Daring to Kickstarter with Rachael Herron

Daring to Kickstarter with Rachael Herron

Episode 396: Inviting the people who want to support your work to do just that.

If you do not already know Rachael Herron, host of the Ink In Your Veins Podcast (formerly known as How Do You Write) and author of 13-ish novels (including 2 thrillers under the not-exactly pseudonym RH Herron), soon-to-be two memoirs and a few assorted books as well as many many blog posts and essays about writing… well you’re lucky because now you do.

The thing to know about Rachael Herron for today’s purposes is that she’s published her books both independently and with traditional publishers. She’s even retrieved the rights to traditionally published books from over a decade ago and re-published them herself—even while enthusiastically traditionally publishing her thrillers. Even with all that experience and knowledge under her belt, she still decided she just HAD to go out and publish something new. She’s independently publishing her newest book, Unstuck: An Audacious Hunt for Home and Happiness—but first, she decided to run a Kickstarter to help her do it.

Did Rachael have any idea how to run a Kickstarter? She did not. Did she know if she’d meet her goals? Nope—although, as you’ll hear in the episode, she had a bunch of good reasons to think she just might.

If you’ve ever toyed with the idea of using Kickstarter to fund a book yourself, this is the episode for you. We talk about why Rachael decided not to seek a traditional publisher, how she decided to try Kickstarter and what it took to get it done, as well as what I call “mistakes we made so you don’t have to”. We talk about the highs—hitting her goal in a matter of hours and getting to create “stretch goals” so raise even more, being chosen as one of Kickstarter’s “Projects We Love”—and the lows, like almost setting goals in the wrong currency, which would have meant she’d essentially be paying people to take her book and overpromising speed and needing to tell people things were not actually live… yet.

And we get way into the weeds on who this might work for and who might want to look for another way to get what they want. If you’re thinking oh, her platform is big, no wonder this worked for her—we talk numbers, and I bet you’ll be surprised. And her final piece of advice is so important that I’m going to lay it right down here:

Write the book first.

Links from the pod

Find Rachael’s Kickstarter, which runs through April 22, 2024, HERE.

Follow Rachael on Instagram HERE and subscribe to her EXCELLENT email about writing HERE. Support her on Patreon HERE.

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