~Author/Poet Shelby Mahogany Wilson~
1. What is the title of you first published book?
My first book was chapbook called Serenity, Traveling on the Path of God.
What was the release date? It was released in 2006.
2. What inspired you to become a Writer?
I have always been a poet. It’s been my diary to expressing my thoughts. I tell people it’s what I would have said if I could have expressed it at the time. Why? What inspired me to go public was the response I received when I shared my work. It was the audience who motivate me after reading or hearing me speak my story. They would ask where can I obtain a copy or read more of your writings. It took a long time to become confident in my talent to sell my work
3. In the Writing Industry, is there anyone that you idolize? Why?
I admire Iyanna Vanzant. She is a person who has been through a lot in her life. She uses her story and words to heal others. This is the essence of my work to allow spirit to move through my creative expression. I use my poetry to heal, reveal and uncover desires or emotions that have been blocked.
4. Since you became a writer, what have you experienced as far as the negative side of it all? Positive Side?
The negative is that not everyone will like your work. One has to take the good with the negative. The positive side is how it has affected people before I meet them. My words have reached people and been places I haven’t even seen. That is amazing to me
5. Is writing something you plan to do for a lifetime? .... Is it your passion?
Yes I will be writing till I can’t express any longer. Writing is something I incorporate into my workshops. It’s the part of me that is most authentic. If you want to know how I feel then read my words. They speak volumes before I utter a word
6. If you don’t see writing as a life -long project, what else sparks your interest?
I would love to travel the world as a motivational speaker, giving presentations on women empowerment. I’m currently working with the women’s prison in Alaska giving monthly workshops on creative writing and expression. The workshops include interactive activities and self-analyzing worksheets. This year the ladies and I will be creating a book of poems which they will all contribute to.
7. Have you traveled to different states to promote your work?
Not at this time my new book Verbal Stimulation is the biggest production I’ve created so far. I would love to travel to book expos to sign and give my book more exposure.
8. What are your marketing techniques?
I have promotion items which intrigue my audience. Anytime I can perform my work and Facebook has been a great free public advertisement. Also whenever someone needs a performer or looking to highlight an artist. I place my name in the box. Why do these things work best for you? It teases my readers to want more as well exposing me to new fans while keep the current public informed.
9. Do you have a lot of family/friend support? How does that motivate you?
Yes I do. I receive a large support from my family and friends. They are the ones buying more than on book and giving them away. My family and friends show up to events and support my creative passion. It fuels my fire to keep producing and also staying fresh with my work. I want them to be proud of my accomplishments.
10. What advice would you give to other Authors BESIDES doing research?
The best advice I can provide to any author is to speak from your heart first. Let the story tell itself. If you get caught in your head you will lose the essence of your story and miss the mark with the reader. You are here to express your gift. Let it shine.