Nov 7, 2015

Why You Should Stop Dreaming And Start Creating!

Many of my friends have a dream.

A dream to write a book, publish a game, create a comic strip, design a cool gadget, produce a music CD.

Most of them have some sort of blueprint or initial draft scribbled on a notepad or hidden deep within the recess of their hard drive. The excuses of not fulfilling their dreams are pretty similar: "I am not good enough for a publisher to take up my work!"

Now, stop dreaming and start creating because the gatekeepers (publishers, music labels, editors, producers) are no longer holding hostage to the creative industry, thanks to the rise of social media and crowdfunding.

The king of crowdfunding platform, is no other than Kickstarter.

Wongamania: Banana Economy is slated to be launched on Kickstarter on 19th Nov 2015 but we have received a ton of question what is exactly Kickstarter and how does it work. Since Kickstarter projects mosty originate from US and Europe, it is not surprising that many Asians do not understand exactly how Kickstarter work. Therefore, I have compiled a FAQ on Kickstarter, hopefully to inspire dreamers to start creating and to help supporters understand how it works so that they can help their friends fulfill their lifelong dream.

What is Kickstarter?

Kickstarter is a US based crowdfunding platform which has successfully helped to finance some of the most successful creative projects raising more than $1.9 billion dollars in funds in creative projects, such as films, music, stage shows, comics, journalism, video games, technology and food-related projects. Some of the most successful projects include: Pebble Smart Watch (USD 30 million),  Coolest Cooler ( USD 13 million), Exploding Kitten card game ( USD 8.7 million), OUYA video game console ( USD 8.5 million), Shenmue III video game (USD 6.3 million), Pono Music (USD 6.2 million), Veronica Mars Movie (USD 5.7 million).

How does Kickstarter work?


A creator with a project will list their projects on Kickstarter and state how much they are intending to raise before they are able to commence on the design and production of the project. The creator than will decide on how they will thank the backers by delivering to them either a copy of the product that they are creating, or other relevant goods and services. Many projects also offer creative experiences: visits to the set, naming characters after backers, personal phone calls. Backers who like the project and wish to see the project come to life, can pledge any amount of funds to the project and they are often rewarded proportionately to the amount of funds that they pledged.

Kickstarter project by fellow game designer: Dominic Huang

What will happen if the Pledge Goal is not Met?


 No money will be deducted off from your credit card if the pledge goal is not met.


What are Stretch Goals?


Stretch goals are additional rewards given to all backers when the pledge amount exceeds certain goals set by the project creator. It can be a free upgrade of the quality of the materials used to manufacture the product to a freebie such as an extra card, figurine or even a full expansion of a game.


Can Anyone Start a Campaign at Kickstarter?


Sadly, at this point of time, creators from Asia are unable to directly create a project on Kickstarter and only residents of North America, Australia and parts of Europe are able to do so. Residents not within the list of nations supported by Kickstarter can ask for help from residents from the supported nations. This, of course, make it much more complex for an Asian to start a Kickstarter project.


I am in dire need of money to buy a new BMW. Can Kickstarter support me?


No. Kickstarter only supports creativity ventures that add value to the world at large. Asking for donation to fund your lavish lifestyle is best left to other crowdfunding website or approach a rich relative 


Okie! I am ready to become a millionaire by taking free money from all these stupid backers. Where do I start?


 I suggest that you can shove that idea up your <NSFW> @#$@$# <NSFW> . Starting a Kickstarter campaign requires lots of hard work and preparation. Backers will not support your project, if they sense they you are incompetent or insincere.   

For those people that are still dreaming about getting their creative venture published, stop dreaming and start taking action! Join me and my team in exploring the world of Kickstarter and show the world that Singaporeans are not the dull robots which we are infamous for!

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