Saturday, 27 June 2015

Crowdfunding for book projects

Melissa Brown
Melissa Brown is an author based in Norwich who published her novel ‘Becoming Death’ with funds raised from the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter. Melissa gave a great talk last Friday at the Norfolk And Norwich Millennium Library on this web-based method of raising money for business and personal projects. Here’s a little of what Words And Women learned from the talk:

Crowdfunding is a funding method based on donations. People help to fund projects by paying a donation and in return for the donation the supporter receives a reward or a perk, eg a postcard, a copy of a book, a T-shirt or a poster. Donations can be as small as £1. The reward or perk is determined by the size of the donation. The aim is to attract as many people to donate to your project as possible. Melissa needed £1297 to publish her novel: this sum covered an editor’s input, a cover design as well as publishing costs. She achieved this by attracting 51 donations; most backers donated the smallest sum of £1 but one backer bid a magnificent £140 (the reward here was to be a character in Melissa’s book, in fact to be one of the victims and to suggest how they might die!).

Crowdfunding is done through web-based platforms. The most common is Kickstarter, the one which Melissa used for her project. Melissa says the process is quite straight forward. All the info needed is on the Kickstarter site.You just  sign up for a Kickstarter account, fill in your project details and load up a short promotional video. It should be noted though that if you don’t attract enough donations and don’t meet your target amount/your monetary goal for your project then the bids won't be collected and you will receive nothing. If you reach your funding goal then Kickstarter like all the other crowdfunding platforms will take a percentage. Kickstarter takes 5%, so you are encouraged to build this amount into your funding goal.

It is hard to raise funds for book projects. The more popular projects tend to be inventions and computer games. However, Melissa says it’s worth doing because even if you don’t meet your funding goal you will have generated lots of publicity and made many new contacts.

In our next post we will look at the other crowdfunding platforms out there.
An Interview with RosieSherwood posted on this blog  22/11/14  is worth look at too because this has more info on crowdfunding. 

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