The World of Kickstarter

I just perused Kickstarter the site where you can get people to fund your projects. I went there for the project Freewrite (used to be Hemingwrite). Yes it is ugly as sin. It operates exactly like a typewrite, there is a backspace, but no cut no paste. You set it up to your wifi and apparently syncs all of your stuff like a cloud. It is for distraction free writing. Got a 5000 words to write today? Whack it away and then sync it to your computer and into your word processor.

I could use something like that. For instance right now I am supposed to be studying and then thought of something I just had to look up on the internet. I forgot what it was by the time I got online and that was over a half hour ago!

The price is a little much $399 I think it said.

Anyway, after that I thought I would look over what other types of projects there were at Kickstarter. I had heard there were movie projects on there. And that makes sense, movies are expensive and are often financed by such means generally.

And then I saw the category Publishing. I can understand some publishing works needing funding, large research oriented books. But I saw a slew of normal fiction projects in there. Man, be careful of those!

Now I am not saying that it would be wrong to start a Kickstarter campaign because you think you have a great story to tell and would like to take six months off to get it done. I would love to do something like that. Although I wouldn’t do it until I had some miles under my belt as I think I am an unreliable investment at this time.

Some I saw there were (and probably deservedly so) left to atrophy with a day left of funding and no contributors. I wonder if, in all that time with no funding, they were able to get any of the project completed? If I were to start a Kickstarter campaign for a novel and received no funding, what would keep me from writing it? If the funding makes no difference in the completion of the project, what for the funding?

There could be things that could help the project especially if it is a self-published endeavor. A hired editor, printer, cover artist, etc, etc.

I am going to go back there because I wonder if there is a legitimate writer out there somewhere not able to get published but talented. Maybe this person is disabled or something and can’t hold down a job or whatever. Maybe this person had the bad luck of the draw and has come up against every pissed off slush reader in existence.

Probably not, most of the stuff I saw on my brief tour were pretty hokey. Like we need another zombie survival guide – boring!

I found this very entertaining Kickstarter campaign that illustrates my point about wondering why a book even needs funding. I only watched the first minute or so. A few observations. Presentation. If anyone out there ever decides to do this, don’t do anything this guy does. If you claim to have a bookshelf stacked to above your head with fantasy books, you’re on camera, show me. Who cares if you have read the Mistborn books. Give me something impressive like The Worm Ouroboros or The Once and Future King, not what is currently the cool thing. You are trying to impress me as a writer and if you are going to mention your reading make sure it is something that would impress someone who would fund a writer (hint: probably another writer). If you were trying to impress in the science fiction genre I would not be impressed that you’ve read Ancillary Justice (even though I love that book). But if you bring up the Lensmen or Past Master, you might get some interest.

Especially if you appear to have just finished high school.

Why do you need help finishing it? What is the difference between the situation where most of it was written and now? How is money going to get the book to the end?

If I were making such a presentation, I wouldn’t do it in my bedroom. No, I would do it in my office, at my desk, with my book shelves towering over me. Everything would scream writer. I’d make damn sure my gargoyle was over one of my shoulders! A little scripting goes a long way.

But the most glaring thing for me was mentioning Mistborn. Don’t mention the book that inspired you as a teenager unless you are sufficiently far removed from your teenaged years.

As an example of a different (ain’t I supposed to be studying?) presentation, I really enjoyed this one. This person did a lot more homework. He even has photos as he is relating the origin of the story idea. Sadly, it doesn’t look like it is going to reach its funding goal. But that was definitely more on the mark for anyone considering such an avenue.



5 thoughts on “The World of Kickstarter

    1. Not a bad blueprint for one type of story (God, I wish I were writing right now!).

      Obviously one would have to realize that “3 days” is not really three days. Even not considering the planning and preparation stage (which can be any length) a novel written in three days is going to be 1. of a definite, short, length since there is only 72 hours in 3 days, 2. unedited, 3. first draft.

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