Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
A technothriller in the Michael Crichton vein. Terrorists attempting an attack bigger than 9/11.
Now available on Amazon (including the Kindle Lending Library)
Now available on Amazon (including the Kindle Lending Library)
228 backers pledged £1,806 to help bring this project to life.

About

11/9: a technothriller novel (Staff Pick) project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

11/9: a technothriller novel (Staff Pick)

£1,806

228

Hi, I'm Ben Lovejoy, technology writer by day, novelist by night.

On the tech journalism side, I started my career on PC World, the best-selling title of its day, and have written for dozens of computer and technology magazines, as well as numerous national newspapers, business and in-flight magazines. These days, I write mostly for the web (you may know me as EU Editor of 9to5Mac and 9to5Google).

11/9 is a fast-paced technothriller about terrorists attempting an attack bigger than 9/11. Here's the back cover blurb:

And here's how the novel opens:

The moment had arrived: in a little over two minutes, around half a million people would die.

Julian Fox was sitting in his car in the queue to board a ferry to Calais because in two minutes' time, air travel would cease to be an option. It would likely be months, perhaps years, before airliners would resume flying. Those that were left. 

He connected his laptop to the wifi hotspot created by a smartphone. In the boot of the car was a second laptop, and in his pocket two further smartphones, each on a different network: nothing was being left to chance.

Fox typed from memory the IP address of an encrypted web-server hosted on a PC sitting alone in a serviced office they'd rented close to London's Heathrow Airport. When connected, the secure webpage prompted him with four input fields, labelled with nothing more illuminating than the numbers one to four, and a Submit button.

The first two fields required a username and complex password. Fox entered both from memory. The third field required a code generated by Google Authenticator using a QR code he’d destroyed immediately after use. The final one needed him to enter digits from the current date and time in GMT.

He entered each in turn and clicked Submit. The screen refreshed. The word Ready appeared, and below it a button: Activate. It felt almost too mundane that the final step, the activation of the devices, would be triggered by something as ordinary as clicking a button on a webpage in the browser of a perfectly standard laptop.

A combination of ebooks and print-on-demand has revolutionised the publishing industry. Today, anyone can be a publisher. That's the good news.

The bad news, as anyone who has tried it will know, is that the commercial reality is a little different. Sure, anyone can put a book up for sale, but without promotion nobody will ever know that it exists. And promotion costs money.

This Kickstarter campaign has both short-term and medium-term goals ...

The immediate aim is to give 11/9 a decent shot at success. I've set a modest initial goal for the campaign of just £1000 ($1500). That would pay for enough marketing and PR to enable the novel to poke its head above the sea of new books out there. Not very far above, admittedly, but enough to make a difference.

What would that pay for? A mix of sites that offer promotions direct to readers, and paid-for review sites (note that these only guarantee your book will be reviewed, they don't guarantee a good review).

Promo services range from $100 for companies like Booksends to four-figure sums for companies like BookBub.

For reviews, there are people like Kate Tilton who will email a whole bunch of book bloggers for $100, through to Kirkus Reviews which charges $425 for a single review (and an extra $299 for 'Pro Connect' listing).

The exact mix I choose will depend, obviously, on the amount raised by the Kickstarter.

I have a second technothriller, written and edited, ready to roll out next. Backers will be the first to hear about that.

But I'm hoping to do more than publish my own work. Sure, any reasonably techy person can do the work needed to create and market their own book, but not everyone wants to.

The current alternative is to try to get a book deal with a traditional publisher, which – even if you succeed – sees the publisher get far bigger share of the proceeds than the author.

So I'd like to create a new type of publishing company. One that offers a fair profit-share with its authors. What do I mean by fair? A 50/50 split, where author and publisher share equally in the rewards.

I'm not expecting to become Penguin Books. This will be a part-time enterprise. But it would be great to play at least a small role in helping independent authors get a better deal, recognising that the writing is what readers are paying for, and that writers deserve a deal which reflects that fact.

There are a very few 'fair-trade' small-presses out there, leading the charge. Ghostwood Books is one such, and they have been kind enough to offer me a great deal of invaluable advice. But by their very nature, each can only publish a small number of books a year. We need more, I hope to become one.

There are rather more reward options than I'd initially planned! I wanted to keep it simple, but decided it was more important to offer the opportunity to back the project at any level – from £1 ($1.50) up.

Shipping is a killer for paperbacks, especially international shipping, so I decided it made sense at this stage to limit physical book rewards to limited-edition signed copies. If the campaign were to really take off, I have options for both up-front print-runs and more cost-effective international shipping, but I'm not confident of being able to offer this from day one, and didn't want to promise anything I may not be able to deliver.

I'm stating June for all paperback rewards to be safe, but I'm hoping to deliver in late May.

Oh, and if you decide to choose the Name in lights + Postcard option, I thought it would make a nice touch for the postcard to be a photo I took myself, so this is the image you'll get:

I fiercely believe you should be free to use your digital content on whatever devices you like. 

For this reason, ebook backers will receive the book in all four digital formats: iBooks (EPUB), Kindle (MOBI), Nook (EPUB variant) and PDF, free from DRM. Put the book on one device, or put it on every device you own, it's up to you (bonus points for uploading it to your fridge).

Sure, making it DRM-free opens up the risk of piracy, but you're all terribly nice people and I choose to trust you.

You've read this far! Thanks – I truly appreciate your interest. I hope you'll choose to back the project, even if just to offer a virtual high-five.

Risks and challenges

The novel is written, edited and formatted. The ebook files are ready. The paperback file is setup in a print-on-demand system, ready for me to press the button (or commission an upfront print-run in the best of cases). The sum raised will be applied first to meeting the costs of the rewards. There are therefore no risks beyond me walking in front of a bus before I deliver; I'll try not to do that.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.48

    VIRTUAL HIGH-FIVE. A small way for you to add your encouragement to the project.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    1 backer
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £3 or more About $4

    SUPER EARLY-BIRD EBOOK. Super early-bird pricing on a pre-publication copy of the ebook, supplied to you in iBooks, Kindle, Nook and PDF formats.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 25 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £4 or more About $6

    EARLY-BIRD EBOOK. Early-bird pricing on a pre-publication copy of the ebook, supplied to you in iBooks, Kindle, Nook and PDF formats.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 100 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £5 or more About $7

    EBOOK. A pre-publication copy of the ebook, supplied to you in iBooks, Kindle, Nook and PDF formats.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    59 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About $15

    SIGNED PAPERBACK (PERSONAL PICKUP). Personal pickup pricing on a pre-publication signed copy of the paperback. Please select this option only if you can collect from central London, England, on the evening of Thursday 28th May. Details of the location will be emailed to you. Shipping is NOT included or available for this option. If you need shipping, see other options below.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 12 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £15 or more About $22

    NAME IN LIGHTS. Pre-publication copy of the ebook supplied to you in iBooks, Kindle, Nook and PDF formats. Plus you get your name in lights (ok, pixels) on the Airbook Publishing website as a supporter.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 5 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $30

    NAME IN LIGHTS + POSTCARD. Pre-publication copy of the ebook supplied to you in iBooks, Kindle, Nook and PDF formats. Plus you get your name in lights (ok, pixels) on the Airbook Publishing website as a supporter, and receive a postcard from London thanking you for your support.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 4 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $44

    SIGNED PAPERBACK (UK). A pre-publication signed copy of the paperback with delivery to mainland UK addresses. Includes the ebook too, in all four formats. If you need delivery outside the UK, see options below. (eBooks will be delivered in April, paperback in June.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United Kingdom
    Limited 10 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £40 or more About $59

    SIGNED PAPERBACK (USA AND REST OF THE WORLD). A pre-publication signed copy of the paperback with delivery to anywhere in the world. Includes the ebook too, in all four formats. (eBooks will be delivered in April, paperback in June.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 8 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £75 or more About $111

    YOUR NAME IN THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS. Your name in the acknowledgements of the book. Plus a pre-publication signed copy of the paperback with delivery to anywhere in the world. Includes the ebook too (ebooks will be delivered in April, paperback in June.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Select this reward

    Pledge £100 or more About $148

    BAD PROOF COPY. One of five original proof copies of my first attempt at the paperback, four of which are available. The typeface is way too small, there's a typo on the first page (doh!), and it has a cover design I later rejected. You will get a signed copy of the final paperback too. The proof copy is overprinted inside the rear cover with the proof copy markings, and hand-numbered X of 5. Signed in the front also. Will naturally be worth a fortune when I'm a best-selling novelist <cough> ... Includes shipping anywhere in the world.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  12. Select this reward

    Pledge £150 or more About $222

    GOOD PROOF COPY. One of five original proof copies of the paperback, used to ensure I had the print setup correct. I'm retaining one, so there are just four of these available. It is overprinted inside the rear cover with the proof copy markings. Signed in the front also. Will naturally be worth a fortune when I'm a best-selling novelist ... Includes shipping anywhere in the world.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  13. Select this reward

    Pledge £250 or more About $371

    VIP PACKAGE. Your name in the acknowledgements and on the website. You and your guest meet the author and some fellow VIP backers in the exclusive members’ lounge on the 38th floor of the Gherkin, with stunning views of the capital. Take home with you your pre-publication signed copy of the paperback. Includes the ebook too. You’re responsible for the cost of any travel & accommodation necessary, so only choose this reward if you are in London or can get there on your own dime.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 0 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)