You’ve probably heard of crowdfunding. Thought maybe it’s something you could try to help fund your next indie book project, or stimulate a current one. Well, I decided to test the waters, learning what I can as I go along, have fun and raise some capital, maybe end up with some tips and observations I can share with you while I’m at it.
Here’s a campaign I just started for a kid’s book I’m working on: The Boy Who Could Not Smile.
I took a look at the top 3 crowdfunding sites out there:
  1. Kickstarter
  2. Indiegogo
  3. GoFundMe
And that’s how they were ranked. Sorry, I don’t remember where I saw the ranking. My bad. Probably didn’t bother to make a mental note since of the 10 listed, those were the only three I knew of and saw around anyway.
They’re all very slick, each giving the impression of being established, well funded and heavily trafficked. Meaning, we (us and contributors) aren’t likely going to get screwed playing in those three playgrounds.
I decided to go with GoFundMe for my first crowdfunding foray. For a number of reasons, most notable being:
  • Both Kickstarter and Indiegogo look very business-oriented. Almost overkill for projects that are much smaller and simpler in scope and objectives.
  • With Kickstarter, if you don’t hit your target $$$, you don’t get any of the funds that you manage to raise. I think Indiegogo too, although I think I remember seeing some mention of you being able to get the funds, but with a penalty, not sure. With GoFundMe, however, there are no such restrictions. You can withdraw anything you’ve been lucky enough to raise, at pretty much anytime. No target goal deadlines either, unless you want one. The campaigns can be kept live and ongoing.
  • Going through the other campaigns on GoFundMe, the site’s general audience seems to be a better fit for my The Boy Who Could Not Smile project. This is probably the most important factor — if I had a different project that would be a better fit for the Kickstarter or Indiegogo communities, I’d be there instead.
  • Of the three, GoFundMe looks like it’ll be the easiest to get started and get going with.
I’ll keep you all updated on how things progress, and will share any tips and lessons I manage to learn along the way. Have a great weekend!