100 Stories is a 452 page book that contains a hundred experiences of cancer. This book is for anyone who is affected by cancer. Whether your loved one has just been diagnosed, or yourself.
1 in 2 of us will develop cancer in our lifetime. This includes my dad, who was diagnosed with 2 brain tumours when I was just three years old.
So like many people, cancer has played a big part in my life. Despite this, my dad has never been keen to talk about his illness. Whilst I admire his bravery, I believe that scary subjects, like cancer, need to be talked about openly. This is why I have created 100 stories.
What began as my graduate degree project at Central Saint Martins has become my attempt to normalise the cancer conversation by narrating other peoples stories.
What people have said so far...
"This revelatory, moving and ingeniously structured book will make readers think and become readier to talk about cancer, a subject that is, for many, still wrapped in silence. It is a book for anyone whose life has been affected by the disease directly or indirectly - a book, in other words, for everyone." - Kate Kellaway, The Observer Critic
"Helena’s project is an inspiring and lasting testament to everyone who has gone through a devastating cancer diagnosis and offers a powerful collection of stories and experiences. We are honoured to be part of this uniquely unifying project." - Sarah Lindsell, CEO of The Brain Tumour Charity
"I thought I was helping out a stranger for a university project, amazing what people achieve! Well done Helena and everyone who gave their time and energy to share, looking forward to reading the book and keeping the conversation going!" - Greer, story 74
"I can see 100 Stories helping many people who find themselves in a similar position to us. How do you start talking about a cancer diagnosis?" - Angela, story 75
More About '100 Stories'
The book was made with support from the charity Cancer On Board. Their founder James McNaught took inspiration from TFL’s Baby On Board badges, whilst he was going through treatment. Using their symbol, I created a portrait of each person involved, which is paired next to their story. I approached the contributors via social media and asked them to verbalise their cancer story. Each person talks about the impact of open discussion and the benefits of social media.
I need your help to self-publish my book. In order to make the book affordable, I have to print a minimum order quantity of 500 books. This is why I need to raise the large sum of £8,400 with all of the money going to printing and postage costs.
What will be inside the book?
Foreword written by James McNaught, founder of Cancer On Board
Introductions by Lucy Shaverin, Story Manager at Maggie's, and myself
100 portraits and stories
A list of suggested resources (which includes books, charities and blogs I found during my research)
A list of patrons
What are the print specifications for the book?
Size: 17 x 24cm, 3.5cm thick
Printed single colour (navy blue) 'offset' in the United Kingdom on uncoated paper by Ripping Image
Featuring Martino Sclavi
Martino's thoughts on the film I created: "Meeting Helena, as a young and excited director, was wonderful for me. For me, as a film producer with a big hole in my head, it’s often difficult to narrate effectively for interviews and conversations but our meeting had organised threw a new light on the brain tumours for us patients. Helena was very curious of my attitude for this ’strange’ reality I find myself in and as she pulled out her camera to interview me we began to talk about my positive attitude towards my new life with holes in my brain. Then, after a few months, she sent me her film and it truly blew me away. There is no question technically and emotionally about the creativity of her unique style of filming. I most definitely want to see much more."
- £5 A hand made bookmark
- £10 James' Story (a hand printed single story)
- £10 Martino's Story (a hand printed single story)
- £15 The '100 Stories' Book signed by Helena Traill - EARLY BIRD DEAL, ALL GONE
- £20 The '100 Stories' Book
- £25 Cancer On Board Signed Book (signed by James McNaught and Helena Traill)
- £100 A4 custom made portrait
- £250 Your name printed in the book!
- £500 100 Stories Bundle (with bonus: tour of The Houses of Parliament with James McNaught)
- £1,000 Super Supporter, including limited edition of the book - ALL GONE
- £22 Your own portrait on a T-shirt - BONUS REWARD
I am sticking to a tight deadline, so if I reach my target I will be able to ship the Early Bird Books at the beginning of December, and then continue with the rest of rewards!
This timeline shows the '100 Stories' book only, other rewards need to be hand made in the London Centre for Book Arts studio in Hackney. So those will ship by January/February 2020 (maybe before!).
How will I spend the money?
Due to printing costs I can only order a minimum run of 500 books, so all of the money raised during the kickstarter will go towards printing and shipping the book. So that means this project won't happen without your help! I need to fully fund my goal in order to go to print. Here is a rough idea of how my funding will be spent:
- £10,000 would mean I can have a book launch at The Maggie's Centre in West London. This will include live portrait making, live storytelling and live music! Every backer will be first in line to sign up for a free ticket!
- £12,500 would mean I can print more than 500 books - approximately 800! And then I can donate more copies to charities like Cancer On Board, The Brain Tumour Charity and Maggie's Centres (please let me know if there are any other charities out there who you think should have a copy or two).
None of the current proceeds will be going to charity. But because I am printing a minimum of 500 books (or more), any books not sold will be donated to a number of cancer charities.
I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in the project so far! To all the people who wrote a story and sent me their portrait and to Cancer On Board, The Maggie's Centre and The Brain Tumour Charity for their support.
If you can’t help the project financially please spread the word!
Follow along on social media via Twitter, Instagram and Facebook: @100StoriesBook
And last of all, thank YOU! Without you this won't be possible.
Risks and challenges
It is definitely going to be scary to click the 'Send to Print' button, as the book is 452 pages long. So to proof read and check for mistakes on every page is going to be a huge task! Then once I receive the books (I can't wait to see 500 books on my doorstep) I will need to fulfil the delivery in time. That is going to be difficult, because I am packaging and distributing everything myself. I will need to create a good workflow/factory set up and rope in family members!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (28 days)