Boneshaker author asks Kickstarter fans to fund novella

Kate Milford, author of the wonderful YA novel Boneshaker, sez, "This is the link to my Kickstarter campaign, in which I'm raising funds to self-publish a novella companion to my second traditionally-published YA fantasy, The Broken Lands. This is the first installment in what I hope will be an ongoing project with two goals: to combine traditional and self-publishing by releasing companion content alongside my hardcover books; and to use indie bookstore-friendly resources for the self-pub end of things. The first novella, The Kairos Mechanism, also acts as a bridge between the stories told in The Broken Lands and my first book, The Boneshaker. It will be released in three editions: paperback (via McNally Jackson's self-pub services and Espresso Book Machine); digital (via Google Play); and a Super-Special Digital edition, free or pay-what-you-like, which will be illustrated by young reader artists. The funds raised will finance the costs of publication as well as paying the young artists."


  1. The name of the novella is question is “The Boneshaker.” As the linked-to article makes clear.

    For a moment there I was wondering why Cherie Priest had changed her name.

    1. The Novella that is part of the kickstarter project is named “The Kairos Mechanism” which is meant to be a stand-alone companion piece to her traditionally published novel coming out this fall titled “The Broken Lands” 

      Kate wrote a book called The Boneshaker that was also covered here on Boing Boing.  The whole confusion was covered before:

      Kate and Cherie are friends, IRL.

    2. That was also confusing to me. I had to click the the source link to understand that “Boneshaker” and “The Boneshaker” are two different books by two different authors. It made the Boing Boing article really confusing to me as a fan of Cherie Priest who’s never heard of Kate Milford.

  2. I was equally confused by the same name novel written by Cherie Priest and wondering why the hell there was a Kickstarter for some other author.

  3. Covered on Boing Boing before, as someone who participated in the crowdfunding of Diane Duane’s THE BIG MEOW, I’d caution people against donating.  Duane’s fans fully funded THE BIG MEOW only to wait SIX YEARS before Duane finally lived up to her end of the bargain and completed the book.  Fully funding a book is a wonderful thing for an author, as they get not only an ‘advance’ but full payment prior to writing, but it’s not so wonderful for people on the other end of the contract, as the author then has no motivation other than their honor to keep to a schedule that can ever morph and extend.

    1. I’ve often wondered this about Kickstarter. What’s to keep the creator to their end of the bargain? I’ve looked at the guidelines on the site and it seems kind of vague.

    2. As the author’s Husband I’d encourage people to donate, as I have read the completed manuscript and can verify she is highly motivated to get it out into the world.   You will have no problems from Kate getting a copy.

    3. So your comment seems to boil down to advising people to never participate in crowdfunding because the end product may be late or even not appear at all, which would seem to be a slap in the face to every crowdfunded project that has delivered what and when it said it would.

  4. Not to badmouth the idea, but I’m confused why you’d Kickstart this? I thought Kickstarter was generally used to get the funds necessary to make something that requires a larger initial investment. Like if I wanted to get money for water-powered computers or something, Kickstarter would give me the opportunity to raise the capital necessary to get such an idea going. I know that some collaborative projects have been Kickstarted, but that seemed more to allow the Kickstarter/project organizer to guarantee the artists (the examples I know being comics) pay in advance before getting them to put a bunch of work into it.

    With a book, there’s no capital necessary to create the item, and if Nathan Milford is to be believed, the book’s already done. Why not just use Amazon’s self-publishing services, if you can’t get a traditional publisher to back it? Why is money necessary in advance? (Though the threshold number is only 6500, so it’s not like it’s crazy high) 

    1. Hi, Bladerunner. Actually, there are tons (TONS) of very small projects on Kickstarter, even as low as a couple hundred bucks. 

      The money I’m raising (this is outlined in the project info, by the way) is being used not for the digital editions, but to design and print 300 paperback copies via an independent bookstore’s Espresso Book Machine. This is more expensive, but I like where the money’s going. Also, I’m paying the young artists (12 of them) who are illustrating one of the digital editions. That edition is going to be free or pay-as-you-like, because I want their friends and family to be able to see their work without having to pay me for it.

      The biggest reason I chose to fund it this way is that I want to use resources that are independent bookstore-friendly, so I’m not using any Amazon self-publishing services at all; they get a cut from Kickstarter for handling the money, but that’s all they get from me.  

      Happy to clarify further or answer any other questions folks have. I’m really proud of this project. 

      (edited to put the most relevant info to answer you at top of reply–k)

  5.  I absolutely loved reading Milford’s, The Boneshaker.  It was a delight.  I look forward to her future endeavors.

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