7 Ways to Fund your Writing
by Hazel Longuet
The image of a struggling artist starving in their cold, gloomy garret as they agonize over their creative masterpiece is familiar to all of us; although I haven’t seen many real estate agents advertising dark, cramped garrets recently - not certain where a writer would go to find one. Still we all understand the pressures of trying to make a living and follow our dreams of writing.
Things may just have got easier….
There are now a number of social/crowd funding options available for all creative types. The basic premise of these sites is that you market your project (be it a book, a film, a graphic novel etc.)and you provide rewards for your backers. These rewards are at your discretion but obviously need to be attractive enough to encourage people to invest their hard-earned cash. Some sites charge a small percentage of the raised funds to cover their own handling and admin fee’s - so it’s definitely worth investigating which site suits you.
1. Kickstarter - http://kck.st/17KNXYr
The best known crowd funding site and the one with the strongest punch. This site works on the principal of “all or nothing”. You set an amount you wish to raise and if you achieve that goal you keep all the money plus any over funding but if you don’t achieve the funding goal you get nothing (except the possible exposure of your project amongst the Kickstarter community.
2. Sponsume - http://bit.ly/10cGl20
Sponsume have an open plan that enables you to set your target amount and if you reach it they charge you 4% of the amount you raise if you fail to meet the target then you are charged 9%.
3. Indiegogo - http://bit.ly/10cI5sf
Indiegogo is the only site I found that had two plans:
Fixed: You set your target amount if you reach it you obtain the funding but if your fund raising is short of the target you receive nothing. If the funding exercise is successful 4% of the final amount is charged by indiegogo.
Flexible: Allows you to obtain all the money you raise whether you reach your target amount or not. It charges 4% of the raised funds if you reach your target and 9% if you don’t.
Both plans charge an additional 3% transaction fees on credit cards however Paypal charges may differ.
4. Unbound - http://bit.ly/10cIxXi
This is different to all the other sites as it only covers writing and it seems to be more of a popularity contest (although not terribly clearly demonstrated on the site). It seems that crowds do in fact fund the publishing of the books which are then published by Unbound. The site also hosts an online book store for all the books published via the Unbound site.
5. Pozible - http://bit.ly/10cIYRw
Based on the “all or nothing” model - you set your target funding requirements and funding duration (up to 60 days) and then if you reach or exceed your target amount you are paid the money however if you fail to meet your target you will not obtain any funding.
Service fee’s are 4-5% of the successful funding amount plus card transaction fees of 2.4% + 30 Australian cents for Australian cards and 3.4% +3- Australian cents for all other cards. Paypal charges may differ.
6. RocketHub - http://bit.ly/10cJDlT
RocketHub allows you to keep all of the funds you raise whether you reach a target or not however their charges differ depending on your success or failure in meeting your target amount. If you are successful they charge 4% of raised amount + 4% credit card handling fees. If however you do not meet your target that figures rises to 8% of raised amount + 4% credit card handling fees
….. and finally for the more youthful among our midst here’s one for the kids:
7. PiggyBackr - http://bit.ly/10AdzCQ
Piggybackr focuses on the youth market and provides an environment for teams to utilise their social networks to obtain funding. The team leader needs to be above 13 but the team members can be under 13 - if they have parental approval.
The site doesn’t charge any set up fees but does take a flat percentage of 5% and $0.30 transaction fee per donation received.
Now I must add here that I have not used any of these sites so I can’t personally vouch for them and that the charges shown were correct at date of writing.
Illustration from author’s Zazzle product range available here http://bit.ly/143UuBn
Article also posted here: http://www.makealivingwriting.com/2013/07/05/first-friday-link-party-for-writers-4th-of-july/