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Disaster mitigation expert becomes best-selling post-apocalyptic author


Central Iowa resident Nicholas Sansbury Smith goes from Valley High School to the University of Iowa to the bestseller list.

After a decade of working for Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management, local 30-something Nicholas Sansbury Smith decided to go a different direction. The young professional remembers having a passion for writing ever since his boyhood days growing up in West Des Moines. Coupling that passion with the experience he’d received at his 9-to-5, Sansbury Smith wrote a book titled “Orbs” in his spare time and self-published it on Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP).

The book was a hit, and the young writer has since quit his day job. Now writing fulltime, Sansbury Smith has gone on to publish more than 20 books while becoming a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. “The Hell Divers,” “The Extinction Cycle” and “Trackers,” are some of his more popular series, he writes post-apocalyptic novels — a popular subgenre of science fiction which generally tell a tale of the Earth’s coming to an end or nearly doing so due to technological collapses or near collapses.

The success of his self-published works led Sansbury Smith to publishing using conventional means, but he has returned to self publishing and is diligently producing new work. The first book in his new spinoff, “Extinction Cycle: Dark Age” series, was self-published and released in late July.

The keys to writing and self-publishing success, according to Sansbury Smith, include disciplined writing — he pens a book about every three months — utilizing a team of 5-10 proofreaders and editors, marketing, self-promotion, having an entrepreneurial spirit, and selecting top-notch cover art.

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KDP is accessible to authors worldwide. The service offers a free and fast way to self-publish eBooks and paperbacks. According to its representatives, hundreds of thousands of authors have self-published using KDP. Authors maintain creative control, retain their rights and set their own prices.

Sansbury Smith graduated from West Des Moines Valley High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Iowa and graduated with a master’s degree in Public Administration from Drake University. He currently lives in central Iowa with his wife, their dogs, and a house full of books.

For more information about the author or to browse through his book titles and offerings, visit www.amazon.com/Nicholas-Sansbury-Smith/e/B00BVNB3TC.

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