At last I am able to reveal the BIG NEWS I’ve been alluding to regarding the publication of my next picture book. I will be crowdfunding the illustration, production, design and first run printing through Kickstarter.

Furthermore, I am inviting my fellow writers to come along with me in this journey. I know many of you are interested in crowdfunding but aren’t sure where to start, what the benefits and risks are, or how to set up a campaign for success.

As part of my role as the “Field Guide to 21st Century Publishing” for Children’s Book Insider, I am putting my own rear on the line so you don’t have to. Follow along as I share successes, failures, decisions, and outcomes. And at the end of this journey, whether I succeed or fail, the entire experience, in collaboration with CBI, will be consolidated into some type of “How To” guide to crowdfunding for children’s authors.

Watch this short video for all the details (cliff notes version below), and be sure to come back every day this week as I continue the Why Crowdfund? series. Oh, and WISH ME LUCK!! πŸ™‚

Cliff Notes version for folks who can’t/won’t watch the video

  • I am crowdfunding the initial production and printing of my next picture book.
  • This is NOT a self-publishing project, but rather a HYBRID publishing project. The video explains this in more detail, but essentially, although I put the team together, I had an agent help me with the contracts, and I have a publisher for the book.
  • The personal reason I decided to experiment with crowdfunding for this particular book is because, although I believe it is a beautiful book and will resonate with many readers, it is probably a tough sell in NYC right now. The video explains in more detail.
  • The professional reason I decided to run this crowdfunding experiment was to do something unique, exciting, and beneficial to other writers as part of my role as the “Field Guide to 21st Century Publishing” for CBI.
  • Will I succeed? Will I fail? Come along for the journey and see for yourself!

Be sure to come back each day this week as I take on Why Crowdfunding Parts II – V. Here are the list of topics.

Tuesday, Why Crowdfunding Part II: Creative Control

Wednesday, Why Crowdfunding Part III: Experiment with New Publishing Models, Teach and Share with Fellow Writers

Thursday, Why Crowdfunding Part IV: Timing

Friday, Why Crowdfunding Part V: Demonstrating Demand PRIOR TO Publication

Have questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer them. Hope you’ll join me for this crazy adventure!

Categories: Agents, Children's Books, Creativity, Picture Books · Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,



  1. Wishing you lots of success, Julie! I’ll be here cheering you on from the sidelines — and learning right along with you.


    Very exciting, Julie – I’ll be listening along!

  3. Hey Julie, I’ll be paying close attention, pal. *grabs pompoms* To your success! *clink*

  4. Best wishes, Julie! Wishing you all the success in the world.

  5. Good luck Julie, fingers crossed! πŸ™‚

  6. Excited to see this project. Good luck!

  7. Wow! You are a pioneer Julie. Best of luck.

  8. This is such a great idea. Thank you so much for sharing this adventure with us.

  9. Good luck, Julie! I have a book that is going to be a hard sell right now too (it’s not very traditional), but I love, love, love it and I know I will eventually be self-publishing it, which will include paying for an illustrator – which means I will probably be crowdfunding. I’ve been reading up loads on the topic, so I am looking forward to watching you through this endeavor. πŸ™‚

  10. Crossing everything but my eyes for you, Julie…I kinda need them for reading the rest of your posts…;~)

    Donna L Martin

  11. Way to bravely walk into the unknown, Julie! I’ll enjoy following your adventure.

  12. Interesting! Unexpected! But if there’s anyone who can succeed at such a venture, I’m sure it’s you, Julie! Can’t wait to see what comes next.

  13. That sounds very brave, Julie. You are our adventurous mascot. Lead the way!

  14. Can’t wait to hear about your journey along the way! Thanks for testing it for the rest of us! πŸ™‚

  15. I admire your passion and drive, Julie. I have confidence that you will succeed. I would have loved to join you in this endeavor, but it is not my season yet. Have fun on your journey!

  16. Best of luck, Julie. If anybody can pull this off, you can. you’re a mad go getter!

  17. I’ve always been in awe of those pioneers who crossed the country in covered wagons or the oceans in little wooden ships. You, Julie, are just like them…traversing uncharted territories in children’s publishing, GPS-less.:) Thank you for sharing…I look forward to following your journey…and learning how-to.:)

    • I WISH there was a GPS for this one Vivian. Or at least a crystal ball so I could see into the future so it was less scary. But no matter what, it’s exciting and rewarding!

  18. Good luck, Julie! I’ll be eagerly following your posts. :0)

  19. You are a true trailblazer, Julie! Best of luck on your exciting adventure! I have no doubt it will be a huge success!

  20. There’s always something interesting percolating hereβ€”good luck!

  21. This will be quite a journey! I admire your courage and willingness to plunge into the deep on this adventure, and especially how you’ve thought it out in a way that this 12×12 community will benefit from. Fearless leader, charge on! (I’m cowering behind you! πŸ™‚ )

  22. This is so cool. I love that you’re doing this, Julie! You’re such a groundbreaker. Also breaking ground for the rest of us so we don’t have to. I just supported Jed Alexander’s MOSTLY WORDLESS pb fundraiser on Kickstarter (which went over goal). It’s definitely a thing that can happen! When does it start?

    • Thanks Julie! Right now I’m aiming for a launch date of Nov. 4 for the funding campaign, but there is so much work to be done between now and then, so we’ll see.

  23. Wishing you much success! I’m learning how difficult it can be writing children books and plan to “learn” something from you.

  24. Kathy Cornell Berman

    Good luck Julie. Sounds like a terrific challenge. Glad you are plunging right into it. Looking forward to hearing all about it.

  25. You certainly are a pioneer in so many ways. I always enjoy your creative ideas. I never heard the the term Crowdfunding before. Wish you the best.

  26. Look at LUCY AND THE ANVIL on Kickstarter. They had a hugely successful campaign, and their book is gorgeous.

    And! Can you embed these videos in email? Your posts come right to my email, and it would be awesome to click right in there instead of remembering to come back to the browser. Brainfarts, busy-crazy, just getting plain old OLD. You know. Love to you!

    • I WILL look it up. I need any and all examples of successful campaigns. And Carter, you know I love you too but I don’t know how to embed the video into the emails and, sorry but it’s not going to jump up on the priority list. πŸ™‚ But BIG hugs and thank you for making it over here!!!

  27. Best wishes Julie! How fun is it to embark on the new adventure!

  28. Good luck, Ms. Hedlund! πŸ˜€

  29. So excited to see you are doing this. I’ll be cheering for you and look forward to learning from your experience. Best of luck!

  30. John Spanoudakis

    Julie, my best, heart-felt wishes for a very successful crowd-funding adventure !

  31. Most of success to you Julie, don’t feel daunted just go on, anything new may seem scary, uncertain but it’s ajourney full of surprises, any kind of writer has to dare , no matter what, I wish the best to ocme for your book and that your experience will benefit many writers to be. Agathi Rodi, Patras -Greece.

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