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We’re thrilled to announce today that $100 million has been pledged to Publishing projects on Kickstarter. Since we launched seven years ago, authors, publishers, book shops, poets, podcasters, and more have brought their creative projects to life with the generous support of the Kickstarter community.
Here’s a look at some more of the numbers behind this milestone:
Publishing Statistics (28 April 2009 — 10 August 2016)
- Amount pledged: $100,000,000
- Projects launched: 33,009
- Projects successfully funded: 9,660
- Creators who have launched more than one successfully funded Publishing project: 608
- Successfully funded creators who have backed at least one other project: 6,414
- Number of backers: 1,226,438
- Number of countries/territories those backers have come from: 211
- Number of times they have pledged to a project: 1,673,631
- Number of publishing projects supported by the backer who has pledged to more publishing projects than anyone else: 364
More than a million people from around the world have gotten behind over 30,000 Publishing projects on Kickstarter, helping nearly 10,000 of them come to life. This outpouring of support for the inspired ideas of creators committed to writing, storytelling, and culture is incredible. And the projects funded reflect the breadth and diversity of writers, readers, and storytellers around the world.
Here’s a breakdown of those projects by sub-category:
- Academic: 660 projects launched
- Anthologies: 231 projects launched
- Art Books: 2,103 projects launched
- Calendars: 198 projects launched
- Children's Books: 5,349 projects launched
- Fiction: 8,009 projects launched
- Literary Journals: 195 projects launched
- Nonfiction: 7,170 projects launched
- Periodicals: 1,129 projects launched
- Poetry: 1,189 projects launched
- Publishing: 5,020 projects launched
- Radio & Podcasts: 778 projects launched
- Translations: 116 projects launched
- Young Adult: 607 projects launched
- Zines: 255 projects launched
The Publishing Community on Kickstarter
Authors who have gotten their start on Kickstarter have gone on to lots of success and acclaim over the years — from debuting works on The New York Times Best Sellers list, and making NPR’s Annual list of Best Books, to winning Locus Awards, World Fantasy Awards, and being picked up by well-known publishers.
The Publishing category on Kickstarter showcases work that speaks directly to audiences, voices which are being overlooked by traditional publishers, and innovators finding success on their own terms. Several exciting themes have emerged over the years:
- Independent publishers are looking to Kickstarter to gauge interest, experiment, connect directly with readers, and create beautiful books with high production values. Examples include Restless Books’ expertly illustrated edition of Don Quixote, Copper Canyon Press’s edition of recently discovered, previously unpublished poems by internationally beloved poet, Pablo Neruda, and the gorgeous hardcover editions of John Crowley’s new translation of The Chemical Wedding, published by Kelly Link’s and Gavin Grant’s Small Beer Press.
- Traditional publishing wisdom says anthologies don’t sell, but on Kickstarter the anthology sub-category has the highest success rate in the Publishing category (65%), raising more than $1.2 million. Two great examples are Fresh Romance— a romance comics anthology, and Gigantic Worlds — an anthology of sci-fi flash fiction.
- Authors are launching projects on Kickstarter that later receive wider distribution through traditional publishers. Hello Ruby was picked up by MacMillan, Wollstonecraft by Random House Kids, and All Black Cats Are Not Alike by Chronicle.
- Children's Books have been a particularly bright spot. Titles like The Octicorn, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, Augie and the Green Knight, The Princess Who Saved Herself, and The Wonderful World of Creatures and Code have become part of bedtime routines at homes around the world.
- And books voicing perspectives often unheard in traditional publishing are being made, speaking to the Kickstarter community’s support for stories and storytellers representing a wider range of people and experiences. Long Hidden Anthology, Edge of Morning: Native Voices Speak for the Bears Ears, and Furqan’s First Flat Top are just three great examples.
The last seven years of publishing on Kickstarter have been awesome, but it’s just the first chapter. We are excited to see how authors, publishers, booksellers, librarians, podcasters, zinesters, and others will use Kickstarter to connect with audiences over the next seven years. (Maybe you’re one of them?)
In the meantime, if you’re in NYC tonight, we’re hosting a conversation on the creative process and the inspiring nature of New York City at the historic Strand Book Store, introduced by Kickstarter CEO Yancey Strickler, featuring Hamish Smyth and Jesse Reed of the NYC Transit Authority Graphics Standards Manual, Tim Reitzes of The New York Pizza Project, and Brian Foo of Continuous City. Come out and join us!
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