In case you haven’t noticed, the crowd-sourcing craze has gotten a bit out of hand. Everyone seems to be ready to start their own crowd-sourcing website, and the ones who aren’t doing that, seem to be creating their own requests for crowd-sourcing. In fact, our local arts committee has created their very own website to attempt to help fund local non-profits in moving forward on their projects.
Don’t get me wrong, I think this is fantastic. The fact that people with ideas can move away from traditional forms of funding for their projects is a wonderful new frontier for everyone who has something special they wish to give to the world. And the process itself is perfect. I mean, you’re not looking for investors or donations, at least in the bigger crowd-sourcing sites, but instead, you’re creating something more akin to a pre-ordering option for those who have interest in your product.
For the past couple years, I’ve looked at the front page of kickstarter.com and thought about how fantastic it would be to be able to use this site to fund my interests Two main things have kept me away from moving forward. 1. Hating the idea of asking people for money. 2. The fear of being one of the people who fail in gathering the funds they are looking for.
The first one is pretty stupid. I mean, as previously mentioned, you’re not actually asking for people to donate money to your cause, you’re offering a product for a fee. That’s totally reasonable. There’s still some piece of me that feels like I’m asking for a favor when ever I get involved in something like that. . . but that’s probably a bit of insecurity on my part, feeling as though no one actually wants what I have to sell.
The second one, I feel, is pretty reasonable. As someone who still feels rather insecure about his art (as I believe most true artists do), the prospect of putting myself out there with a specific deadline in place just feels. . . well, asking for failure, even with the 44% success rate kickstarter claims to have.
The other piece of this dilemma I pretend I’m in is that I continue to feel rushed to get my work out into the world. I want to be done polishing it and release it into the wild and see how it does out on its own. I crave to be at that point. Yet. . . I know there are some things I could do to better prepare it for autonomy (not authonomy, the website I quack on about all too often). Not to mention, there are several things I’d like to do differently in the release process that I just can’t do without the funding to back it up, such as go through an actual printing house to pre-print a run of books, instead of going with the more costly print on demand options available. I’d love to be able to go about actual marketing techniques in order to put the name of the book in front of more people. I dream about working with artists to produce small scale comic strips regarding the characters in the book. And, honestly, I want very little more than to be able to fund my time in order to be able to focus more on my writing throughout the day, instead of attempting to squeeze it into the few gaps in occupied time my day never has.
Now, those are all pipe dreams, I’m more than well enough aware. The idea of getting a grand off of any kickstarter project I put in place is barely an accessible dream in my book, yet that would allow me to afford a better editing process and get the book in the best shape possible.
I’ve spent the last couple years contemplating all the different things I could do for Buddy (and the following books) if only I had the time and money. . . all the time understanding that there’s a place which could assist me in at least gaining a portion of that equation.
So, with that all in mind, and the already delayed release of the book, I’m reconsidering my position on the release and looking toward the idea of crowd-sourcing the funding of these dream pieces of the project. At the very least, I believe in my work and feel as though I should give it the best possible chance of success.
I may yet change my mind, as I move forward on this, but wanted to put it out to my readers on things they would like to see as possible rewards, if I do open up a kickstarter project for this.
The few ideas I have currently are as follows (feel free to let me know your thoughts on any of these as well):
A BUDDY HERO AND THE DEFENDERS OF AMERICA sticker (not yet designed)
An ebook copy of THE LEGEND OF BUDDY HERO
A print copy of THE LEGEND OF BUDDY HERO
A BUDDY HERO AND THE DEFENDERS OF AMERICA T-shirt (not yet designed)
An invitation to the release party (only opened if enough funding is gathered)
A walk-on character in the sequel (THE RISE OF THE FAT MOGUL) named/based on you.
A walk-on superhero in the sequel (The RISE OF THE FAT MOGUL) named/based on you.
A walk-on supervillain in the sequel (THE RISE OF THE FAT MOGUL) named/based on you.
I’d love to hear your ideas on things you may like to see as options available. Feel free to leave something in the comments, here or on facebook, or send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Like I said, I’m still on the fence about the whole thing, so I’d love to hear any thoughts you have regarding this prospect at all.
Have a good one!