Derek Murphy

Derek Murphy is a book editor turned book designer with a Ph.D. in Literature. He's been featured on CNN and spoken at dozens of writing conferences around the world. These days he mostly writes young adult fantasy and science fiction, while helping authors write and publish bestselling books. FREE GUIDE: Sell your work without selling out.

How to use your book’s back matter to MASSIVELY boost your fanbase, get more shares, and explode your platform.

So my books are doing pretty good; I’ve moved Shearwater to permafree and got over 5,000 downloads this month. But that made me realize I was probably missing a MAJOR opportunity to connect with those readers, so I checked my back copy (the material at the end of my book) and found it seriously wanting. I also realized, most of …

Read More »

Imagination as the poetics of cognition (and the genius of solitude)

When I finish my PhD, I’ll finally be able to use my love of research to write about truly interesting things. One my next projects will be “Paid to Create” – which, originally was going to simply be about how to make money with your creativity, kind of a practical manifesto for this blog. However I’m realizing that won’t satisfy …

Read More »

Book cover design is NOT subjective

I see a lot of authors asking for feedback between a few cover design choices. This always has mixed results, since people on Facebook don’t know anything about book cover design, they probably aren’t your target market, they probably aren’t ideal readers of your genre, and they aren’t designers. So what inevitably happens is, authors think, “The results are pretty …

Read More »

Why every author needs a virtual assistant (how to outsource your book marketing)

Recently I wrote a post about how it doesn’t make sense for me to market your books for you (or even hire virtual assistants to help you do it). But that doesn’t mean VA’s aren’t crazy useful, if you hire your own. Authors always complain about book marketing because they just want to focus on their writing; and it’s true, …

Read More »

107 inspirational AirBNB rentals you can use for a magical writing retreat

Since finishing my PhD in literature, my wife and I are truly location independent and write full-time. One of the biggest productivity hacks I’ve found is to put myself in beautiful and inspiring environments (that are mostly distraction free). While some argue they can “write from anywhere” – I’m a firm believer in what Cal Newport calls the “grand gesture” mode …

Read More »