Should You Crowdfund To Self-Publish A Book?

Writer’s Relief
3 min readMar 24, 2021

Crowdfunding seems to be the latest way for people to finance their projects. As a writer interested in self-publishing a book, you might be wondering if crowdfunding is the answer to your budget concerns. Crowdfunding may seem like a good way to get fans and readers to support and directly fund your book while it’s being created, rather than simply purchasing a copy after publication. But does it always work? And should you crowdfund to self-publish a book?

Crowdfunding: Should You Crowdfund To Self-Publish Your Book?

Crowdfunding involves raising money for your book project by collecting donations from your family, friends, readers, fan base, and even strangers. Usually, anyone who contributes will get a special reward from you, which could be a copy of the published book; an autographed book; a discount on the price of the book; exclusive behind-the-scenes insights; a gift that relates to your book’s genre, etc. For writers, a successful campaign could mean that some — or all — of the cost of hiring a professional proofreader, editor, or cover designer doesn’t have to come out of your own pocket.

Some platforms will take a percentage of the funds you raise, but they all allow you to retain 100% ownership of your project. You will, however, have a responsibility to use the money you raise appropriately and come through on delivering your promised product. Find out more about crowdfunding here.

What To Consider Before You Crowdfund

Running a successful crowdfunding campaign will take time and effort — you won’t simply set up a crowdfunding page and then sit back and watch the money pouring in. You are essentially pre-selling your book to readers, which means actively marketing and building a fan base before your book is available for purchase.

You must also have a manuscript with a story, characters, or idea that will get readers excited enough to open up their wallets before the book exists. And depending on what pre-self-publishing step you’re at, it might be a long wait for anyone who donates. Offering promotional giveaways or promising to keep patrons up-to-date with an inside view of the process are great ways to build and sustain interest in your…

Writer’s Relief

Author’s Submission Service Est. 1994. We help authors reach their publishing goals with targeted submissions to literary agents and editors.