Remember when you fell prey to the slogan, “All you need is a dollar and a dream”? When buying Lottery tickets was the only way those dreams had a chance of being realized? Well lucky for us we live in a world where if you have a dream, all you really need is your friends, family and some strangers to fund it for you. ♥
The advent of such utter brilliance as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Get Funded Now, Crowdfunder and so many more has awoken those dreams to make them a reality. And it doesn’t really matter what that dream is. There are niche focused crowd funders like Quirky if you are an inventor or Appbackr if you have the next great app design. If you have an idea, almost any idea, and you think you can get people on board to support you, there is a better than Lottery chance of that happening.
I have been somewhat transfixed on the myriad of wonderful ideas out there. And I wish I were wealthy enough to fund more of them. So until I actually DO win the lottery, I have to be discerning with my pittance and place my money where my heart says to.
That being said, in the last couple of months I have stumbled upon 2 such Crowdfunding endeavors. Both films and both having literally nothing else in common. Now were you to go to a site such as Kickstarter and go to “Discover Projects”, you could lose a good week in sorting through them all. And that is just on ONE site. Even if you were to narrow it down to Film and Video, you would—at last look—have 35,922 projects to choose from—just on Kickstarter. Scouring through them, albeit fun and interesting, is–time wise–on the lengthy side. In the case of both of my recent pledges, my other addiction—twitter—came into play. A film titled Night of the Living Deb, for somewhat obvious reasons if you know me, struck a chord immediately. I mean… I NEEDED TO BE IN ON THIS, almost before I watched the Kickstarter video–WHICH IS GREAT. I suppose I have a soft spot for the RomComZom—Romantic Comedy Zombie flicks. (Who doesn’t?) I became twibsessed (twitter obsessed), following hashtag after hashtag, finding the names of the principals involved. I followed Kyle Rankin—the director-immediately.
VIEW KICKSTARTER VIDEO HERE
After watching, it just made my commitment to this project a virtual imperative. So much of the brilliance of a successful campaign lays in the details and the video was just the beginning. I started googling away to all those involved. Smart, talented, visionary types that made my pledge a joy far more gratifying than just handing over my $12 to $16 in a theater. I was now a part of something pretty special from the ground UP.
The use of social media is paramount in a successful campaign. If done properly, as I think getting MY attention attests to, it truly speaks volumes to what the present and future artists and dreamers can accomplish. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube, Vevo and even UStream can be what makes a dream a reality. Every social media available needs to be harnessed and then just let the viral world take over.
My other film pledge was to a documentary directed by Mark Marshall. Yes, this is a different direction for me, but showing my immense diversity. Again, I stumbled upon it by a tweet. It was @SeanAstin who made me take note of a historical event swept under the rug since The Civil War. THE greatest maritime disaster in our history for lives lost. I will admit that my knowledge of American History may not get me a spot on Jeopardy, but I thought I had a pretty good grasp of it. SO, when even those who are much smarter than me do not have bells going off at the name The Sultana, then something is clearly amiss. Again, I watched the kickstarter video and again I was moved to make a pledge. As a society we must embrace our history—good or bad—and honor those whose lives were lost. Sean Astin went that extra mile for this project.
VIEW KICKSTARTER VIDEO HERE
He took to Vox Populi Radio and Ustream for a staggering 17 hour ON AIR readathon from the banks of the Mississippi, of Jerry O. Potter’s book, The Sultana Tragedy. His passion for getting this documentary made was inspiring. I watched late into the night as he got a little punchy but still reading surprisingly well!
However it is done, and by whomever, the crowdfunding concept is clearly a monumental shift in how idea’s become reality—how concepts become concrete—and how anyone can change the world. Even if I never have a single project worthy idea, it is comforting to know I can support someone who does.
I am very much looking forward to both of these amazing Kickstarters and I am sincerely proud to be a part of them. For those of you who have never taken a peek at the bazillions of ideas in need of funding, I will warn you now: There are a LOT of smart, talented and creative people out there, and you are going to wish you could fund more of them. I know I do.