To Kickstart or not to Kickstart? That is my question

Friends, I have been working feverishly on my two books coming out next month: the 2nd edition of my comic thriller, Ain’t That America, and the first publication of my science fiction novel, The Act. Both worthy projects, of course, and both deserving of your custom when they are published. But there is another project upcoming, and I think I need your help with it.

You may remember that in this blog a week or two back, I plugged the Kickstarter project for The Walker Stalker Con, an all-things-zombie convention that will rise in Atlanta the first week of November. (You may remember me getting all frothy at the mouth over the fact that Judith O’Dea will be there.) I helped them get over their fund-raising goal, which in turn meant that I was going to be invited out to give some of my awesome “zombies in society” talks at the Con.

Well, shit happens. And it happens specifically that although they did make their fund-raising goal, they’re still not the most flush organization, and a plane ticket to come out and speak looks like it is, sadly, beyond their means. They broke no promises — I want to help zombie promotion organizations, and the Walker Stalker podcast is one of the best. They were more saying that they couldn’t do it if they didn’t make their goal, not that they could necessarily do it even if they did. Seriously, it’s all cool.

In fact, their frugality is actually kind of a good sign for the Con, because all of the money is going to make it fantabulous for all zombie lovers, and it’s not being spent on plane tickets for (admittedly awesome) zombie experts such as myself.

That said, I am still invited to speak and I still want to go make some magic at the three-day Con. I want to sell my books there — in fact, I will have my first actual ZOMBIE BOOK unveiling at Walker Stalker Con 2013. It will be called Reviva Las Vegas! and will feature four interlocking novellas about zombies in Sin City:

  • “Pawn of the Dead,” which shows how an unwitting group of Las Vegas reality TV show pawn shop workers unleash the Zombocalypse;
  • “Hoover Damned,” a story following a group of Vegas ne’er-do-wells as they try to save the city they call home from the rising dead;
  • “Dead Man’s Hand,” the story of a post-zombocalyptic drifter gambler who has to play a “sudden undeath” game of poker if he wants to leave Vegas alive; and
  • The title story, “Reviva Las Vegas!”, in which Sin City stages its last stand against the undead.

In addition to all this goodness, there will also be an extra section in the back with a transcript of all of my “Zombies! The Living Dead in Literature, Film, and Culture” lectures on iTunes U. This is the only place where these will be available in print form!

So you’re no doubt thinking, “Heck, Hoade, I’ll take one!” and while I appreciate that enthusiasm, hear me out for the rest of this. You’ll be glad you did, methinks.

This book, chock full of the zombie goodness you know and love, will be unveiled at the Walker Stalker Con in November. That is, if I can make it there, get a table to sell them, and so on. (You see where this is going. I’m thinking a Kickstarter project in order to raise said funds.) I have calculated the approximate costs thusly:

  • Round-trip flight to Atlanta (or vicinity): $400
  • “Artist’s table” at Walker Stalker Con: $300
  • Lodging for 4 nights at hotel holding the Con: $500
  • Meals for 4 days (3 at Con + 2 half-days of travel): $150
  • Production costs for books to sell at Con: $400 to $600
  • Miscellaneous: $150
  • WAY approximate total: $2,100

These estimates are kind of off the top of my head, based on other Cons I’ve had experience with. So you might be thinking, “Heck, Hoade” — that’s kind of a verbal tic you have — “why the hell should anybody support you to go make money off your own dang books? GET A JOB, HIPPIE!”

Okay, that’s harsh, but you’re a little emotional right now. I understand. But this is where the incredible bonus rewards come in. I’m thinking of setting up a Kickstarter of $2000, with the following irresistible awesomesauceome kickbacks for different levels of support:

  • Up to $24.99: An ebook copy of Reviva Las Vegas!
  • $25 to $49.99: An ebook copy and a signed hard copy of Reviva Las Vegas!
  • $50 to $74.99: The ebook, the signed hard copy, and you will be thanked by name in Reviva Las Vegas!
  • $75 to $99.99: The ebook, the signed hard copy, the thanking by name, and a character in Reviva Las Vegas! will be named after you (or given a name of your choice).
  • $100+: All of the above, plus ebook and signed copies of all of my books — the novels Ain’t That America and The Act as mentioned above, and also the literary historical novel Darwin’s Dreams and my crazy-ass collection of short stories, Inappropriate Behavior!
  • Any level of support: My sincere gratitude, OBVIOUSLY.

NOW HOW MUCH WOULD YOU … wait, sorry, wrong sales pitch.

With these kinds of incentives and the sheer amazingness of the project, do you think it is worth pursuing as a Kickstarter? Right now I plan to do it, but if everybody thinks it’s a damned bollocks of an idea, I could reconsider. So please share your thoughts — no obligation will be implied or assumed by your adding your opinion.

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12 thoughts on “To Kickstart or not to Kickstart? That is my question

  1. So… what? You’re off the grid? I get on Hizzoner all the time when he lets his blog go silent for weeks at a time. Doesn’t work, but I try.

  2. You mean to say there exists more than one zombie con? Really? What is that, anyway? Here I thought everybody was all vampires and werewolves. I’m quite obviously out of the loop. For what it’s worth, I think you have a very wise spouse.

  3. I’m of two minds about this, after last night’s conversation. I see Kickstarter as an online form of begging on the street corner. That said, I’ve noticed some pretty outlandish things listed as Kickstarter material, so why not this? There’s lots of money out there, just sitting around waiting to be donated/spent on a worthy cause. If you really want to go, and if this is the only way you can do it, then have at it and best of luck.

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