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Swift Kick to the Head


You are an aspiring creative person and perhaps, like many folks, have a wealth of ideas and dearth of dollars.

Toiling away on your opus with dreams of sharing this masterwork with the world, reality set in: you are flat broke.

How broke?

You inspired Merriam Webster to include the term starving artist in their first edition.
Friends have asked you to stop scouring couch cushions for change.
You’re penning a ramen noodle cookbook.

You need a kickstart or Kickstarter.

Not familiar with this start-up?

Swift Kick to the Head 1 Book 300x198

Sero Paperback

  • Your idea needs funding
  • Post your project, funding goal and deadline
  • Supporters contribute as little as much as they want to help reach your goal
  • Project reaches the goal, supporter credit cards are charged
  • The caveat: if the money raised falls short of the goal, no one is charged
    More info here

Why are we talking about this? 

In 2013, 3 million people pledged $480 million dollars to Kickstarter projects.

Katherine Dove, author and recent Cushing client, was one. She used the rapidly growing site to raise money to get her book printed.

While we’re highlighting the benefits of this crowdsourcing darling, their own kick to the head reminds us we all still need to be very careful no matter where we share our personal information online.

OK, PSA over – back to how this platform played a role in the publication of this book.

A writer her entire life, Dove answered some questions about her experience using Kickstarter, her book, words of encouragement and a little about her Cushing experience.

How did you come across Kickstarter?

I heard about Kickstarter from several different people in my personal life and around school before I looked into it. My editor and I researched several different crowdfunding platforms before deciding on Kickstarter, mostly because of its reputation.

How did you hear about Cushing?

Printing was more of a shot in the dark. I relied on Google to find places around Chicago since I didn’t trust an online service.  I didn’t know where to go or what to expect so I asked for quotes from probably a dozen printing services and compared.

How did you ultimately decide Cushing was the right company for your organization?

The personal phone call from Maht put Cushing at the top of the list. The personal touch showed me right away that Cushing was a dedicated and professional service. If someone would call me just to verify my quote parameters, I knew I could trust them to print quality final products and that line of communication would prevent silly mistakes.

How did you feel about the outcome of your product and/or services?

I’m ecstatic about the books and the posters. When I started to think about self-publishing my first concern was “what if they look self-published?” I was worried I wouldn’t be able to make a product that looked “real” or “professional” enough to take off. With the books from Cushing I’m pretty sure I could convince someone I bought them at Barnes and Noble.

Swift Kick to the Head 2 Future Kickstarter Project Cushing

Cushing Kiddie Cubicle Art – the next big Kickstarter Project?

After two dozen rejection letters from publishing houses and agents, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I wasn’t going to leave my life’s dream in the hands of industry professionals I’d never met. There has always been interest from my target audience, so I put it in their hands instead.

How long have you been writing for?

I don’t remember ever not writing, but I didn’t start to take myself seriously until eight or nine years ago. My family moved from our long-time home and until I made new friends I found myself sitting for hours a day in front of the computer writing short stories and the beginnings of Sero.

Could you provide a quick synopsis of Sero?

Sero is about what would happen if a new “mythical” species emerged in the present day. Fairies, mermaids, werewolves, and the like still exist in hiding from humans, so how do they react to a new species? How do humans react? How do the members of this new species deal with the loss of their humanity?

The new species is named “Sero” which means “late” to reflect their delayed emergence as a species. They’re born human, but with a little help they sprout wings and discover an array of other “supernatural” abilities. Flying and throwing fireballs might sound fun at first, but wings are heavy and hidden costs are everywhere.

The main character is a short-tempered redhead named Roxy Hayes. She finds some aspects easier to accept than others. Separation from her family and friends “for her safety” is met with much kicking and screaming, but fighting a dragon with her newfound powers is met head-on.

What inspired you to write this book?

I wanted to write a world into existence where your worth isn’t defined by the strength of your flesh. A world where your strength only fails where you believe it does. Where you’re as powerful as you have the will to be… and where the whole world can see that fire.

Do you have other projects lined up?

The sequel to Sero is currently in the works. I have a few other small projects cooking, but Sero has a tendency to eat everything else, so I’ll probably finish the series before I try to write anything else.

Any advice for aspiring writers, artists, painters etc. etc. who are contemplating using Kickstarter?

Do it.

Know what you want, know what it will cost, and spam every social media site you can access. Look at successful Kickstarter campaigns and steal their marketing ideas. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t cost anything so make adjustments and try it again.

Do not give up.

Super Amazing Cat Calendar - Real Project Funded on Kickstarter

Have you used Kickstarter to fund a project? We want to hear from you.  Leave your comments below – or contact us to discuss how it came to be – perhaps you’ll see it in the digital pages of the Cushing blog!

Jon Davis

Jon Davis is Cushing’s Marketing Manager. From blogging to online communications, Jon writes about client developments, environmental branding, and much more. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

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