Lucy’s is currently running and is fully funded, and Katee is in the midst of fulfillment of her Kickstarter, which was fully funded in about five minutes. We talk about why they went with Kickstarter, the essential elements of a successful campaign, and what they’ve learned from the experience so far.
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Here are the books we discuss in this podcast:
You can find Lucy Eden at her website, LucyEden.com.
Lucy’s Love Notes from Paradise Book Box on Kickstarter is still on going, and is fully funded!
You can find Katee Robert at her website, KateeRobert.com.
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Sarah Wendell: Hello and thank you for inviting me into your eardrums. I’m Sarah Wendell, and this is episode number 507 of Smart Podcast, Trashy Books. Today my guests are Lucy Eden and Katee Robert, and we are talking about Kickstarter. Both authors have had incredibly successful Kickstarter campaigns. Lucy’s is currently running and is fully funded, and Katee is in the middle of fulfillment of her Kickstarter, which was fully funded in about five minutes. We are going to go behind the scenes and talk about everything involving their Kickstarters: what they’ve learned, what are the essentials, and how Kickstarter works, not only as a business but also as a way of connecting with readers and artists in innovative and direct ways. I had so much fun with this interview, and if you’ve been curious about some incredible Kickstarters you’ve seen recently, I hope you enjoy this episode as well.
Hello and thank you, as always, to our Patreon community. You are all wonderful and fabulous. You make sure every episode has a transcript – thank you, garlicknitter – and you make sure the show keeps going every week. If you would like to join our Patreon community, it would be wonderful to have you. Have a look at patreon.com/SmartBitches.
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Let’s do this podcast, shall we? On with my conversation with Katee Robert and Lucy Eden.
Lucy Eden: I write contemporary romance and paranormal contemporary romance and soon speculative romance as Lucy Eden. I’ve been publishing since early 2018, and in addition to – well, in the romance publishing sphere – in addition to that, I also like to design merch and swag for romance-loving people.
Sarah: I love that. I have so many ideas for swag, but my design skills are, like, behind my idea skills by a substantial margin, so I appreciate someone who can like, ooh! I can design a thing! ‘Cause that is not necessarily in my skill set.
Lucy: Hit me up!
Sarah: Yeah, I, I might have to email you.
Lucy: I’ve been a big fan of Smart Bitches, Trashy Books for a while, so.
Sarah: Thank you! That’s really nice of you to say! I really appreciate that!
Katee, what about you? Introduce yourself, please.
Katee Robert: I am Katee Robert. I have been writing full-time I think since 2012 now?
Katee: I’m ancient in romance years.
Katee: And I write contemporary romance and I guess erotic romance and heavy into retellings, like a darkish, dark-light romance, so it’s – [laughs] – that’s kind of where I fall in, like, the categories, which is not really category, but it works! Yeah, so that’s – I do not have awesome design skills like Lucy. I watch what she does and take notes because she’s brilliant. [Laughs]
Lucy: Learned a lot from Katee, so let’s, let’s throw that in there.
Sarah: Okay, this is going to be a really fun conversation. First of all, congratulations on your very successful Kickstarters! This is so cool! I am very curious; I have a lot of questions. I want to know first, what led each of you to decide to develop a Kickstarter campaign? Because I, I think for a lot of people – like, Katee, you said you’ve been in romance for a while; I often feel like I am on the porch in a rocking chair going, oh, are we talking about that again? Okay. Rock, rock, rock.
Katee: Nope! [Laughs]
Sarah: I don’t know that a lot of romance fans would necessarily think, oh! Successful author career – Kickstarter! Like, that, for a lot of people they’re like, wait, what? I don’t understand. So I’m curious: what led each of you to developing these extremely successful campaigns? Lucy, would you like to start?
Lucy: I honestly think that Katee should take this one first, because she is, for me, kind of like the pioneer with this whole, like –
Sarah: True enough!
Lucy: – Kickstarter, so –
Sarah: True enough.
Lucy: – I, I would love to hear what she has to say.
Sarah: Yes, Katee, tell us everything!
Katee: So I’ve been, like, Kickstarter has been one of those platforms that, like, sci-fi and fantasy people have been using, like, really heavily for a really long time, and I am garbage for a good Kickstarter. Like, I back Kickstarters all the time because I’m like, oh, there’s art there; there is, like, pins; there’s cool stuff. And so when, like, last year TikTok found my Wicked Villains books and just ran with it, like, it was a wild experience, and having been ancient in romance years, I know that the ups are up and then the downs come and, and so it’s like, how can I ride this wave as effectively as possible? And, you know, like, there’s an audience for these books; like, we see that special editions are really hot, but – and there, there are more romance, like, book boxes and stuff –
Katee: – now than there were a year ago, but, like, it’s not – like the Illumicrate versions, like the extra-fancy special stuff, like, we don’t necessarily, we hadn’t seen a ton at that point –
Katee: – and nobody had approached me about Wicked Villains at that point, so I was like, oh, you know, I’m just going to do it myself; like, whatever! And I had been kind of kicking around the idea of doing a preorder, and people were getting kind of anxious, ‘cause they’re like, you’re only going to do five hundred? I don’t know about that! Which sounds insane when I say that out loud, but – [laughs] – so I was like, okay, well, I’m familiar with Kickstarter; I haven’t seen a ton of romance on Kickstarter, but there’s no reason we can’t do a Kickstarter, and then just as kind of like a preorder thing to kind of gauge interest of, like, how, how many people actually want to do this –
Katee: – and so I set the goal to if I sold a hundred boxes, ‘cause it’s like, a hundred boxes would be amazing! That’d be super great! And then we hit the goal in like five minutes or something –
Katee: – like something insane. Like, it was, it was the most bonkers twenty-four hours of watching that. So it hit a spot. [Laughs] I’ve been fulfilling Kick-, I’m fulfilling it right now; I’ve been for a month, and I have another hundred boxes to go, so you know we’re, we’re making progress!
But Kickstarter just seemed like a really attractive option to kind of gauge interest, like, offer something that feels exclusive –
Katee: – and now, like, that Brandon Sanderson has seen what Brandon Sanderson has done, like, obviously he’s on a different level, but –
Sarah: Yeah, you know!
Katee: – it offers up some, like, interesting possibilities –
Katee: – because Kickstarter takes, I think, eight percent? And Amazon takes thirty, so, like, if there’s a way to offer up new content on Kickstarter initially, you can kind of take some of the bite out of Amazon, in theory. I don’t know; I’m going to be, I’m going to be circling back to Kickstarter a lot in the future, just because it’s a very interesting platform and, and if it doesn’t fund, it doesn’t fund, and then you do something else. [Laughs]
Sarah: Yeah. But I remember – I have a terrible concept of time, even before the pandemic, and I remember a similar model, I think it was Patreon, that N. K. Jemisin said, I want to write more books, and I have this job, and it gets in my way, so if I can supplement income that is not my job, I have more time for writing, and suddenly she had a full-time writing salary –
Sarah: – through Patreon, because fans were like, yes, please give us more of these wonderful books. So I can see the fan-direct model working, but I think you’re right: the intersection of career and TikTok, because TikTok is so visual –
Katee: And they like print books, which is like the big thing.
Sarah: They like print! Yeah!
Katee: So, and I’d had a lot of questions on, like, when are you going to do a hardcover? And I was like, well, if I’m going to do a hardcover, like, I’m going to do it the most self-indulgent way possible.
Sarah: Oh yeah, right?
Katee: So, like, clinch covers, illustrated, the whole nine yards, and, and if I’m going to do that, like, I’d already funded most of it, like, just ahead of time, which I don’t necessarily recommend, but – [laughs] – but, you know, it worked out.
Sarah: Yeah! And you’re going to want to do a, a gorgeous, heavy, with the pretty paper on the inside and all of that. Oh yeah, you get to have complete creative control. No –
Sarah: It’s, it’s both incredibly liberating and also, I imagine, very intimidating.
Katee: Yeah, I, I really enjoy, like, the planning, strategic planning of the nuts and bolts. Like, the only thing that kind of worried me was the timeline, because where I – paper shortage, and will the things – I made the decision to work with small businesses, which I don’t necessarily think is the best fit for a Kickstarter that goes wild?
Katee: Just because it was like, hey, I know that you’re a two-person job, but can you make me like four hundred more of these? Not ideal matchup, but other than that it went remarkably smoothly. I definitely will do some things differently, ‘cause offering all the customization options got, is getting a little wild with shipping, but Kickstarter has so many tools and, like, I’ve been using BackerKit, which is, like –
Katee: – I don’t want to say idiot-proof, but I am not the most, like, tech-savvy person, and they’re like, here’s how you do this! And, like, I have somebody holding my hand through the whole process; it’s been very helpful. [Laughs]
Sarah: On the, on the user end of BackerKit, I was very impressed.
Sarah: Like, this could not be more obvious.
Lucy, what about you? What led you to developing your currently in-progress, extremely successful, already funded Kickstarter? Congratulations again, by the way.
Lucy: Thank you! So, like Katee, I was a, always a huge fan of Kickstarter. I actually have a very ancient failed Kickstarter that’s probably like, oh God, like fifteen years old by now –
Lucy: – but between, like – yeah, I’m very old – but, like, Kickstarter and Indiegogo, like, I have, you know, I, I constantly just get random things in the mail, like, oh yeah, I did do a Tarot card thing! Oh, look at these cool suitcases! It wasn’t until Katee did her Kickstarter that I even thought about it for my swag boxes. I do, I’ve done swag boxes pretty much for all of my book releases, and they’ve always been just my books?
Lucy: Like, I have a book that I have been, it’s like sixty percent written, but I have like all the swag designed for it. Like, there’s physical, there’s, like, pins and keychains in my house, and my friends are like, could you just finish writing that book before you start, like, making stuff?
Lucy: And I’m like, I don’t know another way. So yeah!
Sarah: It’s just part of the process. [Laughs]
Lucy: Mm-hmm! Mm-hmm! I had an idea to do a subscription box for years that weren’t my books; I’ve really wanted to collaborate with other books. I also really love – especially in the romance community and more specifically the indie community – there’s this really great sense of community and collaboration. I have met very few people – like literally I could count them on one hand – in the last like three or four years who aren’t, like, super generous with their knowledge and information or you can’t slide in, you know, their DMs and ask them about, like, how do you make an audiobook? And what is this, and how do you outline? And, you know, everyone’s really, like, super friendly.
I have this newsletter called Love Notes in Paradise [Notes from Paradise] that I release monthly where I just, it’s just basically kind of my personality as a romance reader, where it’s just kind of chaotic, and it just features everything about romance. It’s not just rom-com; it’s not just paranormal; it’s not just interracial or, or Black romance; or it’s just every – ‘cause that’s how I read: I read –
Lucy: – everything, so I’m always, like, reaching out to authors saying, hey, the theme of this month is this; do you want to do an interview? And, you know, I’ve, it’s very rare that somebody, like, says no, so.
Lucy: I really wanted the box to just reflect how, like, creative and awesome and inclusive and fun the romance community is –
Lucy: – and that was – yeah – and that was the idea for my box. Getting all the money first – well, one, you get all the money first –
Lucy: – and you get to see if people actually want it –
Lucy: – before you start investing money. [Laughs]
Lucy: So that was a very, you know, that was a very real question! Like, like if something like this popped up, would I back it? Absolutely. Would I be, like, staring at my bank account for like twenty minutes before I hit Send? Yes! [Laughs] So that was, like, a huge consideration; like, are people – like, this is awesome; this is definitely something that I would want, but are people going to go for it? ‘Cause it is not cheap.
Lucy: I, I was actually surprised by how quickly it was funded, because I was, you know, even before I hit Send, I was considering, like, you know, lowering the goal, because, like, could I even raise this in thirty days? And it turned out that –
Lucy: – yeah, I could raise it in three days, actually.
Katee: Yep! [Laughs]
Lucy: Yeah, and, and I’m also surprised at how many people chose, like, the higher, the higher-priced tiers –
Lucy: – ‘cause I, ‘cause I also, you know, kind of went a little overboard with just making tiers for every single price point? So everyone who wanted to be involved felt like they could get something?
Lucy: ‘Cause I was really, also really concerned about that, but yeah, most people have chosen to get, like, the stuff. [Laughs]
Lucy: They want the stuff!
Sarah: Backing up for a second: you mentioned the desire for art, the desire for gorgeous print editions, and you mentioned exclusivity, that the things that you’re offering in the Kickstarter are things that for a while you can only get through the Kickstarter, so you’re already targeting a specific group of fans. What do you think are the other essential elements for a successful Kickstarter? Obviously you have to know your audience; you have to understand what’s happening in each tier; and you have to re-, have rewards that fit; and you also have to have a community that you can engage with and communicate with.
Sarah’s Dogs: Bark, bark! Bark!
Sarah: I don’t know if you can hear my dogs, but they are absolutely losing their mind right now about Kickstarters? They think they are great.
Lucy: They’re excited!
Sarah: So what do you think are the essential elements, from your experience, for a successful Kickstarter?
Katee: The things that I’ve learned is that romance – I’m hoping that this becomes more common as time goes on, but when I did it people were like, what’s a Kickstarter? How does it work?
Sarah: Yeah! [Laughs]
Katee: What do you mean, I’m not guaranteed to get my rewards? I don’t understand. When do I get charged for this?
Sarah: Why isn’t this just a purchase? Like, I buy the thing –
Sarah: – I get the thing? No, it’s –
Sarah: – it’s got that, that timeline and that anticipation. Like, is it going to be funded?
Sarah: Are we going to get close? Ahhh! Yeah.
Katee: Yeah, the whole thing. And so what I found for the, I think, I saw the most, like, on the back end, like, bumps? Is I had pre-launch page dates; I had most of the information, like, that I was talking about and, like, prepping people. Like, this is when it’s going to happen! Am I going to get wild and push the button early? I don’t know! (I did.) [Laughs] But – and then each – ‘cause you can post updates, and updates go out to everybody who, like, has pledged it or follows it or whatever –
Katee: – and I was revealing art consistently throughout the whole – I did forty-five days because I launched early; I recommend thirty as, like, kind of the sweet spot? But every time I posted art, it gave an organic way for people to go check out the Kickstarter and see what it’s all about –
Katee: – without me being like, hard sell! Here’s the Kickstarter! It’s like, look at this cool art that I commissioned!
Katee: And then, like Lucy said, having a lot of price points in so that people could be like, oh, I don’t want to buy this whole fricking swag box with all this crap in it; I only want the swag, or I only want the paper swag, or I only want like one book. And so having those entry price points and then add-ons on the back end so that they can get more stuff if they change their mind and, like, you know, the exclusivity.
Katee: ‘Cause my, the books will be available afterwards, but all the swag is only available for the Kickstarter, and then –
Katee: So knowing it’s like that FOMO, and I’m hoping that the FOMO for the next Kickstarter, that this paved the ground so, so people are like, oh, I’m familiar with this; I’m ready to jump on this now!
Katee: It kind of creates that, like, normalcy in our community that it’s like, oh, this is a thing that I’m familiar with now. I know that I’m only going to get it here, and I’m going to grab it.
Sarah: We also have a lot of limited-time-only campaigns within romance in social media, where you have a limited-time-only, low-priced boxed sets that then disappear, and you have limited-time-only fundraisers! There’s been auctions for all number of, of charitable causes and disaster response. So the, the community is getting more and more familiar with the Fear Of Missing Out, limited time only, act now, you’re going to lose out on this cool stuff, but you also both feature a lot of artists? And the intersection of fan art and fan engagement and highlighting artists who are engaged with your work I think is one of the more interesting creative elements as well.
Lucy, what about you? What do you think are the essential elements for a good Kickstarter in your experience, both as a person who, who bids and funds on things – [laughs] – and someone who’s run one?
Lucy: Yeah. Yeah, and, you know, it’s funny you mention the auctions, ‘cause I’ve actually run a couple of those auctions, and I participate in a lot of them, and I’m always shocked at how, like, how much money we raise in such a short amount of time? It is –
Sarah: It’s amazing!
Lucy: Yeah. Yeah. It’s, it’s –
Sarah: It’s a very generous community! Yeah.
Lucy: It’s beautiful! But yeah, I’m, I’m always shocked. But yeah, that’s, that’s a thing. I think just being a part of this community does a lot of the heavy lifting –
Lucy: – because it is such an inclusive and generous community?
Lucy: We just, we’re just a bunch of goofballs who love Love and, you know, love, like, having nice things –
Lucy: – so that’s – [laughs] – that’s helpful. I, I do think what Katee mentioned about having a pre-launch? I didn’t do a super long pre-launch? I, I probably would have done a longer one, but again, I mean, it worked, so. Having a pre-launch is great; talking about it is great; having things to share and really just engage in getting people excited is great; having a plan.
Lucy: One of my strategies, because my box is, it features just a lot – I, I feel like this box is very collaborative. Every box – it’s seasonal – every box features six authors, and there, you know, there were specific parameters, popularity-wise, of the books to get into the box, so I also think that helped? Like, you know, people are very excited that Katee is going to be in the first box, so –
Sarah: I saw that!
Lucy: People who are, you know, excited to get yet another custom, you know, exclusive paperback from Katee Robert are like, okay, well, you know, I’m not too sure about Lucy Eden; I’ve heard of her but, you know, Katee’s in this, so –
Lucy: – like, here’s my money.
Lucy: And, you know, there, you know, Sierra Simone, Kennedy Ryan –
Katee: You have a stellar lineup. Like –
Sarah: Oh, it’s, it’s amazing!
Katee: – every single box, I was like, yeah, I need all of them, obviously. Like –
Sarah: Oh yeah.
Katee: And I think that’s one of the smart things that you did is having those upper tier, like, rewards, because as you’ve seen, like, people will pay big bucks to get all the cool stuff. Like, it’s carefully curated.
Sarah: It’s, yeah, that’s the key part: it’s, it’s –
Sarah: – carefully curated. You’re – and, and I remember, Lucy, Katee’s totally right: I was scrolling your page and I went, wait, what?! Whoa, what?! Wait, more?! Holy crap! Like, I kept scrolling and going, this is amazing! Holy crap! Yeah, it, it’s the, it’s that –
Sarah: – incredible intersection of –
Sarah: – people who are, already have an excited fan base and people who are familiar with those names are like, oh, wait, I get all of this cool stuff and a book from this person who I really, really like? Very cool.
Lucy: Yeah! Yeah, and merch. So I’ll be designing the covers, but the, the authors had a choice between an illustrated or discreet cover, which are the two hot covers that are, everybody’s doing now, but the artist for the illustrated covers, her name is Hellhoneyy, and people who are my fans know her very well, because she does basically all of my covers.
Lucy: So people are, you know, also excited about that. I teamed up with Hello Lovely Box, who, like, everybody knows. I mean, they’re just, like, the, you know, she’s just like the queen of, you know, bookish merch –
Lucy: – and swag boxes, and she’s, you know, also a, a walking, like, sunbeam of a human being.
Katee: Honestly, she helped me out so much with merch for mine, ‘cause I was like, how do book sleeves work? And she’s like, here, here’s the contact information; here’s what you need to know; and I was like, oh my God, thank you!
Katee: So she’s amazing.
Lucy: She is amazing! Yeah, and, yeah, and just teaming up with other, you know, people that I was a fan of is making it very, hmm, I guess varied would be the correct word, ‘cause it’s not, you know, like – and a lot of the authors were like, but what’s the theme? Is it paranormal? Is it contemporary? I’m like, it’s just, it’s romance. [Laughs] It’s, that’s it. It’s just a box full of romance.
Sarah: Yep. And it also says to readers, you know, the thing that you love is, is art, and you can get a special edition of this thing that everyone a lot – I mean, romance and genre fiction still – much less now, thank goodness, but there’s still this, this sort of looking down upon genre fiction, looking down upon romance, and there’s still resistance to the idea that romance be taken seriously in some quarters, and here you have readers who are like, I love this thing. I get to have art about my thing, and I get to have the thing that I love in a form of art. Like, that’s very unique –
Sarah: – and that’s still, like you said, Katee, that is not ground that’s being explored right now.
Sarah: You’ve, you’ve had successful Kickstarters, but this is also a, a business.
Sarah: It’s a, it’s a, it’s a big business now! You’ve got a lot of people! What are some of the challenges? ‘Cause you’ve mentioned strategy, and you’ve mentioned organization, and that’s really, really sexy; tell me more! So what are some of the challenges of coordination and delivery? The, the, looking outside in at the logistics of delivery kind of makes my head spin. Did y’all, like, lose a room in your house?
Katee: I lost my entire house.
Katee: It’s, I’ve had, we’re, it’s, we’ve looked like we were moving for the last, like, couple months, because it’s just piles of boxes.
Katee: It’s like that’s that book that – ‘cause it’s a six-book series like that. I don’t know that I’d do again, but yeah, it, my entire house. We’re like, we’re almost done! We’re almost have the downstairs back. Like –
Katee: – I’m ready. Sorry, I just jumped right in there.
Sarah: Please tell me everything! I am so nosy and so curious. Like, I was like, maybe they got one of those little moving PODS, and all the stuff’s in the pod in the driveway, and you go on out to the trailer and check it?
Katee: That, that would have been really smart. I wish we had a little more property, ‘cause my husband’s like, if, you need a, like a, a shop for, like, your stuff. Logistically, actually using BackerKit kind of saved my life, because it groups them into groups by packing items?
Sarah: Oh, that’s smart!
Katee: And so I can print out for like these three people and then push those.
Sarah: And you can batch process by –
Sarah: – these people all have the same elements: boom, boom, boom, boom, ship.
Katee: Yeah, I, I thought I was going to have to do that manually, and I was, like, really sad about it, but then, like, as soon as we got to the shipping part it, like, auto-generated for me, and I was like, oh, I love you! My, my mailman and I have a good relationship now because we talk a lot, because I do, like, pickup orders, and so, like, I don’t do pickup orders on Monday, ‘cause he’s like, please don’t.
Katee: And, ‘cause it’s, there’s, like, a lot of Amazon packages and stuff on Monday –
Katee: – and so, like, we kind of nav- – if I was having to take all these individually to the post office, I would, I, ooh, that’d be awful. So I ship about like thirty a day is about my capacity, and yeah, it’s just a lot of, like, pack everything, check – I have a, a quality control, like, postcard thing that I did that I double-check everything. I’m still making mistakes; I’ve – but I’ve only made like five mistakes out of like six hundred orders, so I –
Katee: – I feel like I’m pretty good about it.
Sarah: Well done!
Katee: Yes. [Laughs]
Katee: So, but the, the nice thing about Kickstarter is that when people are familiar with it, they, they don’t expect stuff to ship quickly.
Katee: And so it’s like I had my shipping –
Lucy: – completely forget I backed something, and I get a random box with something –
Lucy: – I’m like, ooh!
Katee: I don’t know –
Lucy: I was like, wine bottle! That’s cool!
Katee: Yeah, I was like, I totally forgot that I backed this ever! I had my shipping date in June, because I was like, we’re going to, we’re going to, like, make it as far out as possible, so if I have hiccups it’s not a big deal. I’ve, I’ve had some hiccups; like, some of the, the, I had more than ten percent of the books were kind of messed up, so I’m having to reorder more, but –
Sarah: Ooh! That’s annoying.
Katee: Yeah, it’s, it’s not ideal. [Laughs] But, but you know, it happens. I, it’s one of those things. We’re still well on track to get everything shipped well before June. But the nice thing about Kickstarter, as far as, like, that sort of thing is, is because I can communicate with everybody –
Katee: – at the same time, and that’s one of the big reasons why I went with it initially is because I didn’t want to have to be fielding individual people being like, where’s my order?
Katee: Like, what’s happening? And so it’s like being able to mass communicate is very attractive when you’re dealing with, like, this number of people.
Sarah: And how many orders are you fulfilling from your Kickstarter?
Katee: I think last count was like 876. [Laughs]
Sarah: Ooh, damn!
Katee: Like I said, in the future, probably won’t do six books, or at least I’d do digital signatures, ‘cause that was, um, it’s a lot, it’s a lot, my hand hurts a lot, so. [Laughs] But –
Sarah: Get those boost exercises going? Yep.
Katee: Yeah, seriously. Just having to do it in batches –
Lucy: My box will have digital signatures, Katee, so don’t worry. You’ll just have to do once; it’ll be printed into the book; you’re good.
Katee: Yeah, see, I, I should have taken notes from you, ‘cause you’ve done that before and I was like, that’s so clever! And then I forgot – [laughs] – until it’s too late, so.
Lucy: It’s very exciting!
Sarah: So your house is full of boxes –
Sarah: – you’re doing about thirty a day; you have a good personal relationship with your mail carrier. One thing that strikes me is that you are clearly a human, and, you know, we, as consumers have gotten so used to –
Lucy: I do have questions about that, though, because she, like, publishes a book every three days.
Lucy: She, she does like seven TikToks a day. [Laughs]
Katee: Oh, that’s ‘cause TikTok’s my happy place, and I don’t have to shower for TikTok anymore ‘cause I realize, like, they don’t care?
Katee: And so I’m just like, aw, I’m in my writing gear; like, what’s up?
Lucy: We’re going to have another meeting about that, because I did just, like, one random Kickstarter where I – not Kickstarter; a TikTok – where I saw this, this sound that was really funny, and women were using it to, like, preen, and I was, like, about, you know, it’s like, oh, she’s so hot, and women were, like, using it to show off how hot they were? And I was like, what if I did a TikTok about how, about doughnuts? And I just did this really quick, quick reel about doughnuts and people loved it, and I was like, wait, I’m not wearing any makeup; I’m stuffing my face with doughnuts. How is this the thing?
Katee: My –
Lucy: – spending like hours making stop-motion videos and –
Katee: Yep. No, my, my –
Sarah: – a doughnut.
Katee: – videos that have done the best, like, and it’s partly just because it’s like, oh, I’m inspired; I’m going to do it real quick? But, like, the videos, I think I have one video that got over a million views, and it’s literally me just like this. Like, there’s no fancy, there’s no lipstick, there’s no anything; it’s just me reacting to a video of somebody did that was really funny. TikTok really values genuine over –
Katee: – like, curated? It’s kind of been, like, freeing in a way, ‘cause I’m like, oh, I don’t have to be, like, Instagram perfect for this app.
Sarah: Right. So Lucy, you’ve got your Kickstarter funded. It’s not happening yet.
Sarah: What is your strategy for delivery coordination, logistics of actually making this happen? Like –
Lucy: Okay –
Sarah: – what are some of the challenges that you are like, all right, let’s do this? I got a white board, I got Post-its; this Kickstarter is going down.
Lucy: So I actually run three businesses from home, and one of them actually includes a lot of shipping?
Lucy: I have my own, like, shipping station set up with, like, the special labels and tapes and –
Sarah: I got that in my closet! Yep!
Lucy: Totally! So I’m pretty, I’m pretty adept at, like, the shipping game –
Lucy: – and knowing what things take. Also with my Kickstarter, I mean, I’m, I don’t see myself getting anywhere near having to deal with eight hundred orders? Like, I, I actually offered to help you at one point; do you remember, when I saw?
Lucy: She posted a, a, either a picture or video of, like, a pallet of flat pack boxes that was like as tall as she was, and I was like, listen, I can check flights. Like, what, what’s your, what are you doing? Do you need help? [Laughs]
Katee: If I hadn’t had to sign all the books, it would have gone a lot smoother, ‘cause, like, we do Patreon and I, I ship, like, I don’t even know what number we’re up to, like, six hundred or something books every other, every time I have a release with Patreon, and we can do that in a day.
Katee: But with the six books and signing in each box being individual, that – like, ‘cause I, my neighbors are like, we’ll, we’ll do, we’ll do a line; we’ll do a ship, like a, a packing line, but, like –
Lucy: Oh, that’s so sweet!
Katee: It was, I really appreciate all the help, offers I got. It just, I didn’t pre-sign the books, and I offered personalizations on some of ‘em, and so that means that, unfortunately, we just can’t move that fast.
Katee: If, if – again, in hindsight, we’d do things a little bit differently, because I could have shipped this stuff super fast if I had been a little more strategic. [Laughs]
Sarah: Or maybe personalization becomes a much higher tier.
Katee: Yeah, yeah. No, my husband, thankfully, was like, you are not personalizing more than a hundred of these boxes. He’s like, absolutely not; I refuse to allow it. And I was like, no, it’s fine! And he’s like –
Katee and Sarah: – no –
Katee: – Katee. He’s like, do the math; that’s a lot of books.
Lucy: Yeah. So the other thing I did was I, I varied their, I severely limited the amount that I could do for each tier? Yeah, I don’t expect to hit the limits; you know, I just don’t want, I just don’t want it to go nuts. And it –
Sarah: Yeah! Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Lucy: Yeah. So –
Sarah: ‘Cause you have to consider what, what I call your billable hour.
Sarah: Right, you have to consider the billable hour –
Sarah: – of the work that you’re doing. Now, I don’t want to, obviously, I’m not going to ask for specifics, ‘cause I’m not that nosy, but how, are you comfortable with the profit margins of having done these Kickstarters? Is this, is this a solid billable hour for you? Let’s put it that way.
Lucy: Yeah, for me it is! I actually have – I know you can’t, like, zoom in that close, but one of the postcards actually has, like, what the, what the, the cost is for each tier so I can figure out – ‘cause I also offer discounts. It’s an, it’s an annual, it’s a yearly box, it’s quarterly –
Lucy: – so the more seasons you buy, the cheaper it is per –
Lucy: – item, so I’ve had to make sure that I wasn’t going crazy with the discounts and –
Lucy: – like, losing money.
Sarah: Got to check your math!
Lucy: Exactly. So yeah, it is definitely, it’s definitely profitable? It’s, it’s a lot of fun for me; I genuinely enjoy it; so that’s, like, part of my payment? So.
Sarah: For sure, for sure!
Lucy: I mean, I could have, I mean I probably could have charged more, but it was, it was at the point where the price, the prices they are now, they were, it was just at the point where it was starting to make me, like, a little, like, stomach-churn-y? So I was like, okay, that’s the right – [laughs] –
Lucy: – that’s a good place to stop, even though I probably, like, could have done more or had, or, or charged the same price and had less stuff in the boxes, because there are a lot of stuff in the boxes, and, you know, people are like, that’s, you know, nobody puts that much stuff in boxes, but –
Lucy: – I don’t know; it’s kind of my thing.
Sarah: That’s –
Lucy: There’s always, like, it’s like a clown, it’s like a clown car when you open one of my swag boxes. It’s like –
Sarah: Oh, the candles come out! [Hums a little of “Entry of the Gladiators”]
Lucy: There’s a candle, there’s a bath bomb, there’s a book, there’s a mug, there’s pens, there’s – you know. So.
Katee: That’s amazing.
Lucy: I love that!
Sarah: And also –
Lucy: That’s kind of what, what you want, you know, in –
Sarah: Yeah, and it’s not just the exclusivity of it; it’s, you want the, you want the tier, you want the box to be bountiful. Like, there’s also that feeling of, look at all of the things that I get for my money, which is obviously the foundational marketing of subscription boxes, going all the way back to, like, remember Birchbox and makeup? You got all these –
Sarah: – samples, and it was like, wow! For this amount of money I got all of this stuff! There’s that –
Sarah: – sort of bounty of, of, of, and generosity and plentifulness of, like, wow, I’m really, I got a lot of stuff for my, you know, fifty dollars, my seventy-five dollars.
Katee, what about you? Is the, is the billable hour satisfying for you at this point? Are you like, wow, I, I, I need some Sanderson money for this next time?
Katee: Yeah, it – so I have this habit of being like, no, I, that’s way too much money; we don’t have to charge that. But that’s why every time I talk about Patreon or Kickstarter might charge more than you think, because we – especially in romance – we give away a lot of free stuff –
Sarah: We so do!
Katee: – and so it’s hard to be like, no, I should be paid for this, or paid, like, appropriate amounts. And so I –
Katee: – what I did to, like, gut check myself is I put in my budget like for everything wholesale, and then I put in what it would retail for?
Katee: And it retailed for slightly more than I was charging, so I was like, that’s fine; I’m still making a profit. Like, it’s good. My profit’s a little less than it would have been, ‘cause I made some missteps along the way. Like, I messed up the bookmarks, and they were reversed on two of them, so I had to reorder, and, and it was, like, my fault, not their fault, so.
Katee: And, and, like I said, I, slightly more of the books were damaged than I expected, which I do plan on selling those at a discounted price, so, like, I, it’ll be fine, but, like – and, and shipping prices went up between when I finished my Kickstarter and when –
Sarah: Oh yes!
Katee: So it did, I mean, I’m still making a profit. Like, it’s just not as much profit as I had been –
Katee: – hoping for, but at the same time, we’re still in the green! That’s all –
Sarah: Yeah! As long as you’re in the green.
Katee: Or the black or whatever; that’s all that matters.
Sarah: So looking at this experience from like the, you know, the thirty-five-thousand-foot view, what do you think the success of your campaigns and other campaigns in the writing world indicate about the way readers are now engaging with books and authors? We’ve touched on that a couple of things, in a couple of ways that fandom has evolved, and the ways fans interact with books has changed. What do you think the success of your campaigns indicates about the sort of relationship between artists and fans, and fans who are artists, and the authors, and the creators? What do you, what do you learn from this experience?
Lucy: I think it cuts out a lot of the gatekeeping that has plagued indie authors for so long?
Sarah: That’s really a good point.
Lucy: Because at the – yeah – at the core, at the end of the day, it’s always about the readers, because if you’re trad or you’re indie, those are the people that are purchasing the books.
Lucy: Those are the people where you’re getting your money from, so if you can cut through whatever barriers are up there and get to them completely and say, what do you want? What can I, you know, what can make your reading experience better? What, what is exciting for you? And be able to give that to them directly –
Lucy: – without stops, without a bunch of, you know, people who aren’t the readers kind of giving their input. I think it’s amazing! I think it’s going to just make things better, because I’m also a reader –
Lucy: – you know? And I want, I want to read the things that I want to read, and I don’t want, you know, I don’t want it to be judged by, you know, a bunch of people in a room saying, oh, I don’t know! Somebody’s going to tweet about this! Like, I – [laughs] – you know –
Katee: Or are they, do they have a big enough platform that we’re going to make money on this? Because when you’re doing it yourself, your bottom line is so much lower than like, like Illumicrate or whatever being like, is this author going to sell boxes? When you only have to sell enough for your profit, the –
Katee: – margins are so much different.
Lucy: Yeah! I mean my Kickstarter, it, it was funded at, with, like, I think it was like forty-two backers. It’s just me and like forty-two people saying, okay, this is, what you’re giving us is exactly what we want –
Lucy: – and that’s great, but, you know, in, in another platform, forty-one people, it’s, it’s like nothing; it wouldn’t even, like, oh, we can’t even do this because it’s not feasible; but for, you know, a smaller creator, this small amount of people, exactly what they want, and, like, what’s, like, that’s amazing!
Sarah: And the, and the way in which readers preserve their relationship with books and authors has changed. It used to be that the, you know, the artifact of an experience was maybe remembering where you read it, or you went to a book-signing and you met the author and you got the signed book as an artifact of, of having met that author. And I’ve been to enough book-signings – I remember the old RT signings, when they started doing YA authors in the same room, and, like, seeing teenagers come all dressed up and absolutely, like, dissolving with excitement to meet an author, and I’m like, oh, I remember what that was like. That is now carrying forward into adulthood with –
Sarah: – candles and stickers, and I, I have often considered doing swag, but I have a limited amount of room for stuff? I have teenagers. They have stuff.
Sarah: They got a lot of stuff. But stickers!
Sarah: Stickers are great! They don’t take up any room! They’re just little, and they, they do so much!
Lucy: Stickers are great, and I will also say, I mean, like, another thing that has really, like, reduced barriers to entry for people wanting to sell merch are, like, print-on-demand companies. Like, you could have a store where it’s print on demand, where you have, like, this awesome Smart Bitches, Trashy Books t-shirt, and you don’t have to have a box full of like seventeen different sizes.
Sarah: Yep! Just boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, between Redbubble and Tees – yeah, there’s tons of options.
Katee, what about you?
Sarah: What do you think the success of your campaign indicates about the way reader engagement is changing and evolving?
Katee: I think that the, like, historically, in romance, there’s been a lot of just, like, because they were often mass-market paperback or paperbacks, like, over hardcovers because the price point is so, like, accessible, that there wasn’t a lot of room for, like, special editions, because people were like –
Katee: – oh, they only paid five bucks for this book; they don’t want to pay twenty-seven for a special edition.
Katee: And it’s been – like I said, it’s changing a little bit, but this allows for, like, smaller authors – or not smaller authors, but authors who aren’t, you know, the top, top, like, outliers of romance – to do special editions for the people who want them, for the super fans that are like, no, I want this book on my shelf in a fancy way. There’s a, especially with, like, TikTok and Instagram, the, like, shelfies and, like, that kind of thing. There’s this, like, we want to show off our books that we love, that we’re proud of, that we’re fans of. And so I think that allowing, like, obviously there’s a desire for that, which is really awesome. I do think also – and this is not like – ‘cause my campaign was, the series has been out for a while – I think that authors doing new content is going to be more popular going forward too, because it gives the fans a sense of ownership in that –
Katee: – like, I helped fund it! I helped make this a possibility. I mean, Kickstarter is a little bit for them like Patreon, for example, ‘cause Patreon, like we talked about N. K. Jemisin, is like, hey, I want to do this full-time; I need a base threshold each month to, like, make that happen –
Katee: – whereas Kickstarter’s like, like – I keep coming back to Brandon Sanderson ‘cause I don’t want a forty-million-dollar Kickstarter, but, like, what he does was so clever and, like, here’s a whole series that you will get shipped to you. You don’t have to remember when it comes out!
Katee: You, it’s going to – or like four books; I don’t think it was an actual series; whatever he did. But here’s, you’re, over the year you’re just going to get packages that are going to be four brand-new books from me that you don’t have to remember. It’s just going to show up.
Katee: And, like, that’s so clever! And, I mean, I’m going to do that at some point. [Laughs]
Katee: Like, for sure! ‘Cause I think that –
Lucy: Yes! That’s literally, yeah, that’s literally what I did. It’s like, you know, spring, summer, fall, winter; like –
Lucy: – you’re just going to get a box of stuff. [Laughs]
Katee: Merry Christmas, four times a year! Like –
Katee: – like, Lucy, and I took notes for this for my Kickstarter: the packaging is so important, because it –
Sarah: Oh yeah!
Katee: – ‘cause people do unboxing videos, and then that community of, like, we’re unboxing; we did this; here it is. Like –
Katee: – look how pretty it is, is so, like, such a key component of that that’s been really successful, and, and it’s going to be really successful through Lucy’s, because you’re brilliant. [Laughs]
Lucy: I, packaging? I feel like it’s, like, part of, it’s, like, part of the, the whole experience?
Lucy: And I am the kind of goober who, like, loves to give gifts to people but also, like, watch them open it and enjoy it?
Lucy: So I, like, when I do swag boxes, like, the, seeing the unboxing videos on, on social media is like, yes! It’s, it’s, it’s like the greatest feeling. So yeah, I feel like every part of the process, not just the stuff: getting the package in the mail; the, like –
Sarah: The experience of it.
Lucy: – taking it out of the bag and, like, looking at all the design, you know, on the packaging; and then, like, every little – like, I don’t waste any real estate. I wish I had a box to show you – oh, I do! They’re everywhere.
Lucy: Right, and also, like, what Katee was, was saying about how her series came out a while ago: these are people who’ve already read it –
Lucy: – so you really have to work extra hard to give them a, you know, a more –
Sarah: Wow! And even the fold flap says Memories Are Precious. You are, you are underscoring the experience of, this is an experience –
Sarah: – of opening this box that you’re going to remember –
Sarah: – and then you have a message on the inside flaps with all of your socials –
Katee: I, I love that you did that, ‘cause I did a card that was like a thank-you note and also, like, hey, I would love if you tagged me on social media, but having it on the box is so smart. Like, I’m going to do that next time. [Laughs]
Sarah: One less thing to pack, yeah.
Sarah: That’s gorgeous!
Lucy: Right. So this is actually, it, like, caters – this is the last swag box I did for, I, I had my first audiobook! Woohoo!
Lucy: I got an audio and color grant, so kind of hearkening back to the question you said before, I did this audio-, this swag box, I did a limited run of twenty-four, no twenty boxes? And I designed a special edition paperback, and I designed the whole thing from scratch, had new cover, new everything, and I was able to just print twenty-four of them –
Sarah: Print on demand!
Lucy: – and –
Lucy: – and still be able to sell them at a profit, so, like, that’s something you couldn’t do –
Lucy: – even a couple years ago. So for that –
Lucy: – those core readers who, like, you know, they’ve already read the story, they already love it, so you really have to –
Katee: They just want the keepsake of having, like, the physical thing and, like, the cool thing.
Lucy: Right. Right.
Sarah: Yeah, for sure!
Lucy: This, like, this all only makes sense if you’ve read the book, but whoever’s purchasing this –
Sarah: They get it.
Lucy: – like, like yeah, and this is like the logo for the fictional hotel that they’re fighting over.
Lucy: You know, it’s not going to be like – I mean, except if, unless you’re Katee or Brandon Sanderson – it’s not going to be like hundreds and hundreds of people, but if it’s like twenty-five –
Sarah: Those people get it!
Lucy: – or fifty –
Katee: Well, and Kickstarter’s so scalable, which I think, I think when Brandon Sanderson launched his, a lot of people were like, oh God! Like, what the heck? I could never do that. It’s like, yeah, but you don’t have to, ‘cause, like –
Katee: – you can sell like forty boxes or fifty books or whatever and, like, as long as you set your goal threshold at like a reasonable for, like, whatever or low – ‘cause, like, you can go over and, like, that’s –
Katee: – what I think some people kind of get – like, that’s a key component of a successful, a successful Kickstarter is setting the goal high enough to cover costs but low enough that, like –
Katee: – you can reach it.
Lucy: Yeah. And with Kickstarter, you can add tiers partway. So, like, my plan, and I’m – you know, it’s, I mean, it’s so early; I, like, I just have no idea what’s going to happen – but I did, I did put limits on all of the tiers, so if there was one tier that kind of went bananas I could add –
Lucy: – a second one of the same tier with a limited amount and just say, okay, this, this one is going to ship a little bit later –
Katee: [Laughs] Yeah.
Lucy: – and still be able to do it, but you can, like, control, like you can keep it from bottle-necking to where it’s, like, kind of unsustainable, so –
Katee: Yeah, yeah.
Sarah: And once you know how it works, you can start experimenting with new options for people, because, like you said, part of what you’re giving them is the experience of opening the box, and a lot of that is like a secret code. Like you said, that box isn’t going to make as much sense to somebody who hasn’t read the book, but somebody who has read the book, it’s like, ohhh! I get what this is! You’re, you’re sort of accessorizing the experience of having read a book.
Sarah: It’s not just, I read the book; I’m done with the book. There’s more ways to revisit that book in the experience between the reader and the book, and that’s where this project –
Sarah: – is located.
Lucy: And that’s one of the magic things about merch. Everyone’s had, like, a, a really sick book, book hangover where the book is done and you’re just kind of like, oh, I’m not in that world anymore. Like, I can’t come home from work and, you know, like, be with my favorite people –
Lucy: – but you can, like, have a mug that has the logo of the coffee shop where they fell in love and hung out every day. You can have a t-shirt that has, like, the funny thing that the hero said when he, like, fell over the stick in the woods or something.
Lucy: You know, there’s, like, you can still stay there, and that’s, like, the really cool thing about merch. Yeah, like the, you know, the Villains Do It Better pins? I love those.
Katee: In hindsight, I would have done my add-ons differently, because I did, like, a pin and stickers and a book sleeve, and the book sleeve kind of mucked up my dimensions for my box, so I had to do two separate sizes of boxes because it’s too big, but, like, that whole thing, I was like, nobody’s going to want these add-ons, but, you know, it’s stretch goals, it’s fine, and people wanted! They wanted, like a, a good number of people had every single thing I offered, and – but yeah, it’s just, it’s the –
Sarah: This is a way to revisit that experience of the book!
Katee: Yeah. Yeah, people are really enjoying, like, the whole thing, and it makes me happy. [Laughs]
Sarah: And, and you’re both enjoying it too! Like, you are both really excited –
Sarah: – and engaged and ex-, and really happy about what you’re doing.
Lucy: Yeah! I cannot wait – I, I wavered back and forth about sharing, like, the, the specifics of what’s going to be in the box, but Katee definitely convinced me, like, you know, as – especially ‘cause there’s such a fair amount of backers, and –
Lucy: – it is fully funded? Like, why not?
Lucy: ‘Cause I like –
Katee: ‘Cause that gives people something to, like, specifically anticipate. Like, I think that there are, there is something to, like, it’s going to be a secret, like, that can play really well too, but, like –
Katee: – the knowing and, like, and then you share it, and the people are like, oh, that’s going to be in the box? I want that in my box!
Lucy: Yeah, yeah.
Katee: Like, give it to me. But I also am a chronic oversharer, and so Kickstarter worked really well with that, ‘cause I was like –
Katee: – oh, here’s another piece of art that I don’t have to hold onto! I can just give it to you!
Sarah: Show people. So obviously you’re working on –
Sarah: – distribution strategy, logistics, and fulfillment. What all, what other things are you working on right now? And what books would you like to tell people about?
Katee: I am working on another very self-indulgent indie series that’s monster romance that has, like, the old school romance clinch covers on them with a monster. That’s one thing that going indie’s been really good for me creatively, because I can just be like, I don’t know if anybody else wants this, but I want this, so I’m going to do this, and it turns out other people want it too.
Sarah: That is the rule of the internet: you are never the only person who is into this thing.
Lucy: That’s the beauty of the internet, yeah!
Sarah: It’s true!
Katee: So yeah, the first book just came out a couple weeks ago. It’s called The Dragon’s Bride; it is a, a dragon man and a human lady, and it’s, like, soft monster romance. Like, there’s some, like, marriage of convenience stuff, but it’s, it’s very soft. All tropes, tags, and content warnings are on my website, so check that out before and – [laughs].
Sarah: Fabulous! Lucy, what about you?
Lucy: Yeah. So I’m doing a fair amount of work on this Kickstarter.
Sarah: I would –
Sarah: I, I would never have guessed.
Lucy: But also, I am in the process of writing a couple of books. One is a, my very first speculative romance; it’s going to be a novella, and it’s being released as a project in collaboration with a bunch of other authors. I don’t know how much I’m allowed to say about it, but I’ll definitely be sharing, like, when I am allowed to?
I have been, I’m working on a throuple, a paranormal shifter throuple: two lions, one human lady. Everybody is waiting for this book. [Laughs]
Katee: I’m so excited: I did not know this existed, but I need it now. [Laughs]
Lucy: Yes. Yes. It’s in the Shifter Escapes series. It’s the best friend from the first book. It takes place in Hawaii. It’s, like, so soft; everybody loves everybody, and there’s lots of sex.
Just, I have some audiobooks coming up. My most popular book ever, Blind Date with a Book Boyfriend, I’m finally getting an audiobook for that, and that –
Lucy: – actually starts recording next month. It’s going to have the actual book, and it’s going to have the two accompanying short stories, because people apparently cannot get enough of this couple. They’re always like, well, what’s now? What’s happening now?
Sarah: Thank you so very much for doing this podcast and for being so candid and honest and, and really inspiring, and congratulations again to both of you!
Lucy: Oh, and also I want to say for anyone listening who was debating whether or not they should do ads on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books –
Sarah: Oh gosh.
Lucy: – you, you absolutely should. I have been doing ads with them for years, but I di-, I checked my Kickstarter stats, and yeah, it tells you, like, when somebody, somebody – what do you call it? – backs a project, like, where they came from, and yes, it works.
Sarah: Thank you!
Lucy: It, it has paid for itself!
Sarah: Oh gosh, I’m going to turn purple! Thank you very, very much!
Lucy: Yes. It works. So that’s another part of the Kickstarter strategy: do ads, but, like, you know –
Sarah: In specific romance-centered communities, yeah. Absolutely.
Lucy: Yes, absolutely!
Sarah: I mean, I know they work, but I’m really honored that you said that; thank you.
Lucy: Like, who would want this? Yes, Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, absolutely. It’s like, Books: it’s in the name.
Sarah: Does what it says on the tin.
Sarah: And that brings us to the end of this week’s episode. Thank you again to Lucy Eden and Katee Robert for hanging out with me. I will link to Lucy’s Kickstarter in the show notes. There is still time to take a look at everything and make a pledge for yourself if you’re interested. I will also link to their websites and to all of the books we talked about as well, never fear.
But I am curious: have you backed a romance Kickstarter before? Which ones were your favorite? Have you done the thing where you back a Kickstarter and then something cool shows up and you’re like, oh, I forgot I had backed this! I would love to hear about it! You can email me at [email protected], or you can leave me a message at 1-201-371-3272. And if you want to tell me a bad joke, you know I love to hear those too.
Speaking of, I would never leave you without a terrible joke. It’s coming up right now. This joke is from a nine-year-old, which means it’s the very best kind of joke.
Why didn’t the worms on Noah’s ark stay in their apple when they got on board?
Give up? Why didn’t the worms on Noah’s ark stay in their apple when they got on board?
‘Cause God said everyone had to travel in pears.
[Laughs] I se- – I can hear you groaning! I sent that to Adam, and he just responded, boo! Pears!
On behalf of everyone here, we wish you the very best of reading. Have a wonderful weekend, and we will be back here next week!
Smart Podcast, Trashy Books is part of the Frolic Podcast Network. You can find more outstanding podcasts to subscribe to at frolic.media/podcasts.
This podcast transcript was handcrafted with meticulous skill by Garlic Knitter. Many thanks.