Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2011

2012 - The Year I Write 4 Novels

Now that 2011 has come and gone, I can look back and smile at what I have accomplished. Go ahead, smile with me.

During the course of the year, I went from planning on finishing the first book for Miscorrection to doing so much more. I also wrote five short stories and a novel under a pen name. In total, I wrote about 185,000 words this year and learned more than I ever thought I would.

I've also met some great online writer friends like Jeff Ambrose and Steve Umstead. Jeff's been integral in helping me learn more about writing, offering tips and tricks and books to read to help my craft. Steve, through writing his Gabriel Trilogy, has shown me that you can write three novels in a year. Plus, I've watched his marketing and see that it has paid off for him.

As I look to 2012, I need to top what I did this year. So here is my goal. I plan to write and self-publish four novels in 2012. Two of the novels will finish up the Miscorrection trilogy. The other two novels will be in th…

Got a new Kindle? Get a free book, too!

I'm guessing there are one or two people out there who recently were given a Kindle. Maybe even three. There's really no way for me to know an exact number.

Regardless, there are new Kindle owners out there. Basically, they've got their cake. But what's cake without some icing?

That's why I've decided to make Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability available for free from December 25, 2011 to December 27, 2011. Consider it the icing on the cake!

Click here to get Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability free for your Amazon Kindle!


Kindle Owner's Lending Library

***UPDATE: Due to the terms of exclusivity for KDP Select, I had to remove Miscorrection: Preludes and Don't Blink from the service. However, you can still purchase those books from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and other eBook retailers.***
Hey all! I got some great news. A few months back I made  a post called "eBook Subscription Service". Basically it talked about a potential "Netflix" style service that Amazon might be offering for the Kindle.

Well that service was announced and is called the Kindle Owner's Lending Library. It allows all Amazon Prime members to "check out" one book a month for free. The downside of the service was that it did not allow self-published authors like myself to be a part of the program.

Well that has all changed. Effective today, Amazon has started offering self-published authors the option to put books into the Kindle Owner's Lending Library. Of course, since I was giddy to do this in the first place, I…

The Future of Miscorrection

I'm back. After a brief hiatus from the Miscorrection series for the past four months, I'm feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. I'm ready to get back into writing the series.
Last week, I started writing the story after outlining it roughly the week before. The Book 2 story has been in my head for years, so getting it outlined was not an issue. But  I did have an issue with my approach.
As you may know, I wrote Book 1 of Miscorrection as a series of six novelettes/novellas. I did this for a number of reasons, but the main one was my inexperience in writing. Writing Book 1 as a novel felt overwhelming, so I broke it down into six smaller stories that I could manage.
Great idea at the time, but as I thought about writing Book 2, I felt that approach might be wrong. After debating it in my head for a few weeks, I decided to write Book 2 as a novel. It will work out better and allow me to develop the plot in fuller detail.
This has left me with a minor problem. If Book 1 is six shor…

November 2011 Sales Numbers

Well, another month has passed. That means it is time for me to report my eBook sales. Let's just say that compared to the past three months, these sales are not as good. I'm not worried though. I'll just keep writing and putting out more books. It will get better with time.
I released two books during November. The first is Don't Blink. This is a collection of 40 flash fiction stories I wrote. Unfortunately, I didn't see any sales of the book.
On a high note, Fram Gage and The Infinite Abilityreleased before December. While it was technically available starting November 23, 2011, I didn't promote it until November 25, 2011. From that point until now the book has sold faster than anything previously published by me (me being B.C. Young and Desmond Shepherd). So I'm happy about that. Don't forget, between now and December 7, 2011 you can pick up the book for only $0.99. That's 75% off the regular price of $3.99!
Without further delay, here are my Novemb…

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Book Deal!!!

Great news!!! Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability is now for sale on the Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, and through Smashwords! That's nearly a week before I anticipated releasing it. I'm waiting on B&N for it to be available there. When it is, I'll be sure to let you know!
The news gets better! You can get the novel right now for only $0.99. While I'm labeling this as a Black Friday/Cyber Monday deal, it actually starts today and ends December 7, 2011. After that, the cost goes back up to its regular price of $3.99. This is my way of saying thank you to everyone who has followed my posts the past few months leading up to the book's release. I hope you take advantage of this offer, and if you do, I hope you enjoy reading Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability.
You can get Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability during this Black Friday/Cyber Monday deal for $0.99 for your Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, or through Smashwords from the following locations:


Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability

Fram Gage lives in Biality Orphanage. It's an okay place, except for The Ability Chamber, which is a fantastic arena within the orphanage where the children compete and race using superhuman abilities such as Super Strength and Wall Climbing. Fram especially likes it, until he and his friends are in a competition where the rules have changed. Their lives are in danger, and they don't know what to do. But a special ability--one they never imagined--gives them hope to make it through the competition safely.

Available at the following locations:

Print edition available at Amazon and CreateSpace.
Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability
Copyright © 2011 by Desmond Shepherd
Chapter 1
“Come on, Fram. Quit being such a wimp. We can’t get hurt,” Bagger Carson yelled. He gripped a brick window sill with his left arm, which kept him from falling four stories to the sidewalk below. A breeze caused his loose fitting green t-shirt to ripple, and the cuffs of his baggy tan shorts slapped his knees. The…

Fram Gage & The Final Synopsis

My last post asked that you help me pick out a synopsis for Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability. Of the three choices I gave you, numbers two and three received the most votes, but they were tied.
I obviously couldn't use both synopses. So I decided to look at the strong points from both of those and comments left by you. I  received some great suggestions to improve the synopsis for the book. Combing all that help, I wrote a fourth and final synopsis. This on, in my opinion, is the best of all of them. It is focused, to the point, but doesn't reveal too much about the story.
It's perfect!
I owe it all to you who participated. If not for your votes and suggestions, I could not of have written this killer synopsis. Thank you so much!
Now, here is the final synopsis for Fram Gage and The Infinite Ability. This will be used in the book listings on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and more.
What do you think? Feel free to tell me in the comments below.
Also, look for a post in the…

Kindle Fire Let's You Sit In Your Recliner

[caption id="attachment_2131" align="alignleft" width="180" caption="Laptop and recliner? Soon a thing of the past...."][/caption]
Well, if all goes well today, the Kindle Fire I bought for my wife should arrive from UPS. She really wanted a tablet. What was the main reason? She wanted to easily sit in her recliner and browse the Internet. She won't have to worry about "lugging" her laptop over to do that anymore. It seemed like a small problem to me, but who am I to argue? Besides if it makes her life happier, I'm all for it.
As a way to celebrate the release of the Kindle Fireand my wife being able to easily browse the internet in her recliner, I thought I would run a small promotion on Miscorrection: Book 1 (Sunrise to Sundown). From now until November 30, 2011 the eBook will be only $2.99. That's a 40% savings off the regular price. You can't beat that.
For everyone getting a Kindle Fire today or in the near future, I …

Help Me Choose A Synopsis

Two weeks ago, I revealed the cover for Fram Gage & The Inifinte Ability. I got some good positive feedback on the cover, and I appreciate the encouragement you have all given.
It's getting down to crunch time with the book. I finished the first draft this past week, and I am now in the proofreading and editing stages. If all goes well, the book should release in the beginning of December.
Here's where it gets fun! If there is one thing I hate, it is writing the synopsis for the book listing. They are difficult to write because I want to capture your interest, but at the same time, I don’t want to reveal too much of the story.
So if I hate it, why am I saying this is where it gets fun?
Well, I thought I would get you involved with this process. No, I’m not going to have you write the blurb. But I am giving you the option to help me pick it out.
Below are three listings I’ve considered using for the book. Since I know what the book is about and I am obviously biased toward it, I…

October 2011 Sales Numbers

October was a steady month for books sales at Forever Young Publishing. Below are the numbers, and I couldn't be happier. While I would have liked to see an increase in sales as I have the previous months, remaining steady was good.
There is a positive sign to this months numbers. Last month, Copy Bird made up most of my 37 sales. This month, while it did have the largest amount of sales at 13, the numbers are a lot more diverse. I think I know why, too.
In September I releasedMiscorrection: Book 1 (Sunrise to Sundown). It's the complete collection of all the stories that make up Book 1 in the series. If you were to download the sample of the eBook for your Amazon Kindle or Barnes & Noble Nook, you could actually read the first story in the series, Sunrise, free. Since that was the case, I thought it would only be fair that I offer the standalone ofSunrise for free, too! This has resulted in sales of the other stories, which is great to see. I'm hoping it continues to mo…

4 Step eBook Cover Design

A past post revealed the title of the novel I plan to release in December 2011. In case you missed it, the title is Fram Gage & The Infinite Ability. Now that I've let that out of the bag, it's time to show you the cover for the eBook. (Note: This cover will also be used for the print edition.)
The philosophy Forever Young Publishing has is always "Less is more". The challenge with writing, cover design, or anything in general is conveying the most amount of information with as little as possible. For cover design, FYP breaks this down into four simple steps:
Step 1: Background
The background is important because it will help set the tone for the book. In some cases, a color might be used for the background, in other cases it might be an image. For Fram Gage & The Infinite Ability I chose an abstract background that I thought fit the story well. This image was created by Diego Barucco and you can find more of his work by going to his Artist's …

My Problem With Superman

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Photo From"][/caption]
Superheroes have been quite the rage over the past 10 years. This mostly is because of movies. The entertainment industry has been able to adapt these comics  that go back 40, 50, 60, or more years, and turn them into fun entertainment. I enjoy them, and I'm sure you do, too.
I like pretty much every superhero, including Spider-Man and Batman. I even like Superman, despite some issues I have with him as a superhero.
You see, there's a problem with Superman. He is ... well ... Super. Nothing defines the superhero category better than a Super Man. In fact, he's so super that he's indestructible. Guess what? He can see through things, too.
But wait, there's more!
Superman can fly! He can run super fast! He can shoot hot laser beams through his eyes and blow bone-chilling, freezing air from his mouth! He's strong , too! He can lift w…

Book Review: Gabriel's Return by Steve Umstead

If you recall, I reviewed the book Gabriel's Redemption by Steve Umstead back in the Spring. The author contacted me and asked if I would like to review the next book in the series, Gabriel's Return, and I have to say that I'm very glad that I did!
As with all of my reviews, I'm not going to talk about the plot here. That's for you to enjoy when you curl up with your Kindle (or other eReader) and a cup of tea or coffee. But I will bring out a number of things about the book I enjoyed.
Gabriel's Return starts off fast, forcing you to dive into the story. I really appreciated this. As you might recall, my major complaint with Gabriel's Redemption was that it took a long time, nearly half the book, before I felt like the pace of the story was moving at full steam. Gabriel's Returnis nothing like that.
Hats off to the author, too, for making the planet of Eden so believable. As the characters traverse the planet, it feels alive and real. It's definitely th…

You Can Because You're Able

[caption id="attachment_2015" align="aligncenter" width="294" caption="Photo © Ahmet Ihsan Ariturk"][/caption]
In life, we all strive for something. When we're young, we can't wait to graduate from high school. Next, we look forward to a career. After that, we want to get married, have children, and the list goes on.
Sometimes, our goal is big. It's grand. Other times, it's small. It's nothing. It could be writing a novel, or it could be mowing your lawn.
One thing is certain, no matter how big or small the goal is, you will meet with opposition. It could be an excuse you make up to not do something, it could be others holding you back. Whatever it is, if you don't fight the resistance, you lose. It will come up and bite you in the hind like a lion chasing down a zebra. You'll never finish that book and you'll never mow your lawn.
This means you need to find an inner strength. An ability you failed to realized you pos…

September 2011 Sales Numbers

Another month of sales passes. While September, in some respects appeared slow, it was steady. I can attribute part of this to finally getting sales reports in from Apple, Diesel, and Kobo. While Apple & Diesel contributed one sale each for The Present, Kobo accounted for eight free sales of Copy Bird.

Speaking of Copy Bird, all is not as bad as it seems. On September 19th, Amazon bumped the price of the eBook back up to $0.99 US. I thought that was the end of watching the fun, as in one and a half months Copy Bird sold 4,800 copies. But I was wrong. Now that it got into Amazon's system and filtered through their algorithms, Copy Bird has consistently sold around two copies every day. This is good news because they are paying consumers, which means, if they like my work, they might search out more. Let's hope so!

I also released a new book, although the content isn't new besides its introduction. In eBook and print format you can now get all the stories that make up Book…

Are Free Books Worth The Cost?

In the beginning of July, I had an idea to help promote my books. I decided to make Copy Bird free on Amazon. It's quite a process to get Amazon to offer your book for free, because they require a price of $0.99 US or higher to sell eBooks with them. I got around this by putting the story up for free on Smashwords, which in turn makes it free to the retailers that Smashwords distributes to, such as Apple, Sony, and Kobo. When Amazon's bots find the book cheaper on other sites and/or you tell them that another site is selling the book cheaper on the book's Amazon product page, they will match it.
Copy Bird went free on Amazon in the beginning of August. I thought it was a resounding success! So much so that I made this face:

Note: Photo not taken at actual time of free offer.
During the time that it was free, about a month and a half, around 4,800 eBooks sold. Of course, the money I made on those sales was a big, fat zero. But, I reasoned this would give me good exposure, and …

Miscorrection: Preludes

It is a time of great change for the solar system. A group of rebels called the Karhath plot to take control of the planets.
A man named Daniel threatens to make the Karhath mission a failure by means of his wise, yet risky political moves.
Even if Daniel should succeed, the Karhath will stop at nothing to attain the power they strive to attain.

Available at the following locations:

Print edition available at Amazon and CreateSpace.
Miscorrection: Preludes
Over the course of three to four years, I came up with a story during my commute to work. As I thought about this story, I came up with the major plot points, cliffhangers, characters, and so on. But there was one problem: I never wrote the story!
Then, in early 2010, I noticed that Amazon offered the ability for any writer to self-publish their works on the Kindle. This excited me as I realized this would be a great avenue (along with all the others I have discovered) for me to write my story. I didn’t want to write a novel th…

The Forever Process

There's something that has happened as I continue to write my long story. Each day I chip away at finishing it, averaging around 1,000 words per day. It's amazing to think I have crossed the 30,000 word threshold now. Looking back at the past month of writing, it feels like forever ago that I started. How much closer am I to the finish? I'm not quite sure because I don't know what the final word count will be.  I could be halfway done or a third done. Who knows? I'm writing the story to its natural length and not setting a specific word count for completion. If I do this, I may add or subtract from the story, which in my opinion would be detrimental.

Here's a case in point. My last post mentioned that I have found I'm deviating from my original outline for the story. This is not a problem, because the story has become better because of it. This past week another similar breakthrough happened. As the story took shape in the writing, I realized some of the plo…