Winner: Best New Fiction, American Fiction Award
Finalist: Publishers Weekly BookLife Prize
Finalist: First Novel, Indie Book Awards
"Deeply engrossing . . . a highly satisfying reading experience. . . Shore's prose is nearly transparent--which is extremely high praise. The writing is so stylistically on target that the language itself falls away, allowing the reader to enter into the subtleties of the story completely. . . . Shore's protagonist is authentically funny and rawly sympathetic. . . . This novel stands apart for its originality. It is a testament to the notion that the strongest works are often those with simple storylines, exceptionally told." -- Publisher's Weekly BookLife Prize
I'm an author and editor. I was born in Nashville, lived for decades in California, and now reside in the southern Appalachian city of Asheville, NC.
I've written an award-winning novel (Everywhere She’s Not, 2019), a (then) ground-breaking book refuting the notion that being gay is a sin (UNFAIR, 2013), and a book about punctuation (Comma Sense, 2007), which I co-wrote with renowned grammarian Richard Lederer.
From 2007 until I shut it down in 2014 to write my novel, I wrote a personal blog that was simultaneously published on my website and on The Huffington Post. That blog received more than 400,000 unique views a month—which made me, for some five years running, one of the most-read writers in America. Which sounds like an insane thing to say, I know. But . . . there it is.
From April 2016 until I concluded the story in November 2017, I wrote, for the Asheville Citizen Times (part of the USA Today network), Ashes to Asheville, the first real-time serial novel ever to be published on the website of a major daily newspaper. From Oct. 2016 through 2019 I also wrote for the Citizen Times a popular advice column, Ask John.
For years before any of that work I was a freelance magazine and newspaper writer and editor. I wrote and edited for the San Diego Union-Tribune, KPBS San Diego, The Reader, and San Diego magazine, among others.
Communicating the truth, as best as I understand it, has always been the primary drive behind my writing. As much as I have wanted to tell my own stories, I've wanted even more to help others tell theirs. That's been the driving impetus behind most every aspect of my writing career.
In August of 1981 I married the love of my life, Catherine ("Cat"), a genius of a human being who has yet to awaken in the morning, look over at me, and say, "That's it. I'm out." I don't know why that hasn't happened yet. I don't ask. Cat is the Finance Director for a nonprofit that serves victims of domestic violence.
“The touching, brave, and frequently heartbreaking letters in UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question should be required reading for any Christian who claims that gay people can’t also be Christians—and for LGBT people who feel there’s some conflict between their sexual orientations or gender identities and their faith. John Shore is sharp, he’s funny, and he’s right. I challenge anyone who believes that the Bible justifies the persecution of their gay and lesbian neighbors—particularly those on the religious right who’ve made lucrative careers for themselves out of bearing false witness against their gay and lesbian neighbors—to read this book.” — Dan Savage, founder, It Gets Better; host, Savange Lovecast
"John Shore is awesome, and a brilliant writer. The minute I started reading his stuff, I knew he was a brother from another mother." —Rob Bell, Love Wins.
"John Shore is a gadfly, calling the Christian Church everywhere to act the way it says it believes about love and justice, which of course makes him an uncomfortable presence in those churches that do not like to be forced to face reality. So were the prophets of old. So was Jesus of Nazareth." -- John Shelby Spong
"Amen! A book that gives voice to the thousands of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning people who have been told they must sacrifice their identity to be Christian." — Believe Out Loud
“Comma Sense is a clear, entertaining, and just plain helpful guide to the American rules of punctuation.” ―Lynne Truss, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Eats, Shoots & Leaves
“Of my 465 books on punctuation---I've read them all---Comma Sense is the wisest and funniest. It's the only one you really need.” ―Bryan A. Garner, author of Garner's Modern American Usage
“A thorough field guide to the pesky little critters of the punctuation forest.Lederer and Shore hit the marks!” ―Bill Walsh, author of The Elephants of Style
“Who else would call the exclamation point 'this titan of tingle, this prince of palpitation'? Who else would call the apostrophe the Jesse James of punctuation? Who else would compare the dash to Fred Astaire, the semicolon to Duke Ellington, and parentheses (yes, my darlings) to Louella Parsons? It can only be Richard Lederer, Viceroy of Verbivores, and his trusty sidekick, John Shore.” ―Patricia T. O'Conner, author of Woe Is I
“Punctuation needn't be perplexing or painful, as Richard Lederer and John Shore make abundantly clear. Comma Sense is full of easy-to-understand guidance for the grammatically challenged—and loads of laughs besides!” ―Martha Barnette, co-host of nationally syndicated radio show, A Way with Words.
"Writing well is important for business, but it also can be crucial in love, the writers warn. Do you want to say, "I would like to tell you that I love you. I can't stop thinking that you are one of the prettiest women on Earth," or "I would like to tell you that I love you. I can't. Stop thinking that you are one of the prettiest women on Earth." As Lederer and Shore say, "Punctuation can mean the difference between a second date and a restraining order.”―Margo Hammond, St. Petersburg Times