What's Your Book? A Book For All Of Us.

If you want to know what kind of book "What's Your Book: A Step-By-Step Guide to Get You From Inspiration... is, look no further than the poem that Brooke Warner, seasoned editor, talented writer, and writing coach extraordinaire, chose to begin it with:

Thinking Like A Butterfly, by Mark Nepo

Monday I was told I was good.

I felt relieved.

Tuesday I was ignored.

I felt invisible. 

Wednesday I was snapped at. 

I began to doubt myself.

On Thursday I was rejected.

Now I was afraid.

On Saturday I was thanked

for being me. My soul relaxed.

On Sunday I was left alone

till the part of me that can't

be influenced grew tired of 

submitting and resisting.

Monday I was told I was good.

Tuesday I got off the wheel.

That's right. Brooke Warner, writing coach, editor, and committed advocate for all women who write, started her how-to guide not with a pithy list of tips, but with a poem--a poem that reflects just how deeply she understands writers and the mental and emotional challenges they face. Brooke Warner wants you to get off the wheel and get writing. But this author truly understands what it takes to do that, and that it isn't easy. Doable, yes--one of the other wonderful things about Brooke's book is its can-do optimism, complete with plenty of exercises and concrete, actionable advice--but not easy. And I for one find it easier to trust writing coaches who acknowledge this truth right off the bat.

What's Your Book? is a how-to, indeed, but it's the kind of how-to that can be life-changing for a writer at any stage of her process, rather than simply dictating a host of anxiety-producing to-do lists. In this book, Brooke doesn't just tell writers "how to build a platform" (though her step-by-step guide to doing just that, written by a woman who sat on the acquisitions side of the business assessing author platforms for more than a decade, is invaluable), but "how to value your writing" and "how to banish dream-crushers and saboteurs." For the past few months, I have had the honor of working with Brooke as my editor and coach on my own novel-in-progress, and the strength of her caring and commitment to writers, to helping them "reset" their emotional and mental frameworks in order to clear the way to write the very best book they can, has blown me away.  

What's Your Book? is the first title ever to be published by She Writes Press, and for that alone it will always have a special place in my heart. But as a forty-year-old first-time novelist, I am grateful to Brooke for putting what she knows into words for another, more selfish reason. I needed to hear it, and I feel better getting off the wheel with this book in my hands.

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Tags: book, how-to, inspiration, review

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Comment by Brooke Warner on November 21, 2012 at 11:59am

To all of you who like Mark's poem, do check Mark out. He's an amazing poet, and his Facebook page gives little bits from his Book of Awakening every day: www.facebook.com/marknepo.

Comment by Brooke Warner on November 21, 2012 at 11:58am

Thanks so much for the write-up, Kamy!

Comment by Linda Joy Myers on November 20, 2012 at 3:38pm

I agree--it's a wonderful book with chapters that deal with all the challenges that writers face, including those inner demons. I'm recommending it to everyone who is writing a book and wants to get to "The End" and beyond--to hold their book in their hands.

Comment by Annie Tucker on November 20, 2012 at 3:33pm

I've already read this book cover to cover, and I can't overemphasize how useful I found it, not only as a tool to get me thinking about how to advance my own writing career, but also as a great overview of the new directions that the publishing industry is headed in. Brooke's narrative voice is so natural and conversational that reading What's Your Book? feels more like having a long chat with a very knowledgeable friend than reading a traditional prescriptive book. Highly recommended! 

Comment by Grace Peterson on November 20, 2012 at 3:18pm

Wow, Kamy, I knew I wanted to buy Brooke's book but you really sealed the deal. Great review! Congrats, Brooke. 

Comment by B. Lynn Goodwin on November 20, 2012 at 3:12pm

Looks like an important book for writers. Thanks!

Comment by RYCJ on November 20, 2012 at 8:46am

I did. I did. I loved that poem... certainly a nice working premise that will inspire writers to want to know what's inside.

Comment by Daphne Q on November 19, 2012 at 8:08pm

Congrats on the book!

Comment by Patricia A. McGoldrick on November 19, 2012 at 10:35am

Congrats! This book will be appealing to many. This poet writer is working on a novel for the first time. Can truly appreciate the accomplishment you have made!:)

Comment by Julie Luek on November 19, 2012 at 10:18am

Wow-- this sounds like one of those books that makes a writer's soul say, "ahhhh".  Just reading the poem eased that constant tension.  Thanks for highlighting it.

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