LITERARY WORLD SUPERHEROES UNITE!
Who, you ask, are the literary world superheroes?
Why, YOU, of course!
What? How can that be?
Well, let me explain. Some say authors are an endangered species who have been forced to navigate some pretty choppy waters. Not only have they fled in masses from the traditional publishing industry to “do their own thing” or to be hybrid authors with a foot in each world, but then there is also the rumor that if scammers don’t kill the industry first, AI will render them useless.
Nooo!!! Say it ain’t so.
(See me shaking my head and shrugging.)
I don’t know. I have always believed that life makes a way, that when one door closes, another opens. Of course, that door might be a window or…as is often the case for me…a hole in the wall hidden behind a tarp. In any case, when things start to go south, I tend to start turning shit over, looking for that hole in the wall.
But you can pretty much count on the fact that there is little protection for the average author under the wings of the big publishing companies. As competition gets fiercer, they do too. They are not charity organizations; they are in business to make money. And to do that, they will dictate changes to your stories, dictate topics that will and will not get published, dictate prices and formats and every other little thing that feeds into their bottom line. That is how they stay in business.
And who does that affect? Not just authors—it affects YOU too! Because it changes the stories we write for you, it eliminates stories you will never know you needed to read, and it sometimes frustrates authors to the point of driving them into other professions.
Who loses? Everyone!
But wait, before you scoff at the idea of authors in need of rescue, let me remind you that while there are many authors making a bundle selling books, there are others who are actually paying people to read their books with the cost of giveaways and advertising, on top of slow sales. In 2022, the median writing and self-publishing revenue was $12,749. For a full-time job, that works out to somewhere around half of minimum wage in some states. When you consider that there are authors in that bucket who are making millions per year, that means there are a whole lot of authors on the other side of that $12K median point!
Also, while there are a number of publishing platforms that allow authors to upload their books for free, it ain’t free to produce and sell a book. Not by a long shot. Remember, there is the time invested in writing, editing, formatting, cover creation, uploading, promoting, determining market positioning and pricing, and if there is anything left over at the end of the month, there is the cost of advertising. Then, after the book is sold, there are more costs, such as the middleman’s cut, the delivery and shipping costs, packaging costs, and taxes for every stinking taxing authority imaginable. And don’t even get me started on the cost of all of the tools an author has to invest in, such as word processing, text formatting, graphics creation, mailing list support, royalty reporting, sales reporting, free download portals…and so, so many more.
It ain’t cheap…not if you’re going to do it justice.Hence, the push toward new options like Kickstarter which, in my opinion, is a platform where the weird and wonderful collide, where a potato salad or a lighted camp stool can grab the limelight, and where authors are now seeking refuge from the ever-elusive publishing fairy godmother—who I sometimes refer to as “the bitch with the wand.” (I think she might be related to Karma.)
So, what makes you a Literary World Superhero? Your ability to kick the ass of the bitch with the wand, that’s what! Your reading and spending habits, your determination to support authors you enjoy, your commitment to making sure you obtain your reading materials legally…and these days…your willingness to explore new avenues for supporting your favorite authors directly.
So…that pretty much makes authors the endangered species you never knew you needed. And now those elusive creatures are beginning to turn to Kickstarter—not only for their survival in the wild, but also to defend their right to write the stories in their hearts, and your right to read what you love.
But what's in it for you aside from all the stories you can read?
VIP Access to the Bookish Binge Party. Imagine sipping your tea and reading that hot-off-the-press novel while the masses are still stuck in "pre-order" purgatory. Backing a Kickstarter campaign means you get early access to the literary goodies. Talk about a bookworm's version of Netflix and hot cocoa!
Behind-the-Scenes Drama. Forget reality TV. Get your backstage pass to the creative process. Expect updates, sneak peeks, and glimpses into the author's wild writerly journey. Will there be tears? Drama? Writer's block-induced meltdowns? Tune in to find out.
Collector's Edition Goodies. Those signed copies, limited-edition covers, and custom artwork—in other words, the good shit.
You're Not Just a Reader, You're a Co-Creator. Backing an author's Kickstarter campaign sometimes comes with the power to influence the story, cover design, and more…sometimes they will even give you a walk-on part! And…don’t forget that your backing sometimes allows them to create the weird and wonderful.
Swag Galore. Shot glasses, flasks, bookmarks, artwork, and other book-related swag—things to let you flaunt your indulgence like a boss!
Joining the Literary Illuminati. Become part of an exclusive club. You're supporting emerging voices, shaping the future of storytelling, finding new talent, and encouraging risk-taking. Who needs secret handshakes, anyway?
Fueling Your Book Addiction Guilt-Free. Got an addiction? An insatiable craving for books? It’s all-out gratification without any of the guilt—you're investing in literary artistry.
Keeping Karma From the Door. Lastly, there's the warm, fuzzies of earning karma points. Who knows where helping an author to survive in the wild can lead? Will you be the one to put the next bestseller over the hurdle, or to launch the next big-name author?
So, there you have it…Kickstarter isn't just a platform for quirky projects; it's your ticket to a world of literary extravagance, where you can support authors, wallow in your bookish obsessions, and revel in the delightful chaos of it all. Now, go back a few campaigns. It doesn’t matter if you back them for a thousand dollars or a buck…it all helps—and it is all APPRECIATED.
Now go put on your cape and bask in the glory of being a literary superhero. YOU ARE THE BOMB!
And here is the link to start with. 😊 Just sayin… (What? You knew I’d get there eventually.)
Well, that’s my story, unvarnished and unexaggerated, and I’m stickin’ to it. Hang on tight now ‘cuz we’re runnin’ this puppy for the finish line—we got less than 7 days to kick the ass of the bitch with the wand!
Bring it on!
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