The Backbone of Britain by Rob Evans & Chris Roberts (With Love Project)
Rolling Home by Calum Creasey & Lauren Smith (Stoked Ever Since)
Chosen by Nick Plant
Since launching in 2009, the crowdfunding platform, Kickstarter has seen $70m pledged to projects in the site’s publishing category with over 2000 titles successfully published last year. Established names like Unit Editions, McSweeney’s and even Random House are now using crowdfunding platforms to produce (or promote) titles.
According to Margot Atwell, Kickstarter’s publishing lead, it’s “a way to do something a little bit different than just making a book and selling it… these platforms give publishers the capacity to involve fans directly, and skip all the layers between the creator and the reader.”
That’s certainly the case with two projects I’ve recently “backed”. It’s no coincidence that both of these projects started as successful blogs that built the “fans” Atwell refers to before forming the ambitions of producing an actual book.
Rolling Home is a collection of beautiful images and envy inducing stories about a couple drifting around Europe in a VW campervan. It’s an inspiring insight into “alternative living”, space saving ingenuity and a demonstration that less (stuff) is often more.
The second comes from our Stevenson Square neighbours, With Love Project, who have recently published The Backbone of Britain. The book documents over 30 people “who produce things with a passion and a purpose”. These’s Welsh denim jeans, trainers made in Bolton and a craftsman still making knifes in Sheffield.
And, as you can see, a beautiful thing it is too. They’ve clearly produced their book with the same passion they sought from others. It features fantastic photography by Manchester photographer, Rob Evans encased in a lavish foil blocked, cloth bound hardback which is limited to just a 1000 copies. One for the bibliophiles!