Locked

The Zombie Road book series and the Wounded Warrior Project. Multiple award winning, #1 best selling Zompoc that is different than most in the genre. "A gas-guzzling, gear-grinding thrill ride." AMA

David Simpson
Dec 6, 2017

I took an idea, turned it into a series of books and now it's doing extremely well in the self-publishing indie world of post-apocalyptic stories. It's been called "The thinking man's zombie apocalypse."

To give a little bit back to those veterans who wrote a blank check to the American people for 'up to and including their lives', one of the books has been donated to the Wounded Warrior Project. Every single penny earned from it goes directly to them, those men and women who got part of that check cashed.

The Wounded Warriors Project Book: 

http://a.co/ckKsgou

My page: 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/265507950527733/

Comments are locked

Conversation (54)

In three easy steps and under a minute you could be hosting your own AMA. Join our passionate community of AMA hosts and schedule your own AMA today.

Let's get started!

How may books will this series have?

Dec 8, 8:10PM EST0

The main story is a trilogy. The third book will be out before Christmas and it will wrap up the tale of Gunny and his family getting to a place of safety. There is another set of books planned building on what was created in the original story and will focus on a different character. 

Dec 12, 3:46PM EST0

Do you believe in the possible existence of zombies in the future? Why?

Dec 7, 5:31PM EST0

How long have you been supporting "The Wounded Warrior" project?

Dec 7, 10:56AM EST0

With this anthology? Since Veterans Day of this year, when it was published. Our modest goal is to raise $1,000 by the Army's Birthday on June 14th. So far we've sold about 350 books and we're up to about $600 so I'm pretty sure we'll reach the goal. 

Me, personally? I've haven't been 'tithing' on a regualr basis but there are only a few charities I will give money to. Wounded Warriors is one of them and I've been donating here and there to them for years.

Dec 7, 9:47PM EST0

What did you find was the best and most successful way of self-promoting your book? I have not published my book yet but I have facebook, instagram and twitter under my author name. Is there anything else I should be looking into before publishing and also once I have finally published?

Dec 7, 4:56AM EST0

Honestly, I a lot of it was luck. If you've read the stats, you know most writers, like 99%, never go full time. Most indies only make a few hundred bucks a year.  Of course, traditonally published writers average less than $5,000 so nobody is getting rich... Well, a few folks are but they are the rare ones. Having said all that, don't be discouraged, if you are a writer, you write. 

My marketing: I was active in a handful of groups and not just as a book spammer. I had 'facebook friends' that would buy the book just because I was their 'friend.' I made it availble on every platform, especially KU,  People actually liked it and reviews started coming in on Amazon. That is important, so I held contests and donated books to charity events, etc. Anything to get your name out there and get folks to leave reviews.  I was losing money hand over fist at first but I wouldn't give my work away on Amazon. It has worth and to me, that was $2.99, not .99 or free. The best thing that happened was I won a contest... I paid the most money.... at a charity auction for the services of an amature book publicist. She Facebooked the heck out of the book and it took off. I still hold contests, try to be active in the groups, donate to charities, etc. Always promoting.

One edge I had, since I was a truck driver (I still truck 2 days a week to keep insurance, etc but write 'full time' now) I put the books on audio and as I traveled, I spammed the heck out of every Truckstop, rest area, and tourist trap I could get a rig into with postcards. They were eyecatching, free and had step by step instructions on how to download and start listening to the greatest story every written about truckers and zombies. I've sold thousands of audiobooks and I think a lot of those sales came from the postcards.

Friend me on Facebook or PM me, I'll help if I can but there is no easy route. 

Dec 7, 8:39AM EST0

Thanks! I will definitely PM you when I get closer to publishing. I have a full time job so it won't break the bank if I never get to become a 'full-time writer'. Don;t get me wrong, I would love that! But I can handle it if I make a pittance. To me it's more about people reading my work and enjoying it. Money is just a bonus!

I aboslutely love your truckstop idea! Audio books are a big hit and you had the perfect platform to take advantage of that! Congratulations on all your success, you deserve it for all your hard work! 

Thanks for all your advice =)

Dec 7, 8:54AM EST0

Should zombies be flesh eating and define their diet as "humans" only?

Dec 6, 10:21PM EST0

In my world, they are due to the nature of their infection. Great buffalo herds will wander the plains, lions and tigers will pad through the streets of abandoned cities, packs of feral dogs will be new deadly foe.

Other writers have them eating anything that moves. 

Dec 7, 8:15AM EST0

Can you share the link for us to marvel your written work?

Dec 6, 12:50PM EST0

Why, yes I can. Thank you for asking

http://a.co/0Syok5w

Dec 7, 8:11AM EST0

How do you want the world to end, zombie apocalypse, solar flare (solar meltdown), series of volcano eruptions (just like Jurassic time) or Waterworld (north pole ice melting) or nuclear holocaust?

Dec 6, 11:00AM EST0

Dang. I have to choose? I would definately take zombie apocalypse. People would survive. Even if they didn't, the planet would live on. The others are 100% global destruction.

Dec 7, 8:10AM EST0

If you have to be present during the apocalypse, how could you save yourself and your family from the zombies?

Dec 5, 11:52PM EST0

Guns. Lots of guns.

Dec 7, 8:08AM EST0

If a reader will be greatly indulged and deeply involved in the stories, wouldn't they develop the fear of the future?

Dec 4, 7:00AM EST0

No, it's fiction. Although there really is nano technology and there really is a super soldeir serum and there really are fanatics that would dance a mad caper as the world burned and there really are drugs that make you eat peoples faces....

Nevermind. I change my answer to YES! The future is scary.

Dec 7, 8:07AM EST0

Are you always interested in apocalyptic themes and where do you get the inspiration for all the gory details of your plot?

Dec 4, 1:54AM EST0

I've always been fan of apocalyptic books, whether on a personal scale like As I lay Dying or  Lord of the Flies to big epics such as Lucifer's Hammer or The Stand. The details spill out of my head, I suppose from years of reading and watching monster stories.

Dec 7, 8:04AM EST0

How can you still maintain positivity when you have to be actively creative for your scare-provoking novel?

Dec 4, 12:22AM EST0

Hank Garner (from author stories podcast) jokingly called my books something like a "Shiny, happy zombie apocalypse" (and I'm misquoting but that was the idea.) My characters are the good guys and good guys always win. Just like a John Wayne movie, you know he might got through some stuff but in the end, the good guys win. I'm not a fan of Grim Dark where everything sucks and everybody is a jerk and nothing good ever happens and the characters you grow to love get killed off all the time. People die in my books but when you read the last page, I don't want to leave the reader feeling bummed out. I want it to be a good read.

Dec 7, 7:57AM EST0

How long have you been a writer?

Dec 3, 7:01PM EST0

Third grade. I never stopped writing completely but didn't actually get serious about it until probably about June of this year, 2017. The first book was just a "there, I did it." personal goal. I had no proof readers, no beta's, no marketing plan, no thoughts beyond "There, I did it." 

It was just another book from an unknown writer in an over saturated market in a genre that was on the popularity decline. I doubted I would sell 20 copies. It did and I was as surprised as anyone. On the second book, I took it a lot more seriously because I felt I had a duty to put out a quality product so I tired a lot harder to be a writer, not just a guy checking a dream off his bucketlist.

Dec 7, 7:41AM EST0

Are you considering other generes if you are going to write a book in the future?

Dec 3, 12:15AM EST0

Yes, I have a few ideas, all of them involving trucks and truckers. One book is a prequel that goes into cloak and dagger/thriller territory about a few of the characters in Zombie Road. Their story is hinted at in the books but it's a big story, not something I wanted to delve into in the midst of the zombie uprising.

Another is a ghost girl that helps a driver, in her limited way, to catch the predators that haunt Americas freeways. 

My short story ideas pile is tall. I wish I could write faster...

Dec 7, 7:50AM EST0

What/who convinced you to write book series about zombies?

Dec 2, 7:31AM EST0

It's a genre I like, anything dystopian really.

As a first time author, I thought I should write about something I had a bit of knowledge about. Trucks and zombies fit the bill nicely. I THOUGHT  it would be easy and I had enough new ideas to make it interesting and different but not so far removed from the tropes zombie lovers love that it really wasn't a zombie book anymore.

Dec 7, 7:33AM EST0

If you have to spend a time with a character in your book series, who would that be and where will you bring your friend?

Dec 1, 8:55AM EST0

Many of the characters based on real individuals. When I first started writing, I couldn't keep track of all the made up people so I just modeled the characters after friends and folks I have known over the years.  If I could spend time with one of them, it would have to be Griz and we'd be where we usually were when we hung out. Riding Harleys, hanging out in bars and stirring up trouble.

Dec 7, 7:28AM EST0

Does "Walking Dead" tv help you define your descriptions for your zombies?

Dec 1, 12:57AM EST0

I suppose it helps visualize them, I watch it every week, but my undead, due to the nature of the virus, are mighty speedy.  They are wicked fast and strong, as much as a human body can be. They're not "super zombies", just adrenaline hyped and super aggressive.

Dec 7, 7:24AM EST0

Are you a wounded warrior yourself who, at one point in your life faced the battlefield?

Nov 30, 5:23PM EST0

I'm a veteran and I've shed blood and broken bones for my country. I was a tanker in the Army. Not in battle, though. I've never fired a shot in anger. Those darn tanks can hurt you quick if your'e a dumb Private. ;-)

Dec 7, 7:21AM EST0

What important warning do you want to communicate to your reader about the apocalypse?

Nov 27, 2:58PM EST0

Be prepared to survive for six months on your own.  After that, I don't think supplies will be a problem for a while. There is a study out that declares 90% of Americans would be dead in 18 months if there were an EMP blast (whether nuclear or natural) that took out the electrical grid. That's 300 million people dead. I think there would be plenty of supplies for years and thats the angle I approach the situation in the books. The problem is the zombies, not starvation.

Dec 7, 7:18AM EST0

What would you say to a movie being made of your books and who would you like to play Gunny?

Nov 27, 1:43PM EST0

I would say yes, thank you very much.  I think a slightly aged Ryan Goslilng because I like his quiet, thoughtful mannerisms. I picture Gunny as a 45 year old Clint Eastwood. Western Clint, not cop Clint.

Dec 7, 7:11AM EST0

You've mentioned listening to audio books while working/driving, However do you do any 'voice' to text for ideas on your book/s while you are driving? Which type of 'app' do you recommend for others who are driving and come up with an awesome idea and can't (or shouldn't) write it down because they are in a vehicle and can't pull over?

Nov 27, 1:40PM EST0

I have and iPhone and I'm sure Androids have a similar app, but  I just use the notes app that came standard and talk to Siri. It's garbled, of course but at the next stop, I can go back and edit, make sure I have the basic ideas down.  I've used other apps in the past, Manuscript comes to mind, but I lost a lot of ideas and notes with the new update since it's no longer supported and I can't even open it. 

So, notepad. It's basic, you can open different pages for different ideas. I have one for short story ideas, one for the current book with things I want to include, etc.

Dec 7, 7:08AM EST0

If you could hang out and have a conversation with any author, dead or alive, who would you pick ? And why ?

Nov 27, 1:05PM EST0

If language wasn't a barrier, (and why should it if we're speaking with the dead) I think Saint John who wrote Revelations. He would be a guy to have long and meaningful conversations with. 

Dec 7, 7:03AM EST0

Where would you like to be as an Author in 5 yrs?

Nov 27, 12:56PM EST0

Lounging about on a beach, eating bon-bons and sipping tall, frosty beverages.

Dec 7, 6:56AM EST0

What was your insperation to write? What got you started on this path?

Nov 27, 12:55PM EST0

Listening to audobooks all day while out trucking. Some were great, some where so bad I thought I could do better. I've wanted to be a writer since I was a kid but you know, you grow up and put away childish things. I'm glad I remembered the dream and decided to do something about it, not just keep telling myself "You really ought to try, one of these days."

Dec 7, 6:55AM EST0

What is your favorite SHTF tip?

Nov 27, 12:42PM EST0

Guns. Lots of guns.

Dec 7, 6:51AM EST0

Do you think you will have a book where all Vechials meets because a small town is being taken over and your team is the only one that can help? 

Nov 27, 11:08AM EST0

Something somewhat similar. Book 3 addresses that. It should be out in a few weeks.

Dec 7, 6:52AM EST0

How many books do plan to write in the series? Will you use any fan names or places you have been. I have all kinds of questions. People call me noisy but I just love to ask and learn.

Nov 27, 11:05AM EST0

The main story of the truckers trying to find a safe place and Gunny reuniting with his family are concluded in the trilogy. The story continues with another set of planned books but it shifts focus from the Truckers to a younger protagonist and living in the new post apoc world.

There are a few fans built into the series. A lot of indie authors promote their work with contests in the different Facebook groups (Reading Zombie, Zombie Book of the Month Club, Reanimated Writers, All Things Zombie, ZombieFiend, Good Morning Zompoc just to name a few) I did the same with charity auctions for a few in our community that needed a little help. Casy, a central bad guy, won an auction. Usually the characters die a horrible zombie death. He paid a lot to the fund raiser so I decided to keep him around for a while. Bridget is another early fan.

Most of the locations are real in the books. The ones that aren't really are. The names have been changed to protect the innocent. Or maybe me from angry residents who didn't want their town overrun with zombies.

Dec 7, 6:50AM EST0

Will you do any more cons? Would you be willing to travel to North Carolina? Pam

Nov 27, 11:02AM EST0

I have another one scheduled for March near Chattanooga and I'll be at Walker Stalker next year in Atlanta. I haven't committed to Scares That Care, I'm probably only going to do cons where I can get the Zombie Road Mustang on the floor. 

Dec 7, 6:40AM EST0
About #AuthorsAMA

Welcome to #AuthorsAMA, an AMA Event channel for authors and their important work sharing their knowledge with others.

The #AuthorsAMA channel (http://www.AuthorsAMA.com) is owned and operated by AMAfeed, LLC.