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I stumbled upon a few projects that some authors have on Kickstarter and when I looked through the archives ( under Author or Publishing) there were a surprising number of writers who successfully raised $ 5,000 and up from...."investors "(?)

A few of these folks made some very nice videos as introductions to their projects

What is the take on this from you guys?
Is it an additional expense a writer needs to look into ( same as hiring an editor, cover artist) in order to beat the odds and see your book in print? ( or to cover the expense of making it an ebook?)

From what I saw there are a number of people willing to donate between $ 1.00 and $50.00 to give the writer a chance at covering the cost of getting published

Or do you think it's a scam by writers who really couldn't make it through normal channels?
Or maybe they discovered Kickstarter and decided to cheat their way ahead of everyone else?

Or is it a smart way to grow a fan base?

Sure beats waiting 3 or 4 months for a Trad publisher to send that dreaded reject letter

I mean- there ARE several dozen in Kickstarter who DID raise the funding and now have a book to sell

Thoughts?
 

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A lot of the Book Kickstarters I've seen are for either anthologies that have several big-name authors pledged to do stories/novelettes for them and/or people like the Dresden Codak guy who started one to make a book of his comic. IE, people with existing fanbases and enough professionals on board to both promote the kickstarter and make it look legit.

Also, with KS, you offer incentives to backers, like copes of the book, etc. So in many cases it's just a way to get people to donate/pre-order the book in question, sometimes with extra perks.

Personally I'm not a fan of individual book kickstarters for small or unknown authors. Why does anyone care? How many people are aspiring novelists? What makes your book so special people should donate before it's out rather than wait until it is to buy it?

Who's going to throw money at you if you're just some guy with a cute video (wait, don't answer that)? If you've got a fanbase, you can probably pull it off and make it success with a smaller goal amount but I wouldn't say it's a good way to BUILD a fanbase. Usually asking people for money isn't.

I don't think it's a scam if you're clear what you're offering, but still, why throw money at you?

Just my opinion, obviously. I'm sure it's worked for some people and will again.
 
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It really would be a scam if I personally did this since I don't need $5,000 to get a book out (or $1,000...) I guess I could use the money for a more expensive cover, but my main novel series' cover artist does very good work for $65 (formerly $50), and for my non-series book I found a beautiful premade for $20, so... meh?

I guess if I really felt the need for an illustrated cover it would be different.
 

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Kickstarter is also being used to generate interest in film projects and web series. These tend to be more expensive projects. I'm curious to find out how well it works.
 

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Doesn't bother me since it's ultimately the people donating money who decide whether something's worthwhile.

I think that $5000 is a lot to publish a book, but hey, if someone wants to give someone money to do that, that's their choice.

Hmm, what if I used it to raise money to make an erotic film, and offered everyone who donated a cameo appearance?
 

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I've never really understood Kickstarter, unless the object is simply to raise awareness of the upcoming book. I can easily release a book for under $400, so it seems simplest to me to save for a few months and come up with the money on my own. I'd feel weird asking strangers for $5,000 for what I can do for myself with far less. I'm not judging anybody who does that, since it's really none of my business. I just feel like there must be some extra purpose to Kickstarter that I'm missing. Anybody can afford to self-publish an ebook (self-made covers, self-done formatting, and friends to edit), so surely there's more to it than money? 
 
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Dara England said:
I've never really understood Kickstarter, unless the object is simply to raise awareness of the upcoming book. I can easily release a book for under $400, so it seems simplest to me to save for a few months and come up with the money on my own. I'd feel weird asking strangers for $5,000 for what I can do for myself with far less. I'm not judging anybody who does that, since it's really none of my business. I just feel like there must be some extra purpose to Kickstarter that I'm missing. Anybody can afford to self-publish an ebook (self-made covers, self-done formatting, and friends to edit), so surely there's more to it than money?
The desire for a $2,000 illustrated cover, $2,000 of advertising, $500 of Fiverr reviews, and $425 for a Kirkus review. With $75 left over for booze... ;D
 

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I don't think 5000 to publish a book is too much. Part of doing it is also the writer's time. We do the work, we should get paid for the work. I look at it as a way of taking pre-orders (or, when I support a book project, of getting in on it with bonus stuff and making sure I get the pre-order price). If it helps writers pay their bills so they have more time to write more awesome books, that's sweet.  No cheating involved.
 
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