Crowdfunding Publishing

October 4, 2014 | 1

There’s been a lot of discussion about self-publishing books, but what about crowdfunding? Online publisher Unbound is proving it could work and has already raised over £1 million and funded 54 books. The model itself couldn’t really be any simpler – “the author pitches an idea and if enough readers support it, the book goes ahead. Once it has been printed, the book’s net profits are then split 50/50.”

is a staff writer for The Millions. She lives in New York and every so often writes things at

One comment:

  1. Yes, the model is simple. The problem, however, is that despite the apparent direct-to-customer model, the only authors who can use this model are the ones who pander to popular culture and try to please their readers.

    Books don’t always make us happy, they don’t always provide us with what we want. That isn’t the point of literature or, indeed, of any art. How would anything new, challenging, audacious be published if this was the model? The publishing industry – as endangered as it is in its current and admittedly business and profit-driven form – is important because once in a while there comes along an editor who is willing to take a risk.

    Even crowd-pleasing bestsellers began as complete risks. The woman who discovered Twilight, for instance, was laughed at by all the other agents at her agency, who thought she was crazy for believing it could work. Millions of dollars later, Twilight – though not my cup of tea and perhaps not yours – has spawned its own genre, paranormal romance. That’s innovation. My point is that it isn’t only highbrow literary fiction that gets discovered by a lone publisher taking a risk on something that sounds crazy – it’s the bestsellers to.

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