2018 Charity Drive – Final Totals

Yesterday was the final day of our efforts to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. This was the third year I’ve done something like this, as well as the first year that I’ve received some help from other folks looking to also raise money for this great cause.

After tallying the totals from all of our sales, comments, podcast downloads, and new Patreon pledges, I can proudly announce that we raised $220.50 for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Donations from the various folks will be made to the AFSP tonight or tomorrow (depending on what time zone those folks are in).

I would like to take a moment and thank a ton of people for all of the help they were in raising money. First and foremost, a big thank you is owed to Eve Jacob, Rebecca MacCeile, Brian Fisher, Mike Lampasone, and Tim Kilkenny for their willingness to give donations based off of proceeds from their work. Without their help, this drive wouldn’t have been possible. If you’d like to give some patronage to them — such as by buying their books or listening to their podcasts — even though the drive is over, click the links on their names in the previous sentence.

I’d also like to thank some folks who helped advertise the drive heavily. In particular, thanks are owed to Tabitha, the crew at Sounds Nerdy, Stephanie, Cherie, Charlotte, Erin, and Kaytie for their repeated sharing of content. Additional thanks are due to David, Dem, Dr. Skyskull, TravelerSan, Megan, Joseph, Emmy, Doc, Biv, Mike, Lauren, Todd, Amy, Victoria, Vic, Justin, Casey, and several more people I’m sure I’m missing who also helped share the word in some way. None of this would be possible without all your help.

If you’d like to give to the AFSP directly, I would encourage you to do so. Click the link in this sentence to be taken directly to the AFSP’s donation page.

2018 Book Charity Drive…and Then Some

I don’t talk about my first book much anymore. It’s not that I don’t like my book — I’m still quite proud of it, in fact. Even though the book is reviewed well on Goodreads and on Amazon, there’s still plenty I could have done better in the book. Hell, I wrote an entire post talking about what I’d change in various stories if I had a chance to re-write the book on the one year anniversary of my book’s publishing.

One thing I wouldn’t change, however, is that I’ve used the proceeds from my book as a way to raise some money for charity. In 2016, I raised money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, while last year I raised money for UNICEF. As you might imagine from the title of this post, I’ll be doing the same thing this year, only with an added twist that I’ll get to in a bit.

Let’s start with the basics. If you buy a copy of my book, An Epilogue to Innocence, between now (November 19, 2018) and Christmas, all proceeds from your purchase will go to charity. I’ve chosen to put all proceeds to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, just as I did in 2016. I made the active choice to go with UNICEF last year, and though I don’t regret that choice in the slightest, I feel that the work the AFSP does is incredibly valuable.

I’ll do an update post at some point in the drive to give you all insight as to how the drive is going. I likely won’t do weekly posts like I did in 2016 (as I just don’t have time for it this year), however I will make sure to give some updates as to how things are going. For those unaware, CreateSpace and Amazon merged this year, so unlike previous years were there was a preferred link to buy my book, that isn’t the case this year.

Additionally, all pledges to my Patreon for the months of November and December 2018 will also be donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. This won’t just the the amount I get at the end1As Patreon takes a small cut of pledges., it’ll be the whole pledge made. I’d like to do something additional as a thank you to patrons who pledge during those months, so if you have any ideas, share those in the comments. If you don’t already support me on Patreon, click the button below and start doing so. I’d love to see you stick around past December 2018, however if you want to just pledge to me when I’m donating to charity to get the perks, that’s fine by me too.

And…rather unexpectedly since I initially wrote this post in early October, some other creators and authors have decided to also donate proceeds from their work, money based on viewer/listenership, or their time to help us out. A current list of those also taking part in this event can be found below.


Folks Helping With Marketing

Finally, if you see this post, anything you could do to spread the word would be immensely appreciated. I feel like part of why I saw such a drop off from the 2016 drive to the 2017 drive was the more limited word of mouth marketing I could do during that time. While I’ll be more active pushing the charity drive on social media this year, any help you all could provide would be greatly appreciated.

Quick Note: Charity Drive

In previous years, I’ve done a charity drive with funds from my book, An Epilogue to Innocence. I wanted to take a moment to share that there will be another charity drive this year. This year, all proceeds from my book will go to benefit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

I’ll be sharing more in the coming weeks. With that said, I wanted to mention it now, as there are other creators that will also be doing the same with their work this November/December. Some of them (like Rebecca) have already started talking about the drive, so I figured I should say something here. I’ll have a much longer post in mid-November formally kicking off the drive which will include links to all of the folks that will also be putting money to this great cause.

Charity Drive – Final Tally

It’s over officially now. As I mentioned in a few previous posts, I was holding a charity drive with the proceeds of my book, An Epilogue to Innocence. From November 1 through December 24, all proceeds from sales of the book would be going to benefit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. While I had to wait a little longer than I wanted to in order to announce the final totals — shipments of physical books bought on the 23rd and 24th didn’t register until the 27th — I do have a final total now.

Between physical copy sales and digital copy sales, we were able to raise $24.28 for the AFSP. Of that total, $22.22 came from purchase of physical book copies while the remaining $2.06 came from purchases of the Kindle version of the book. Admittedly this number was lower than I was hoping for, but it’s still something for a great cause. I made what was essentially a matching donation to go along with it, bringing the total donation made from this cause to $50.00.

I had gone into this endeavor with this grand idea that somehow we’d manage to raise over $100. I never shared that goal publicly, but secretly I was hoping to manage to get to that total independent of any matching donation I made. That said, the matching donation was going to happen regardless. If you’re asking people to purchase your product as part of a charity drive, it’s the least you can do.

To those of you who did buy An Epilogue to Innocence to help raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, thank you very much. Your kindness, your patronage, and your generosity is greatly appreciated. If you were just able to help spread the word in some way, be that about the book, the charity drive, of the AFSP itself, thank you too. If you did buy the book — be it as part of the charity drive or not — please go review the book on Goodreads or Amazon. I may well do something like this again in the future, so any positive reviews of the book if another charity drive happens would always be helpful.

Charity Drive Update – 43 Days Left

Now that we’re almost two weeks since the launch of my charity drive for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, I wanted to share a bit of an update of where things are so far. And where we are is not good. Or maybe it’s good? I’m not really sure.

If you aren’t familiar with the event[1], all proceeds from my debut book, An Epilogue to Innocence, from November 1st through December 24th will be donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (specifically, the Northern Ohio branch). Because I’m a self-published author, CreateSpace, Amazon, and Kindle all take their cut of the money from the sale, but I do get a bit of money with each book.

On the right side bar, you’ll notice that through November 11th, I’ve raised $9.98 for the AFSP. If I’m being optimistic, that means I’m on track to raise just shy of $50 for the AFSP. Which isn’t what I was hoping for, but it’s something. On the downside, I’m raising less than a dollar a day. Furthermore, that $9.98 raised represents three books sold. Three[2].

I’m honestly at a bit of a loss right now. I feel that the AFSP is an amazing cause. Their work is widely praised both by independent organizations and those in the know. I feel like my book is good. Reviews have been largely very good and even when there have been negative reviews, the majority of the bad reviews can be summed up as “good book, but not my cup of tea”. I’m sharing information about the drive, links to buy, and other info as often as I can. People have been helping me share the info — some of you very regularly — across multiple platforms, even ones I don’t have.

This begs the question in my mind: why? Why isn’t this going well. I never envisioned I’d be able to raise thousands of dollars for charity with this project. But honestly I’d love to be able to say I used my book to give hundreds of dollars to this cause. The AFSP deserves it. They do damn good work and we need them more than ever.

I’ve gone through more than one rough spell in terms of how I felt about my book’s sales. But this one hurts a bit more. Sure, sales are up slightly from October. That said, I literally wrote a post telling people not to buy my book that month. If sales weren’t up from then, we’d have a problem. If this was happening to money that was just going to me, I’d be annoyed, but I’d be understanding. When there’s a cause that’s bigger than myself — and bigger than all of us — in play…it leaves me scratching my head what else to do.

I’d love to hear ideas. If anyone has some ideas, please throw them out there in the comments.