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Building Shepherd - Launched 3 book pages & more! 🥳
Books build better humans. Shepherd makes exploring and discovering new books fun while helping authors get their books in front of the most likely readers. Please join us as a founding member if you want to help support us.
Summary: November 7th to November 18th
Launch of 3 new book pages + book explore! 🥳
On November 15th, we launched the following...
Individual book pages
I wanted to create a page that celebrates each book recommended on Shepherd. I wanted to make it unique and focus on why our community thinks you should read that book. Here is the result...
Books like "this book" page
Want to find new books via books you already know and love? Now you can! Try a few here...
Books like Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain
Books like Beloved by Toni Morrison
Books like Dracula by Bram Stoker
Books like Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly
What book lists have x book?
This is a simple one that a lot of readers requested. Now you can see all the book recommendation lists with a specific book to further explore books and authors...
Book Explore Points
We added book explore points across Shepherd so you can easily dive into that book! Just click the “Explore this book” link under any book. It will open with a description of that book and links to why that book is recommended, similar books, lists with that book, related topics, and soon genres (try it here).
We still have some bugs and fixes for the above pages, but it feels so good to see them alive. I've been working on these pages for a VERY long time.
And, we are also celebrating... 🥳
New record: 200,000+ visitors in one month!!
We hit 231,000 visitors in October! That feels good, as the site is starting to hum. The next celebration point is at 400,000 visitors!
My goal for 2023 is to hit 1,000,000 visitors a month. Not only would that mean that readers love us, but it would also put us financially in a good place. My big goal for 2023 is to reach financial sustainability (a fancy way of saying we would break even with our current costs). Fingers crossed!
What happened over the last 2 weeks?
It was insanely busy as I caught up on emails, tickets, and odds and ends left over from me being on vacation in October.
I got part 1 of the genre/age integration spec written...
I got part 1 of this spec to the developer yesterday. He and I are going to talk about it soon. This is a complex project, and the part 1 spec is 21 pages long.
What would part 1 do?
Integrate genre, age, and some other data into Shepherd Admin.
Give me the ability to create bookshelves around genres, ages, and mixes of the above.
I am working on the spec for part 2 now. What will part 2 do?
Add filters to the bookshelf and books-like pages so you can filter to see only specific genres or ages.
A ton more work to show genre and age data on the frontend.
I will share more as I get an estimate from the developer. I hope we can start on it in late December, but January is more likely.
What is going on outside of Shepherd?
My family and I are going to Dublin to visit old friends and cook them a Thanksgiving meal! I am super excited as I haven't seen them in ages, and they have a new baby I am looking forward to meeting!
My son has a cold, so I hope that it passes quick. And I hope I don't get it (feeling a bit run down).
What am I reading?
Salvation by Peter F. Hamilton
The Prisoner of Paradise by Rob Samborn.
Prentice Ash by Matt Barron
I didn't have much time to read these last 2 weeks. I am hoping I get a lot more time on my trip.