Alternative Ways to Crowdfund Your Book
Many tools, technologies, and services companies say they help you create and sell your ebooks and print books, but only a select few get the “Self-Pub Boot Camp Approved” stamp. Here are three ways to get money for your book before it’s finished, two of which you probably haven’t heard of yet. All of them allow buyers various price points.
- Pubslush, Kickstarter, or Indiegogo? Which platform should a penniless author turn to? To explore the pros and cons of each platform, I interviewed a successful author from each to find out why they chose it and how they succeeded. Indiegogo was the first, Kickstarter is probably the biggest name, but PubSlush specializes in authors and books. There are pros and cons to each. Read my article on PBS MediaShift.
- Leanpub is both a publishing tool and a sales tool for in-progress and serialized ebooks. You can export your book to PDF, EPUB, and Kindle formats, then sell it via their online store. But here’s what makes it great for crowdfunding purposes – you get money for your book while you’re writing it! (Later you might also use one of the more popular crowdfunding platforms to raise funds for book production.) When you update your book, notify your readers via the LeanPub interface with a link to the latest version or the newest chapter in the series. Set minimum and suggested prices for your books and readers can pay what they want using sliders. Leanpub’s commission is 10% minus 50¢ per sale.
- Gumroad is an online store and community with a new feature that lets fans pre-order your product. Like crowdfunding platforms, buyer’s cards are charged on the release date. Then your product becomes a regular Gumroad listing. If you already have a book, simply upload and sell your digital files – up to 4 GB – or create an order form for selling the print edition. Social sharing is strong with an automatic feature that lets your buyers share their purchase with their Twitter and Facebook networks. Set a price or let the customer choose with pay-what-you-want pricing. You get customer data and 95% royalty minus a 25¢ transaction free.