Explaining The Loves of King Solomon Series

Smith_Shepherdess_EB CoverYesterday I was allowed to do a "cover reveal" for the newest upcoming book in The Loves of King Solomon series. The book is the second e-book short about Abishag the Shunammite called The Shepherdess. (I always love the covers Revell does for my books! Don't they do a great job?) Inevitably, when one of these short stories releases, I am asked if it is available in paperback. So I thought perhaps it was time to explain what this series is and how it came about.

The Loves of King Solomon began with a question from me to my agent and then morphed into an idea in the mind of one of the great women at Revell. At the time, I was just finishing Rachel's story and thinking ahead to The Crimson Cord. The question had nothing to do with Solomon, but a mention of his name came up in the discussion and thus, The Loves of King Solomon was born!

But what is this series about? And what is an e-book short?

The series is a set of four short stories about four individual women that it is presumed Solomon married or possibly loved. The first is The Desert Princess about Solomon's first wife Naamah. She is the mother of Solomon's heir Rehoboam. The second, The Shepherdess, is about King David's last wife Abishag, who remained a virgin and passed into Solomon's court when King David died. The third is not yet titled, but is about Solomon's Egyptian wife. And the fourth, which I plan to write this year, is about the Queen of Sheba, who visited Solomon during the height of his reign.

Each story is between 25,000 and 27,000 words long, and with this series, I decided to write each story from just that woman's point of view. In other words, they are each written in first person, unlike my full-length novels, which are written in third person.

The Shepherdess will release in August 2015. The Egyptian wife's story in August 2016. The Queen of Sheba's story in August 2017 according to the current plan.

Each one of these stories will only be available in e-book format. That means there are no print copies to sell. If readers want to read them, they can be found wherever e-books are sold. If you don't have an e-book reader but have an iPad or a computer, Kindle offers free apps for their e-book reader, and if you own an iPhone or an Apple computer, the stories are available through iBooks. They are also available for Nook and other e-readers.

Now that said...whew!...when all four short stories are completed, I will spend the following year reworking this whole Loves of King Solomon series into a new book. I am not yet certain how I'm going to handle this as it is a type of story I've never done before, but my current plan is to rework the four short stories (so you won't feel like you have already read it and it's just a repeat) into third person accounts and include Solomon's point of view. I may also add in the points of view of a few other people. For now, these plans are still in the works, so please don't hold me to them. That is, the point of view may remain first person but I think I will enjoy telling the story better if I change it up.

For now, all I know is that my goal is to give readers a new experience when the final compilation of short stories releases. THAT book (and only that book in this series) will be available in print form as well as ebook. If you miss the ebook versions, you will not be reading the exact same story in print when it finally releases as a complete book. So if you want to read these first person accounts, I would suggest finding a way as mentioned above, to read them on a computer, etc. They are short, so reading them should not take too long.

I hope that all makes sense and answers the questions of where to find a copy of this digital short story in print. It's just not going to happen at this point as the first four short stories in the series were designed to be e-book only.

I've also noticed that some people seemed unhappy with the fact that the first in the series The Desert Princess is too short. I imagine that is because they were expecting a longer, fleshed-out story like my full-length novels. But these short stories don't allow for that as my full-lengths are at least 90,000 words vs. the 25,000 for the short stories. I hope that does not disappoint.

I've had a lot of fun writing these first person accounts of some of the women in Solomon's life. It helps me to understand him better and perhaps grasp why he did the things he did and account for the choices he made along life's way. Stay tuned for things from his point of view in a few years.

Shalom and blessings~