Shanet Outing is a wife, mother, student, teacher, and blogger of Napturally Happy. She started writing lyrics at the age of eight which transition into poetry. In 2005 Shanet won the National fine arts exhibit sponsored by the Boys & Girls Clubs of America for her art work “Vogue of Colors.” She placed first in her age category at the 2005 Burlington County 4 -H Youth Development farm exhibit for her color photo entitled “Snowflakes.” She was published in the Creative Communication’s poetry book Spring 2009. As well contributed to Farmingdale Senior High School Labyrinth Volume One Spring 2009 and Volume Two Spring 2010 with a total of three poems published. A Brooklyn, NY native now residing in the Central Texas area with her little family.
About her most recent book
‘Mind, Body, and Soul of a Teenage Intellect’ is a poetic collection of Shanet’s adolescent years entering into young womanhood. Join the roller coaster ride and experience the growth of a teenage mind trying to balance the everyday adversities of life. Read as Shanet brings evocative poetry to life on relationships, love, hate, death, pain, success and so much more. Then maybe you can understand what goes on inside of the Mind Body, and Soul of a Teenage Intellect.
When did you first decide you wanted to become an author?
I wanted to be an author during high school. Writing was an outlook for me. The more I wrote my poems and entered contest. It made me want to one day publish my story in poetry one day. I felt someone is most likely experiencing this same hurt I was. Even now as an adult some people can pick it up and still relate to it.
How did you decide on the idea for your 1st book? 2nd book? 3rd book, etc?
I decided on the first idea of my book my Senior year in 2010. It was during my creative writing class. I made like a mini poetry book of the current title. I was telling my teacher at the time Ms.Paladino that this will be my name of my first book. At that time I wanted to include my journals as well. I decided over time that it is best to just stick to the poetry. That is because my journals are just too much and no one does not need to know my personal life like that.
How long did it take you to complete your first book? What was the process like?
My book is a collection of poetry from the age of 12 up to about 20. It is a milestone from me being a young teenager entering adulthood. When I finally decided in 2013 to put all my poems together it was exciting. It was exciting when I finished everything. I was ready to send out to publishers. I am thinking to myself "It cannot be that hard." "They will love me." A couple of no's left me a bit defeated because it was not what they were looking for. I decided if no one wants my work I will self-publish. I believe in my writing and others do too. I rather just hustle that way to get my name out there.
What’s so rewarding about writing books and being an author?
What is rewarding is finally accomplishing a goal of mine for years. That I will write three books in three years. It looks like it will be sooner than that. I really hope to actually become a N.Y. Times Best Selling Author in my genre one day.
Was there ever a time you felt like giving up?
I felt like giving up when I took down time in even finding publishers to publish my book. I finally came across Marvelous Leaders Publications through my creative writing group in November of 2016. They contacted me back the next day saying they were interesting. That was one of the most exciting things to hear all year. I really had a tough year in 2016.
There’s more to being an author than writing a book. How do you manage to handle the business side of things?
I am very new to this. I always had a love for business. It was something I was great at and making business plans. I am right now in the mind frame of creating my brand. I want to get my poetry out there through visualizations and voice over. So people can have a face to the voice. I want people to actually be connected with my work.
Do you have an editor or do you edit your own books?
The editors that are under Marvelous Leaders Publications are Tanya Cole and Vernita Crawford.
Who does the cover art for your book(s)?
Do you ever encounter writer’s block? How do you get past it?
I have many times. I just take a break from it. I do not even stress it. I know eventually when I am moving around or doing something an idea will pop in my head. I feel like my mind is always thinking and it is hard to keep it quiet and shut out all the thoughts so I can tap into my writing zone.
How often do you write?
I used to write everyday in my journal. That over the years once I started having kids dwindle down to me journaling every once in a blue moon. I have over 20 journals from my teenage years up until now. When it comes to poetry it is whenever I can get a chance as well. The words usually just come to me and I have to write them down.
Tell us about your last book signing.
I have not had a book signing yet. That will be a goal of mine for this year.
Beside social media, what other methods are you using to get the word out about your book(s)?
I have not used any other methods so far. I am spreading it word of mouth through close friends, family, and co-workers. I have also used blogs as a way too.
As a Woman of Color, what inspires you the most?
As a Woman of Color what inspires me the most is community building. I want to build with my sisters. Some of us are no focus on the end goal. We are not focus on that we are a force in numbers. I want to inspire others to take the steps they need to in and life and always build for the future. We have so much to gain in this crazy world. We have to make the best of our situations.
Who is your biggest influence?
My biggest influence is my grandmother. She is the definition of someone who always have your back no matter what. She has not ever let me down. There is not a time I can recall that she did. I want to her to see my success. My success is her success because she majorly raised me into the woman I am today. She is my phenomenal woman in the words of Maya Angelou
Have you ever done something in the past you regret? How did you get through it?
I would right it out. I would write what happened and why it happened. That usually would make me feel better. When I read over what has transpire I often laugh about it. Your mind set from a year ago even a month ago is totally different than the present time. That means we are always growing never stagnant. The growth could be minor. Every little step forward to the ultimate goal is what is important.
How do you get through the tough times in life when life throws what it throws at you?
I get through tough times through writing. Writing was my way to escape the tough times growing up. Especially when I was younger. My pages in my notebook I written in tears. A lot of those journals and poems I have dried tear drops on them. If I did not write it down I would had lost all control of myself. Writing was my way to control my emotions before I hurt myself or someone else. I am so glad I decided to take that route besides getting into habits that are unhealthy to my mind, body, and spirit.
What is one goal you want to accomplish for yourself in 2013?
My goal for the year of 2017 is to complete my M.S. in Mental Health Counseling. To keep on hustling and grinding. Also a major key for me in this new year is remaining focus. I am not only doing this for myself I am doing this for my family.
What do you have planned next?
My next plan is to come out with my t-shirt brand called RWC as well as preparing to publish my erotica poetry cook.
How can readers and others in the literary community reach you?
You guys can reach me at:
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