Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets; How to Write Books People Actually Read

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Millions of trees have been turned into pulp and then into paper, a great deal of ink has been spilled, and countless printed words have been turned into electrons—all with the express purpose of educating and entertaining our fellow humans. Writing is in our DNA.

While there is no reliable data that tells us when Homo sapiens first started speaking, we do know when they started “telling stories”—it was at least forty millennia ago. We know this because there are cave paintings that date back that far.

And doesn’t that make sense? When “Ugh”—or whatever his name was—left the cave in search of food and brought the dead saber-toothed tiger back to the cave, we think it unlikely that he just threw it down in the dirt and gestured, as if to say, “Enjoy your meal.”

Many of Ugh’s comrades likely didn’t make it home from that battle, so Ugh probably felt the need to tell his audience about the titanic fight in which he bested the beast. And since life in those days was brutal and short, he then drew pictures of the encounter on the cave walls for posterity to see. While there is much speculation as to what constitutes “the oldest profession,” we believe evidence suggests that, other than hunting for food to survive, storytelling was the first vocation.

We have spent decades not only telling stories, but leading writing seminars for diverse groups. We have benefited from a great deal of help along the way and want to pay it forward to beginning, emerging and accomplished writers. To that end, we pulled together our best-practices into this book, Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets, to serve as a companion to those who want to take their writing to the next level. You are a writer, not that “special and gifted” someone else.

Advance Praise for Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets

“Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets is the most complete guide to writing, publishing, and selling a book I have ever read (and I’ve consulted many). Both never-before and widely-published writers can glean actionable, useful, and original tips from this practical roadmap, written with humor and empathy for today’s authors.”
— Taylor Baldwin Kiland, military non-fiction author and ghostwriter of more than fifteen published works

“An outstanding introduction to the aspiring novelist, this book is also a welcome review for any experienced author. The lessons on how writers can use social media to publicize their work are quite insightful. Secrets is also great for writers who want to shift from nonfiction to fiction, identifying the elements necessary to create novels people actually read.”
— Dr. Sam J. Tangredi, award-winning nonfiction author

“George Galdorisi and Kevin McDonald have done the impossible—create a book about writing that’s actually helpful. Their practical approach pairs perfectly with informative tips for aspiring writers at any experience level. From asking scribes to plumb their motivations to explaining the realities of 21st century marketing, the Braveship Writers have crafted a guide into a timeless topic that is fresh, modern, and insightful.”
— Joe Pappalardo, author of Inferno, Red Sky Morning and (in 2024) Four Against the West

“George Galdorisi, Kevin McDonald, and the Braveship Team have written the most comprehensive treatise on the craft and business of writing since Stephen King’s On Writing. Braveship Writers Share is a must read for any author regardless of where they are on their journey. Easy to digest and handy as a reference, this one belongs on the desk—creased, earmarked, and highlighted.”
— Brigadier General Anthony J. Tata (U.S. Army, Retired), national bestselling author of 16 novels, including his current General Garrett Sinclair series: Chasing the Lion, Total Empire, and 2024’s The Phalanx Code.

“It is always a challenge to write a book. I have written over thirty books myself and find each and every one has its own story and adventure. I like to write. That is why I highly recommend Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets to help aspiring authors unleash their creativity. These authors are especially helpful in providing insights in an area in which I have not done a book, namely writing a novel. Well, after reading this book, I just might try!”
— Dr. Robbin F. Laird, author, most recently, of Australia and Indo-Pacific Defence: Anchoring a Way Ahead and The Coming of the CH-53K: A New Capability for the Distributed Force

“A comprehensive guide to mastering the art of thriller fiction, delivered with vim and gusto by two of the genre’s finest storytellers!”
—Dr. Matt Cook, Los Angeles Times bestselling author of Sabotage and Good Little Marauder

“Finally, a book about the secrets of writing for aspiring and experienced authors that can help us expand our thinking, perceptions, and actions to capture hearts and minds and ensure bestselling success.”
— W. Craig Reed, New York Times bestselling author of Start With Who and Spies of the Deep

“Although much of this invaluable book is focused on writing thrillers, I found lots of useful advice and welcome inspiration in it for all kinds of writing—articles, essays, memoirs, fiction of all stripes. I’ve been toiling in these fields for decades, and I’ve even written a few books on writing myself; but to find a book that’s as straightforward, informative, and just plain conversational as this one is rare. It’s like having a private consultation, over a beer and pretzels, with a group of insiders willing to spill the secrets and answer all the pressing questions about everything from conception to publication, and beyond.”
— Robert Masello, bestselling author of The Einstein Prophecy, Robert’s Rules of Writing, The Haunting of H.G. Wells,
and many other books

“Few established writers are willing to share the secrets of their craft; and, until now, no group of award-winning writers has done so. Braveship Writers Share Their Secrets breaks new ground and provides an entertaining and extraordinarily useful guide for beginning, emerging, and established writers. Read this book, and then pick up your pen!”
— Admiral James Stavridis, Supreme Allied Commander of NATO and author of a dozen bestsellers, including 2034: A Novel of the Next World War and To Risk It All: Nine Crises and the Crucible of Decision.
“We, as a society, are in desperate need of a new generation of writer that is both courageous and passionate about telling—and defending—THE TRUTH. Not ‘a truth’ as a publisher wants it written, or ‘a truth’ from a political viewpoint; but instead, the reality of what happened, where it happened, and why it all took place. This book inspires that writer in all of us to get back to the starting point. If you are considering picking up a weapon far more powerful than the sword (i.e., the pen), I highly recommend this book.”
— Scott McEwen, #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of American Sniper, the Sniper Elite series of novels, and many other fiction and non-fiction books.

“Does the world need another book on writing thrillers? There’s always room for more insights, more advice, and more encouragement in a tough business. I know I enjoyed this volume.”
— David Poyer, author of Arctic Sea and Writing in the Age of AI