Case in point, though: one of my newest friends, David List, is currently Kickstarting a fantasy novel called A Sawmill's Hope. This is currently blowing my mind.
|He had me at "fishmen."|
(image (c) David List and Tracy Flynn)
But see, those guys are are Big-Five multipublished authors, who already have a slew of books out on the shelves. For our man David, A Sawmill's Hope is his brand-spanking-new debut. He doesn't have 900 professionally-published pages worth of reputation to ramp up on. He doesn't have a big established fanbase to rev up for this project. That dude is running on passion, guts, and passion. And guts. So like... I guess sort of a whole 80's action movie parfait, minus the obligatory power ballad.
That is pretty amazing to me, because Kickstarter takes the traditional self-publishing model and does a total 180. Instead of putting your book up on Amazon and then spending years convincing people to buy it, you ask for their money up front, and have only Xty-two DAYS to convince them to ante up. If the funding goal doesn't make, all of your backers' pledges poof into the ether, and you got nothing.
|I believe my chosen analogy is an accurate one.|
So how do you sell people on a book they can't buy yet, written by an author they've never read? (Full confession: this particular topic is of keen interest to yours truly. I'm sure I don't know why.)
Well, so far David's taking a multimedia tack. He's got the sample chapter and cover design up there, of course, but he's also got art, music, and the video too. And - like the sand-phallus's tasteful, appropriate counterpart, this never would have occurred to me - he's giving out a secret backstory tidbit to all his backers, every time the funding hits another 10% mark. Won't spoil the ones he's given out so far, but I will say this: it is really cool to hear about how his growing up in a granite-mining town, with all of the associated miners' hazards and diseases, has influenced the way magic works in his world. Totally encourage you guys to give it a look-see, if you're looking to tromp through a fresh corner of Fantasyland!
|(c) David List|
Bigger question for you-all in the meantime: what other tidbits or extras make a project like this one stand out to you? Are there any Kickstartings or other indie drives that you're especially stoked about?
It was dumping rain, churning leaves like an unending applause.