• http://twitter.com/CampbellsBookS Cassandra Campbell

    Given the fact that sel

    • http://twitter.com/scottandjames Scott James

      I’m a self-published author who used Kickstarter and CreateSpace, and I wanted to offer my N+1th answer on this one :)

      I had a great experience with Kickstarter. While the act of publishing the book on CreateSpace cost little more than my time to learn their system, I wanted to raise money to pay for an editor, proofer, graphic designer, and some marketing after I published it. It worked out great, and I raised enough money to pay for those things without going in the hole.

      It helped me build my audience up before publishing, which has been great. I got 106 people who donated. At least half of those then promoted me on their facebook/twitter/etc. when I published and sent them the book. That’s also 106 new people on my email list. I also found that people were psyched to be on the thank you page or get a signed copy and were willing to donate $25 or $50 for that.

      It’s helped market my book as well. I’ve gotten interviews and guest posting opportunities specifically because I funded myself through kickstarter. At this point, people who got the book through kickstarter are starting to finish it and post their reviews on Amazon as well.

      As you say, GoodReads is a great avenue for most of that as well. I found that Kickstarter (as could any crowdfunding platform) got me started on that road.

      For my video, I don’t know much beyond simple iMovie, so I asked around to a few pro video friends until I found someone who was willing to shoot and edit but defer their payment until after I got funded. Then I built his fee into the $ I was raising. That worked out great. (And we agreed that if I didn’t get funded, I didn’t need to pay him.) He got a unique portfolio piece and I got a video. You can see it here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/scottjames/sidewalk-ritual-the-novel-a-social-publishing-proj

      • Kristen McLean

        I agree with Scott that Kickstarter is as much a social community platform as any that I mentioned within the article. Using Kickstarter effectively gives you direct audience engagement, a super platform for testing the viability of your project before you spend any money publishing, and a potential core of fans who will help you promote your work because they are directly invested in your success. Also, as Scott mentioned, it can also lead to great collaborations along the way. Creating a successful Kickstarter campaign is an exercise in defining and articulating your “mission” in such a way that people understand what you’re trying to do, and why they should care–great practice for anyone who wants to have a creative career. If you can’t get people excited about your proposal, what makes you think you can get them excited about the book when you publish? It does take a little bravery and some focused effort, but I promise you will learn a lot and come away from the experience with a different perspective.