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Daunting Numbers.

So… I’ve been doing some more back-and-forth mailing with my editor at the publishing house, and somemore poking and prodding at numbers regarding the Kickstarter, and I can tell you – it’s daunting. Very, very daunting.

I would like to offer the book at a price that will end up being slightly lower than the final retails price, because I’d like to give backers the extra bit of “I got a good deal” feeling that I would want at a crowdfunding thing myself.

The problem with this is that it will involve a good deal of guesswork regarding the final price of the book – which can only be calculated finally once we have the finished manuscript, which needs to be translated first. Which is what I am going to run the Kickstarter for.

So there’s some guessing involved, and some insecurity because we’ll be dealing with currency change from Euro (the campaign will automatically run in Euro as I’m based in Germany) to British money, and the two are not fixed together regarding exchange rates. By now, I have run a lot of numbers, and I can already see that it will need a really, really huge number of backers if the margins are what I am currently expecting them to be. Too huge – it will look rather unrealistic, I’m afraid, so I will have to tweak and poke some more, and try to find a solution together with the publisher.

Things I’m currently planning to add, Kickstarter-exclusive, are signed (and possibly numbered) bookplates. Also possibly with some nice design on them. There will be Thank-you-postcards somewhere in the works. Most probably the majority of backers will just want the book, though, so I will really need to nail down things regarding its pricing.

Stay tuned – and keep your fingers crossed that we’ll be able to hit the target when guesstimating things!

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2 Responses to Daunting Numbers.

  1. Bruce says:

    OK, you’ve probably already considered this, but:

    Maybe you should split the project up into more parts, get a figure for the translation and markup/typesetting and offer the initial .pdf of that as a ‘reward’ – call it Part 1. Then have a second Kickstarter for getting the actual dead-tree version that does not need to kill electrons to read?

    I’d also stick with Kickstarter or a similar funding service that does not charge the donor until the actual goal has been met. A lot less trouble for you to try to refund money if, for some reason, the Kickstarter does not make the minimum goal.

    Several other ‘services’ are particularly associated with scammers who disappear with the funds even when the minimum goal is not met, and charge the potential donor as soon as they sign up.

    • Katrin says:

      Thank you for your input, Bruce!
      The current planning is to get just the translation and translation editing financed. The problem is that margins in book production and book sales are not very high, so the ratio between what you see as a figure and what actually ends up with me to fund the translation is not good – which means I’d have to set a ridiculously high minimum funding goal, which will decrease the chances of overall success.

      It looks like there is a way around, though, and I’m hoping it will work out – we can offer discount codes as rewards, so you as a backer will get the book for say, 20% off. That takes the cost of dead trees out of the equation and makes things much more realistic-looking.

      I will definitely stick with Kickstarter, as it’s the best-known portal and I have already backed things there. The other platforms seem to have similar charges, too, so there’s not much of a difference in that regard. And yes, minimum funding needs to be reached.

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