Fabulous feedback on the last post, thank you all.
In response to Ian and Allison, especially – my thought about Kickstarter was not that it would replace all the hard work and relentless progress you discuss (and exemplify) – but rather purely as an adjunct to it. As an additional means of advertising, rather than purely a means of making money off my writing directly. Between the hundreds of readers here on this site, plus facebook, twitter, boards, etc – it was my thought that I could, potentially, gain enough traction on a modest kickstarter campaign to achieve some success.
Also, looking at successful (and unsuccessful) kickstarter campaigns – it seems that Tobias Buckell has the right of it:
I think there are three things that make for a Kickstarter success:
1) An intriguing product
2) Created by an entity that has proven it can deliver it
3) Created by an entity that has a following (or publicity reach)
Any two of those create an atmosphere where I think success is more likely. Hit all three, you’re likely to see something interesting.
To which I would add that being able to create a compelling kickstarter campaign is a necessary fourth thing. A lot of the less successful campaigns have decidedly non-compelling awards. I would argue that I have #1 and as soon as I finish the novel, #2. I certainly do not have an internet-scale following, but it’s not exactly zero, either.
As for the campaign itself, here’s what I tentatively imagined as a Veil War kickstarter project:
$5 Mention in the credits (included in all bigger awards)
$10 eBook (included in all bigger rewards)
$25 Trade paperback
$35 Signed trade paper
$50 Limited edition signed hardcover
$75 Artwork – nicely matted and so on
$100 Red Shirt – you will be named, and then killed
$150 Red Shirt + Signed Hardcover + Artwork
$200 Minor Character – you appear, as yourself, in the story.
$250 Minor Character + Signed Hardcover + Artwork
$500 Bonus Story – 2000+ word story, all for yourself to do with as you choose
$750 Supremely grisly and/or heroic death
$1000 Super double-plus mega pack – all smaller rewards in one awesome package deal
I’d also thought that perhaps some other things could be worked in:
- various types of merch, the sort that is easily created on CafePress or similar sites and based on the artwork.
- access to background information and projected storylines.
- meet with the author personally or via internets
Don’t want to overload it, really – but it seems that there are a fair number of people who like being patrons, and will actually pull the trigger on the larger awards. The big question of course is whether any of those people read the Veil War.
My thinking is that if it works, fantastic! I get money, additional publicity, feedback, and a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart-cockles. After it’s over, I go on and put the book up for sale on Amazon and proceed as normal. If it doesn’t work, so what? I finish the editing and so on and put the book up for sale on Amazon anyway. It seems perfectly complementary, and wouldn’t in anyway interfere with what I would be doing regardless, and might actually help it along.
What say you?