Welcome (and welcome back to the returning backers) to the Kickstarter project for book 2 in the Guardians of the Herald story, The Templars' Return. For those of you who weren't with us for the successful book 1 project (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecavalier/angels-and-demons-guardians-of-the-herald-issues-1?ref=profile_created_last)
we took an ebook and successfully turned it into a real, physical, hold-in-your-hand book, along with some cool rewards too. If you want to see how that happened, follow the link to the completed project and have a look around, but make sure you come back here because we're going to do it again and you don't want to miss out on all the cool stuff.
What cool stuff you ask? Well, how about prints of cover art, autographs (yeah, I know I'm pretty psyched about getting mine too), hats, potentially challenge coins, never-before-seen art, and additional short stories you can only get through participation in the Kickstarter project. Okay, well you could buy the short stories after the project closes but the other stuff is exclusively available to those who participate here.
Why produce a print book for a story that's already out in ebook format (or free on the web)? Well, for starters, I love real books. Other people like real books too, and they buy them from book stores, so I have to have some books to provide to those stores. A second reason is that Kickstarter projects are fun and a neat way to do the extra stuff you can't get anywhere else. A third reason is that it is an amazing learning process to take a manuscript of ephemeral 1s and 0s and turn it into something real and tangible that you can hold in your hands. So, let's talk about what we're going to use the funds for...
ISBN-We have to purchase an ISBN for the book. This unique number allows a publisher (that's me) to own the book and do stuff with it, register it for things, put it in distribution pipelines, etc. You can't do those things without an ISBN you own.
Formatting-Yes, the book was formatted for distribution through Amazon's channels via the Kindle, but that formatting is VERY different from the formatting needed to appear as a print book. This formatting is time consuming in both effort and inspection.
Submission to the printer-Lightning Source/Ingram Spark is not a vanity press. They are the print on demand arm of Ingram Publishing, which is the printer a HUGE chunk of the publishers world wide use to print their books. These guys are professionals, and they expect their partners to be professionals too. To ensure they don't waste their time on amateurs there are costs associated with using their business model to get our books in print (who knew printing books wasn't free?). It costs an upfront fee to set up the title with Lightning Source, which gets us one up load of the manuscript, and one up-load of the cover art via their systems. Plus, if I screw up something and have to re-send either the manuscript or the art work (that NEVER happens....) they charge a fee again (which is why the formatting step is a time-consuming pain in the butt).
Galley copy-Once the innards and outards (yes John I know it isn't a real word but it's fun to say) of the book are uploaded a sample is printed as a single book and shipped out for review. This step is absolutely required so that you guys don't get horridly screwed up books, but it also is not cheap given they are firing up their presses to print one, single book.
Purchase of 100 books-This is the whole point of the project, so we should actually, you know, print some books. Plus, these are required for the fulfillment step of the successfully funded project because you guys like real books too, so I should probably send you one or two autographed copies (depending on participation level of course).
Creation of cool rewards-Well, art doesn't print itself and challenge coins don't get minted off my good looks (yeah, I was shocked too honestly). The fine folks who produce these nifty items want to get paid for their efforts, and frankly they should.
Postage-The United States Postal Service is an amazing institution given what it does, and their fees for that same service are honestly not that expensive if you think about what really goes on in getting an envelope for that little box in front of my house to that little box in front of yours. The Post Office gets a bad rap and they shouldn't. So, we need to pay them to move all this cool stuff from me to you.
Effort and convenience-Well, yes, honestly, my effort and your convenience. This story is already out there in ebook format and posted on my website. It took some effort to get it there to be sure (and I'd like to thank my editor John St.Clair, who corrects my abominable mechanics regularly) and if you just want to read the story for free you can do so on the website. However, if you want to read it in a more convenient format, like an ebook or a real book, that has a small price tag attached to it.
Where do we go from here? Well, you can go to the right and find the reward level at which you'd like to participate, ranging from just getting a copy of the book all the way to being a saint in support of my writing. Or, you could check out the stretch goals below first and THEN go select a reward level to help us meet those goals and unlock even more stuff...
$1000 - A new short story of no less than 3000 words distributed to everyone from the $5 level and higher. The topic of this short story will be determined through an online poll taken from the author's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/firstchevalierbook
$2500 A custom Guardians of the Herald challenge coin created AND a second short story of no less than 3000 words for all participants from the $10 level and higher.
$4000 new custom original art commissioned specifically for The Templars' Return printed at no less than 8x10 inches AND a third short story of no less than 3000 words for everyone from the $25 level and higher.
Here's the Story Blurb...
Billy Ransom continues to grapple with the idea that Angels and Demons are real as he works with the top secret Guardian program to protect his country. While searching for the terrorist Robert Dante, the Guardians discover he can completely disappear off the face of the Earth and no one can figure out how he does the impossible. No one, that is, until two Frenchmen arrive claiming to be friends, but knowing far too much about the Ether, Billy, and even the existence of the Guardians' hidden base. Billy must find Robert Dante before he can kill again, protect those he cares about, and sort out friend from foe or his may be the next soul lost in the ongoing battle between Heaven and Hell.
Risks and challenges
Well, we've done one of these now so a large portion of the learning curve has been met thanks to those who helped make Book 1 a reality. However, now we get to see how much of that learning stuck from a year ago. I'm confident that funding at the level chosen will be sufficient to take care of getting the book transformed from ebook to real book. Once again, a large part of the formatting has been managed getting the manuscript ready for ebook format, but we still have to massage that into a print format. The cover is again the lion's share of the risk. However, having done that once those lessons were easily learned and should not cause us grief or heartache. On the whole I think the risks are minimal given the success of the first book. We should be ready to go in short order after funding.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)