Recently, someone posted a comment on Goodreads about our upcoming Ripple Effect series that made me incredibly uncomfortable. She mentioned that while she enjoys clean romances, she didn't appreciate the way we were going about marketing with a Kickstarter promotion or by soliciting friend reviews on Goodreads. I've given her frustrations a lot of thought and can definitely understand why she might think that, but at the same time, I'm feeling misunderstood and would like to share our perspective on everything, especially when it comes to Kickstarter.
The last thing any of us want to do is come across like we’re begging for money. When the idea of doing a Kickstarter was brought up, we all had reservations about going this route, but eventually made a collective decision to move forward, and here's why:
When it comes to releasing a professional book, it’s not cheap process. Not only do we authors invest a ton of time writing these stories, but we have to pay for things like cover design, editing, typesetting, marketing, etc. And because these are novellas, they will be priced low, which means an even lower royalty rate for us. We’re all entering into this project knowing we probably won’t make much money from it, and because of that, we'd love to be able to offset some of our initial costs. Kickstarter is such a great tool used by so many people in various professions (photographers, writers, artists, chefs, videographers, musicians, etc) for the purpose of raising funds to help with various projects that they feel strongly about but can't afford to do on their own.
The bottom line is this: All six of us authors don’t like how difficult it is to find clean, well written romances in the world today. It's frustrating how so many books contain sex and more sex, not to mention strong language. As a mother and person, I hate that and don't want to read books like that. I don't want those kinds of thoughts, images or words in my mind and definitely not in the minds of one of my children. Because of that, we'd like to keep contributing our small portion of fun and uplifting romances and this series is one of the ways we're trying to do that. But we also can’t afford to pour all this money and time into a project like this that we might not recoup.
That's where Kickstarter comes to play. We're hoping that there are others that feel as strongly about getting cleaner books out there as we do and wouldn't mind supporting our efforts. But at the same time, we don't want anyone to feel obligated in any way.
So, for those of you who are interested, if you would like to donate to our project (and get some free advanced copies of the books in return), wonderful. If you can't afford to donate but would still like to support us by posting about our project on your blog or FB or Twitter or wherever, we'd love that too. If you'd prefer not to do either, no worries--really! This project will come to fruition regardless of whether or not we raise the money. We feel that strongly about this series of books and the potential good it will do.
If you'd like to read more about this project, see what incentives we're offering, or find out how Kickstarter works, feel free to check it out by clicking on the picture below:
Now to address the solicitation of friend ratings on Goodreads. (This is turning out to be such a fun post. :))
Let me start by saying that we haven't solicited any friend reviews, or, at least I haven't (and I really don't think anyone else has either). This is the third book I’ve done a cover reveal for prior to releasing the book, and for whatever reason, I always get some random, unsolicited ratings from people I don't know. Most have been either been 1 or 5 stars. Right now, by book has one of each, giving me a lame average rating of 3.0--and that's BEFORE the book has even been released. I honestly can't explain why this phenomenon happens. Maybe people meant to add it to their "to read" list and accidentally hit the rating option. Maybe they don't care for my cover and blurb and have based the low rating on that. I really don't know. All I know is that it happens, and I'm sorry if people feel like we're soliciting friend reviews because of it.