawnwarner dot com and let them know the details. I love to support readers, schools and teachers. If we can work something out I would love to be able to support your readers.
  • What have other schoolteachers said about you?
    A retired schoolteacher submitted this testimonial: To Whom It May Concern: Shawn Warner has been a friend and good neighbor for over 10 years. He is a humble and honesty man. We can always count on Shawn to lend a helping hand when needed. The best part is that he makes one-heck-of a delicious Pot Pie. At the time, I was dealing with major surgery and his kind gesture made things a bit manageable that day. Sharing that pot pie was only one of Shawn’s many acts of kindness. He has great communication skills and can talk with anyone. We often visit outside for some neighborly chats and share stories from the past. Shawn carries a lot of compassion for writing. He just recently went “TiKToK” crazy and became a Number One Best Seller on Amazon, overnight with his book, “Leigh Howard and the Ghosts of Simmons-Pierce Manor”. As good friends do, we gathered the neighbors together for a rememberable celebration of his success. Sean has been blessed with a loving wife and 2 grown children who are making their way in the world. It’s been our pleasure to know Shawn and his family. I can confidently recommend Shawn to appear at your event. Sincerely, Jayne Ragon Retired schoolteacher
  • Will you read my story?
    As a writer it's my job to read stories. I am part of several writing groups where I read my stories, I read others' stories and provide feedback and critiques. My advice to you is to find a writers group and participate. Find readers who can comment and give you feedback. Keep writing. Keep learning about the craft of reading and continue to develop your writing skills. Attend writer's conferences. This can be expensive but well worth it. You'll meet so many people and begin to develop your network. Most of all don't ever give up!
  • Can you help me promote or market my book?
    Hook your readers and hook them quick. I wrote a young adult mystery book. Great, but that doesn't say anything about my story. I started telling people my story was about a teenage girl whose parents are murdered who goes on to solve their murder with the help from a multiple personality ghost. When I first pitched my book, it was a long paragraph until my wife (a business advisor) suggested I needed to get to the part about the ghost quicker. Most people tell me "you had me at multiple personality ghost." This led to me putting this part in earlier. Create a good book hook. If you need help, my wife has a great resource for you - hook your readers. She'll even tell you why it works. She helps leaders, speakers and coaches hook their clients, audience, etc with this same approach. You'll learn and have the formula for creating your unique hook. Pitch your book hook. Get feedback. Refine it. Tweak it and then pitch it, relentlessly, repetitively until your readers can pitch it for you flawlessly. Beyond that, know your brand. That's not your photo, colors and tag lines but it is who you are and what you stand for. I write adventure stories because I want to make reading fun. I write for young adults. My brand is honest, humble (because that's who I am), kind and authentic. You won't find me intoxicated and spouting foul language because that's not who I am and it's not my brand. Your brand will inform you what you will and won't do. It'll make your life easier once you know your brand.
  • I want to pursue my dream of writing, what should I do?
    Learn and study the craft of writing. I suggest Story Engineering, On Writing by Steven King or Save The Cat. One of these three books will help you with understanding the craft of writing. Grow a thick skin. It's not personal. It's business. When you start pitching your work you are going to get A LOT of rejections. It's a business decision so don't take it personal when your story gets rejected for the 152nd time. Keep pressing forward. Join a writers group and participate. You can't write in a vacuum and expect your story to be good. You'll need to get help along the way. Don't give up.
  • How do I get started writing a book?
    Don't expect a masterpiece when you get started. I liken writing to pottery. When someone gets started making pottery, they might make an ashtray - an ugly one. That is exactly what your first stories will be like. Don't fret. That's normal. Get started writing. Read a LOT. Join writers groups. Make ugly ashtrays. The more ugly ashtrays you make, the better you'll get at making nice looking ones.
  • Writers block. Help!
    Writer's block as my wife likes to say is nothing more than stuck. Stuck isn't a bad place. Sometimes stuck happens for a reason. - you might be trying to force something that doesn't want to be forced - you've been working non-stop without a break for creativity to flourish Whatever the cause what to do with writers block is different for each author - get into your creative space (go for a walk, do a different task, put the book on the backburner - not literally) - write and discard - do something different - get to the bottom of stuck, explore it and you might find out why you were stuck in the first place and get unstuck in the process (see a coach for more help out of stuck)
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