As I write this, I am working to launch a fundraising project on Start Some Good. I have a great idea and the expertise to make it go if we can raise the cash.
The Folks over at StartSomeGood.com like the project, and they’ve approved me to utilize their site.
You, good blog readers, get to have a sneak peek of the project, and to follow the progress from day one.
I’ll admit that I’m both insanely excited and scared to death about this thing. I am excited because I want to serve authors and my community, and I think there are a lot of folks who will be as excited about this project as I am.
I am scared because of the possibility of failure, and because I have a fairly long history of people showing up to tell me how my big ideas are impossible/bad/wrong. I have learned to sidestep them, but they are sneaky and they affirm my inner editor (who is a massive bitch) who wants me to believe I’m horrible and will always fail. Of course, that possibility always exists, but you can see here why I think the insecurity it causes should mostly be ignored.
I need your help. Once my fundraising campaign is live, I’ll tell you about it, and I’ll ask for your support. But for now, what I need is help with the video, recommendations of (preferably local to Central PA) attorneys and accountants who work in the nonprofit sector, and good writers of literary fiction. And I need more ideas. Ideas beget ideas.
I need you to tell your friends about this project.
I’ll be telling all of my friends and posting updates here, at twitter and–once I hit my tipping point–on the Billtown Blue Lit website, which will be designed and hosted by local web professionals.
I’ll need to form an unpaid board of directors within the next several months, so if that’s something you’re interested in, or to help with anything above (or below), email me at AprilLineWriting@gmail.com or comment here.
Williamsport is a great town, I’m proud to live here. This project is a great match for our already arts-centered community.
Here are the 12 things that are up at the Start Some Good venture as things I’m aiming to accomplish.
1. Bringing the writers to town will provide an opportunity for Blue Lit to contract with local hotels/B&Bs to board the writers. Blue Lit will ONLY feed the authors at local, independently owned eateries.
2. There will be an opportunity for folks in the community to hear these authors read their work, get exposed to new authors, and to meet them and ask questions at the reception and Q&A that will follow each event. The events will be free and open to the public.
3. Blue Lit will work with The Pajama Factory (local artists’ haven) to start a writer-in-residence program which will provide an opportunity for a writer to work on her stuff in a place that’s designated to artists.
4. Farther down the line, Blue Lit will host a writer’s workshop (like the one Tin House does, that’s what I’ve linked), and provide more culture and commerce to the independently owned businesses in the town.
5. Blue Lit will consistently fund-raise to provide a scholarship fund for deserving, gifted writers of single mothers.
6. Blue Lit will employ local college students as marketing interns, and eventually as office personnel.
8. Advertising is key. I’ve been in touch with the local radio folks and they said that they’re willing to tout the series throughout their entire listening area which spans a huge portion of central PA. I’ve also done some research about print advertising and will run twitter, facebook, and blogging campaigns.
9. Blue Lit will provide a stipend that’s on the high end for visiting writers ($1,000), and we will encourage the visiting author to sell books at the event.
10. Blue Lit will work to give writers additional venues by launching an online literary journal, and contests that award cash prizes to new writers. (á la Glimmer Train)
11. I will contract with local freelancers with whom I already have a working relationship to put together the marketing materials (brochure, flyers, website, etc). These will be printed at the local print shoppe.
12. Blue Lit will do a book group focusing on the most recent work of the visitng writer. This will generate hype, and will also raise funds.