I’ve been doing the numbers for Centurion: Legionaries of Rome. While I want to keep the costs down, I also want to pay everyone that is going to be working on this, including myself. The costs associated with just the production of the product would be around $3000. That is definitely a doable target. I would have to add in percentages for the crowdfunding platform and payment services, both which could run upwards of 10%, so that means $3600.
This is all without printing books. That’s the rub. Adding on printing costs is going to also add on shipping costs. I’m looking into fulfillment services which might help alleviate some of that, but then the question becomes “how many books to print?” Honestly, at the numbers I’d be looking at (around 200 to 300), it’s going to end up being a digital/PoD service. One Book Shelf’s deal with Lightning Source makes that look tempting, and I have some idea of printing costs, as Centurion should end up about the same size as Sword Noir.
Looking at printing and shipping 250 books, then the cost of forward shipping them to various destinations, it looks like that would add on about $ 1250. That would put this attempt at around $ 5000.
This is what I have come back to each time I have done the numbers. $ 5,000 seems to be the number. I need to find out about fulfillment (or the backers would have to be really, really patient as I hand package and mail all those books) which is going to change the shipping costs and might increase (decrease? doubtful) the costs. This also impacts on reward levels. How much will I be charging for this when I release it? More number crunching involved there, and I really hate number crunching.
I think the basic reward level to get the full PDF and any extra from stretch goals is going to be $7, while it’s going to be $20 to get the printed version. That means when I sell these, the PDF will likely be $ 8.99 while the print will be $25. That’s a lot more than I charge for Sword Noir, even if one includes the shipping, but I have come to believe that is more because Sword Noir is priced too low than that everything else is priced too high.