Billtown Blue Lit is a fledgling organization serving the national community of writers and aspiring writers of literary fiction.
I want to get the Billtown Blue Lit ball rolling. This campaign is meant to raise the funds to start the primary project of Billtown Blue Lit, the readers series.
We want writers of literary fiction to come to Williamsport, PA to read us their work. This campaign will fund the stipends, travel, and food for the readers, the rewards for our donors, our staff & intern salaries, and our primary advertising campaigns with public radio and the Williamsport Sun-Gazette.
While this campaign is running, I will be working primarily to form a board, on foraging partnerships with the local library and book store to raise awareness of our first readers' books.
Here are 12 objectives of the project. Some of these are underway or in the research phase, but all of them need your help to come to fruition.
1. Bringing the writers to town will provide an opportunity for Blue Lit to contract with local hotels/B&Bs to board the writers. Blue Lit will ONLY feed the authors at local, independently owned eateries.
2. There will be an opportunity for folks in the community to hear these authors read their work, get exposed to new authors, and to meet them and ask questions at the reception and Q&A that will follow each event.
3. Blue Lit will work with The Pajama Factory (local artists' haven) to start a writer-in-residence program which will provide an opportunity for a writer to work on her stuff in a place that's designated to artists.
4. Blue Lit will host a writer's workshop (like the one Tin House does, that's what I've linked), and provide more culture to the community and commerce to the independently owned businesses in the town.
5. Blue Lit will consistently fundraise to provide a scholarship fund for deserving, gifted writers of single mothers.
6. Bule Lit will employ local college students as marketing interns, and eventually as office personnel.
8. Advertising is key. Blue Lit will run print and radio campaigins for each reading the 30 days prior.
9. Blue Lit will provide a stipend that's on the high end for visiting writers ($1,000), and we will allow the visitng author to sell her books at the event.
10. Blue Lit will work to give writers additional venues by launching an online literary journal, and contests that award cash prizes to new writers. (a la Glimmer Train)
11. Blue Lit will contract with local freelancers with whom I already have a working relationship to put together the marketing materials (brochure, flyers, website, etc). These will be printed at the local print shoppe.
12. Blue Lit will do a book group focusing on the most recent work of the visitng writer. This will generate hype, and will also raise funds.
Funds will be allocated in the following order:
1. Advertising: Web, Print, Radio
Web: We will pay to design and host the website $500
Buy the URL $10
Interns to run social media campaigns (see staff salary section)
Print: Daily ads for 60 days in the Williamsport Sun-Gazette will cost approximately $2000.
Flyers, Brochures, Business Cards, Posters, bookmarks: $500
Logo & Document Design $550 (reallocated to above as noted below based on the success of this campaign)
Radio: WVIA, local NPR station will cut us a sweet deal, giving us 140 spots over 8 weeks for $3500.
2. Paying, boarding, feeding readers & Hosting events
Stipend: $1000 per appearance
Travel Reimbursement: Up to $500 per reader
Food (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner): up to$70 per reader
Lodging: up to $200/night
x2 (two readers, two months) $3140
3. Staff Salaries
Interns, at least 2 $500/semester
Executive Director: $8000 (may be reallocated up to 50%)
These numbers are based on research & rates as listed via quotes, on vendors' websites, & rate cards.
If we only reach our tipping point,we will launch the website and blog. We will build awareness of our objectives by running a modified version (+/- half the print and air advertising) of our ad campaigns as listed above, hiring at least one intern, developing a free bookmark marketing campaign in the region, and some pod cast type programming like that which we will offer on a continuing basis. We will also solicit current, literary writers for guest posts and short stories or excerpts on our blog, and leverage influence in social media. These efforts will position us to grow the organization.
If we make it to approx $16K, we will host two events, do a more involved, but not full, version of our marketing campaign, and continue to use the current logo, and the Executive Director will do document design, The Executive Director's salary will be reallocated as necessary up to 50%.
If we reach our goal, we will be able to run two events, paying everyone as listed above, marketing as listed above, plus hire an attorney and/or accountant to help us file 501(c)3 and pay the IRS its 501(c)3 fee (around $1000 for an organization of this size)