As a creator it can be intimidating, finding out that even after I've worked long and hard to get my work to it's final stage and ready for print that the creative stage was just the beginning! There is still quite a journey after post-production to get your product out to the masses and then to also keep it in the eye of interest and inquriy. I came across a group of creators who were a mere three days from trying to help many others like myself, like themselves who have been in this complicated position before. Amy Leigh Strickland and her crew have a very awesome kickstarter that has the potential to help out a great many people, specifically Independent publishers. Amy was gracious enough to take time out of her final sprint to the finish line with their kickstarter ,"The Indie Guide to Indie Publishing", to talk to us about the kickstarter and hopefully convince you future indie creator/publisher....no visionary to support their crowd funding campaign and take this book on the journey with you!
Hi Amy thanks for taking the time to speak with us. What's the kickstarter called and can you tell us about it?
It's called The Indie Guide to Indie Publishing, which is the title of the book we're trying to produce. We have nine authors working on a guide to help independent authors. Each person will be writing about their area of expertise. Each of the nine authors has an area of expertise and a few years of experience self-publishing. When we all started out, we had to patch together information from a number of sources. Now that self-publishing is taking off, there are a lot of charlatans out there who will offer to publish and sell your book for a hefty price, but they get paid in lump sum and it doesn't really matter to them if they sell ten copies or ten thousand. We want to give authors the tools and information they need to publish and sell their own book.
Who's idea was it and how did it come about?
It was my idea. Back in May I was at the Alabama Phoenix Festival on a panel about self-publishing, realizing just how many people wanted this information and how scattered it really was. I met Bobby Nash (who will be writing about booking cons and appearances) and Teal Haviland (who will write about how awards and accolades effect promotion and sales) at the event and a few weeks later I emailed a bunch of successful indies that I knew and asked them to help me make this book.
You've assembled a varied group of creators to author the book, can you tell us a bit about them?
Sure! Each of the nine people has an area that they really excel at. Carly Strickland, my sister-in-law, is a book designer and an illustrator. She is writing an article about how to find a cover artist and, if you absolutely must make your own, how to design a decent cover. She's also covering interior layouts and writing a bonus article about picture books.
Dave Wheeler is one of the creators of Windwave Comics. He's going to write about printing options, comparing the benefits of both Print on Demand and Small Press printing.
Blake Northcott is a wildly successful indie author working in the genre of superhero fiction. She just completed her second Kickstarter in 2013, raising over 400% of the funds needed to produce her book. She has 30k+ followers on Twitter and many more on other social networks. She'll be writing the article on Social Media Marketing.
Kiri Callaghan, whom you may know from Geek & Sundry Vlogs, is writing an article on producing an audio book. She just finished the audio book for Arena Mode by Blake Northcott.
Kyle Strickland, my husband, is the chief editor for Matter Deep Publishing. His article will be about editing and revision processes—an absolute must for indies.
JL Bryan is a popular fantasy and urban fantasy author. His series, Jenny Pox, is raved about in the YA blog-o-sphere and has hundreds of reviews on Amazon. He has been able to quit his job and work as a full-time author, so he's going to write an article on how to get people to review your book.
I've already mentioned what Teal and Bobby are going to be writing. Bobby travels to cons and events all over the south east and is frequently asked to be on all sorts of panels at events like Alabama Phoenix Festival and Dragon Con. Teal is new to self-publishing this year, but she did win the UtopYA 2013 Best Debut Novel award, which got her off to a great start.
And then there's me. I've been self-publishing with my family for three years now. I have five books out. I've sold thousands of copies of my Olympia Heights novels and run a successful Kickstarter for my mother-in-law's art book, The Incognito Project. Over the years I've networked with a large group of authors, and run all of the websites for Matter Deep Publishing. I have worked as a freelance web designer. My article will be about author sites—ways to build them, what to include, and how often you should update them.
Rewards wise. What are some of the notables if people pledge?
We have the basic rewards you would expect such as copies of the book in paperback and eBook. Our premium prizes are design services, which include cover art, creative critiques, interior layouts, Google Hangout consultations (you can hang out with Blake and ask for advice on your book, fellas!), and a Twitter signal boost. We also have a few rewards for non-writers who just want to help, including a discounted eBook bundle, posters, and bundles of books that will ship in time for Christmas.
We are down to the wire here, 3 days left to get this thing done! Is there a plan B?
I'm afraid this was Plan B. The last time we tried to fund this thing, my timing was terrible. Blake was AFK partying with Mark Millar at San Diego ComicCon, Kiri was in the middle of her drive to be accepted as a Geek & Sundry Vlogger, and people were away on summer vacation. This is a very niche product, but I need to pay the writers to make it worth their time. NaNoWriMo ends today, so we're hoping to catch a lot of backers who now have 50k words to make into something tangible. If we don't succeed this time, the project will probably get put in the vault for at least a year before we try it again. That's why we need people to jump now and pledge their support. If you're waiting to see it on Amazon, you may be too late. Help make this happen!
Well we wish you all luck. I know as a person who's been publishing independently as well as a fellow creator a book like this can only help. Thanks Amy!
Thanks for sharing out project!
You can check out Amy and friends at their kickstarter and hurry go now! Three days left! Don't hesitate! Why tempt fate?! Go!
I hope to see you all pledge friends until then, I am still...J.M. Hunter/Indy Hunter