I mean there are definitely more than three reasons to pre-order #TheLeftoverBride audiobook but … let’s start with three.
You may have seen that the Kickstarter for #TheLeftoverBride audiobook was not funded. Which yep. Sad. But because I always try to have a backup plan and because I do believe in this project, I have set-up a pre-order for #TheLeftoverBride audiobook in my store.
If you pre-order the audiobook, you will receive additional narrated bonus scenes!
If you pre-order #TheLeftoverBride audiobook before August 2nd, you can get 25% off. Yes, you read that right: for a very limited time, you can get 25% on the pre-order of #TheLeftoverBride audiobook. Just use the coupon: TLB25 at checkout. The coupon is only valid for that item and will expire on August 2nd: so make sure you click pre-order today!
You’ll be able to listen to the audiobook before anyone else… The audiobook will be sent to you via BookFunnel. You can listen to it on your phone or on your computer. You can use the BookFunnel app (very easy) or via a browser (also very easy). And BookFunnel is there to help you if you’re having issues.
Plus: when you pre-order #TheLeftoverBride audiobook directly from my store, I receive more royalties and I don’t have to wait sixty days, so you basically support a small business 🙂
Well, if you’re like me, trying out Kickstarter was a roller coaster full of emotions. Plus, all that marketing? And putting yourself out there? Challenging to say the least. One day, I thought I had the best carefully-crafted plan, the next I thought: what am I doing? I really believed my Kickstarter would get funded. Yet, here I am. The kickstarter was funded at 48% and it had 23 amazing backers.
When your Kickstarter doesn’t get fully funded, you do not receive any of the pledges.
Part of my process…
Also part of my process…
I am so grateful to everyone who backed this project for believing in it and me and Megan.
But now that it hasn’t been funded, what do I do?
I will do a root cause analysis of why I think it wasn’t funded. And what I might do differently should I ever do a Kickstarter again. If you’re an author, there are many free resources available (podcast, blog posts and more that talk about kickstarter for authors – I’ll make a list when I do an episode on my podcast about it).
And when it comes to one of the major next steps: before the Kickstarter announced it wasn’t funded, I updated my online store to offer some of the rewards. For example, readers and audiobook listeners can pre-order #TheLeftoverBride audiobook directly from me (helping with increasing the royalties), they can name a character in #SweetsForLove, get their names in the credit and chat self-publishing with me if they wish. 🙂
It is “all or nothing”, meaning the project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Tuesday, July 19th (8.30 EDT).
(PS: if you’re receiving this post in your email, you signed up at some point on my website If you no longer want to receive those blog posts, there’s a little “unsubscribe” at the bottom of your email.)
I’ve been told this is not possible…That this Kickstarter project of mine with (amazing) rewards will never get funded.It is “all or nothing”, meaning the project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Tuesday, July 19th (8.30 EDT).
(PS: if you’re receiving this post in your email, you signed up at some point on my website 🙂 If you no longer want to receive those blog posts, there’s a little “unsubscribe” at the bottom of your email.)
And maybe they’re right. It’s at 30% funded now with 16 backers …
Full disclosure: the campaign is still ongoing and is currently funded at 30% … So, not sure if I’ll be successful with it or not. And this post is both aimed to be informative and to maybe also spur a few of you to back this project.
You can’t back a project you don’t know about. And transparency is important. Can you tell I used to work as a press officer?
If you don’t know, on Kickstarter, you can pledge amounts for rewards (or just because you want to support a project). The creator is the one coming up with the rewards. Your pledge is only debited if the full project is funded.
So, for this project, the rewards range from: a digital postcard, to talking to me about self-publishing, an early copy of the audiobook, your name in the credits, choosing a name in an upcoming novel/novella, signed copies and so much more… Backers support a creative process. You basically become a “patron of the arts”.
Here are the three reasons I am giving Kickstarter a try this time around.
The Kickstarter can serve as a pre-order for the audiobook. All rewards backers can choose (except the $1 reward) include the audiobook. It’s a win-win for listeners since they receive the audiobook ahead of publication (all they have to do is download an app to listen to it) and it is cheaper than it will be after publication. For me, that means that I receive almost the entire price of the audiobook instead of a much lower royalty when a listener purchases it online and can then use the project funding to compensate my narrator…
I want to distribute the audiobook to libraries. To do so, I cannot have the book exclusive to audible. That means I cannot do a so-called royalty-share plus agreement via ACX with my narrator. This also means I need to compensate my wonderful narrator a higher price per finished hour. Trust me, narrating, mastering and editing an audiobook is a very demanding job. You not only have to be a talented narrator; you also need to be tech savvy and have the needed software.
Financing the project via Kickstarter enables me to not put money up-front—except to run a very low-budget ad. This allows me to use parts of my budget for other projects. Being a self-published author means I remunerate an editor, a copy editor for my books. I have software costs and marketing costs. I also have an ad budget and a translation budget. In addition, if you sell books on certain retailers, you only get paid for those sales about two months later. Financing the audiobook via Kickstarter might enable me to realize other projects during 2022, such as more bilingual books.
And I offer rewards in exchange for your pledge to fund said-production (rewards include: an early electronic copy of the audiobook, your name in the credits, pick a name for a character, more audiobooks, chat with me about self-publishing and so so much more…).
The project will only be funded if it reaches its goal and you can choose your reward (they start at $1 or even pledge whatever you’d like without a reward here).
People who back Kickstarter projects are offered tangible rewards or experiences in exchange for their pledges. This model traces its roots to subscription model of arts patronage, where artists would go directly to their audiences to fund their work.
Closed caption: My story? I was born in 1981 … Oh no, not my story but the story of this project…Oh, okay, Keep reading…
There we go.
#TheLeftoverBride is a book I wrote not long after my autologous stem cell transplant as I needed a novel I could concentrate on that would make me smile. And a book that I hoped would make people smile.
This is the dedication of the book:
It seems it worked for many readers.
Those are some reviews the book has received:
“This book is so much fun! The perfect combination of romance, angst, and humor, it’s your favorite Hallmark movie’s sassier, steamier cousin.”
“Sweet, sassy and fun!”
An audiobook allows me to reach out to so many more people around the world. Maybe making them smile, too.
And by funding this project, you ensure that it can be made available to libraries as well as retailers. In addition, I can make the book available at a lower price around the world if this project is fully funded, than if it was made exclusive to only one distributor.
This book has characters who have been through a lot. Sorcha has OCD (wonder where I got the inspiration for that?). Ryan dealt with a tough childhood (that I’m lucky I had to research a lot as my experience differs from his) and thinking his career defines him (hmmm).
And an audiobook production requires investment up front for my wonderful and amazingly talented audiobook narrator.
Do you know the amount of work for one hour of finished audio (narrated, edited and mastered)?
It takes about 6 hours to produce one hour of finished audio: about two hours of narration and going through the audio to edit it (take away possible repetitions, mistakes, extraneous noises, clicks) and master it (ensuring the noise level is to the requirements. One also needs to re-listen to the finished file for quality control.
So, when you’re listening to an audiobook of about eight hours, it may have taken the narrator/producer about 48 hours to produce, not counting the breaks when you’re recording for your voice or for the way you sit or stand.
That also doesn’t take into consideration the pre-work that might be needed like reading the entire book before you record, making notes to make sure you keep the characters’ voice the same throughout and so much more…
When you hire a narrator/producer, you hire someone who can not only act and perform, you also hire someone who knows the intricacies of audiobook narration and production.
Once the audiobook is distributed, I receive between 10% and 40% of the price of audiobook (depending on the royalty share agreement, on the way a listener buys or borrows the audiobook, on the retailer).
With this payment structure, I might decide to put the audiobook available in places where my return on investment might be higher. It not only means the audiobook wouldn’t be available everywhere, but recouping said investment can still take quite a long time.
In addition, the narrator may also take a risk when they agree to a part of their return being royalty-share because what if the audiobook doesn’t do as well on the retailers? Not from any fault of their own, but maybe the marketing or advertising plan doesn’t work the way it could/should?
So… this would be how the project funding would be used:
First, the audiobook will be made available on a larger distribution platform, which would include libraries. Libraries can then purchase the audiobook at a much lower price;
$2000 for the audiobook narrator/producer: this would be an actual remuneration of $40 per hour for the work done. (This is the median hourly rate for an experienced audiobook narrator). This narrator has gone above and beyond for previous audiobooks which she had agreed to do via royalty-share (where she had reduced her rate per finished hour but, like me, ended up making a loss);
About $130 for Kickstarter fees;
About $130 in processing fees;
About $200 for shipping (including some international shipping);
About $70 in taxes;
About $20 for the platform enabling distribution of audiobooks electronically;
About $250 for ads once the audiobook is available worldwide;
And because I can dream, right? Anything above the goal would be split this way: half for the narrator and half for me.
By funding this project, you not only will help me make more people smile. It will make it easier for me to have the audiobook possibly available in libraries and in more countries around the world where people speak or learn English. But you will also enable me to accomplish other projects (such as more bilingual books and more actual writing…)
So, thank you, thank you, thank you SO MUCH! It means the world to me.
Risks and challenges
All the rewards are either already in production or will be as soon as the project is successfully funded. The only one is the short story reward. That reward might take me a bit more time to get more to, which is why the delivery is longer. When it comes to the short story, you’ll be able to give me names, tropes or story idea. There will be a survey to fill out. If the story idea is out of my competencies or a topic I do not write about, I will deliver a short story that might be slightly different but will still be exclusive.
Self-publishing can be a roller coaster of emotions and is filled with ups and downs. Last week, I heard words every romance author wants to hear (during a pretty stressful day), one of my Vella stories lost a crown … and then regained it. Plus, I get to fangirl over Eloisa James.
Today I also talk about my dream of having Fear Me, Fear Me Not adapted for Lifetime or Netflix… And I have my first voicemail!!!!
And in case you’re wondering what the heck I’m talking about when I say that my Vella story lost its crown…
What is Kindle Vella?
Kindle Vella brings you stories released one short episode at a time, available on the web at http://www.amazon.com/kindle-vella and in the Kindle app. The first few episodes of every story are always free–after that, purchase Tokens and redeem them to unlock episodes. The first few episodes of every story are always free — after that, readers can purchase Tokens and redeem them to unlock episodes. As readers, you can follow the stories you like to keep up with, give an episode a Thumbs up, and when you unlock episodes, you receive one Fave a week you can award to the story you’re enjoying most that week.
I do not know yet what my bonus will be for April 2022 as there’s always a delay between the month when the reads happen and the announcement of the bonus.
Near the 20th of each month, we’ll post the previous month’s bonus amount in your Kindle Vella Dashboard. We will pay your bonus with your total KDP payments approximately 60 days after the end of the month in which the bonus was earned. For example, if you earned a bonus in July, it will be paid with your September payments.
I am thoroughly enjoying writing serialized fiction. Publishing every week is fun for me. And having that schedule is giving me more consistency in the way I write. Plus, I think it’s helping me write in a different way: I’m raising the stakes faster, digging deep into the characters and I am definitely learning how to write very strong endings for each episodes.
And I love love love knowing people are reading my work. The thumbs up? The polls at the end of each episode? It’s a plus for me.
And you know what else was a plus?
Having one of my story with a crown…
I am currently publishing two stories under my pen name and one of them had a crown for three weeks. It took me totally by surprise and when the crown stayed days after days, week after week, I was stoked.
First, that means readers are loving the story. They only have one crown to give and they chose my story? Awwww!
I have no idea who reads my story (except maybe one wonderful reader who got the link from my newsletter). I do videos on TikTok (flip pages) and that’s it. Since it’s a pen name, I don’t post about in Kindle Vella Authors Readers groups. I don’t share the link on this website. I don’t talk about it on my other social media.
And yet… Yet, people who have never read my other books are finding them and giving them thumbs up and crowns?
For three weeks!!!
How many crowns? I have no idea because the Kindle Vella dashboard doesn’t show that info… (and yet it’s used in the calculation of the bonus. Hmmm).
Those crowns should help my May bonus (which I will only find out about next month).
But… today…. today, I checked to make sure the latest episode was published.
And the crown is gone!
I mean I know there are hundreds and hundreds of stories readers can choose from. And maybe they fell more in love with another story last week. Or maybe I didn’t release enough episodes. Or maybe the episode wasn’t their favorite ones.
I am thinking of releasing another episode tomorrow as I ended the last one on a pretty big cliffhanger.
And the latest episode is getting a lot of thumbs up, so I think the story is going in the right direction.
And who knows? Maybe releasing that episode on Sunday (or at the beginning of the week) might keep the story fresh in their mind as they decide on which story to give the crown to.