Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, start all over again

Published February 28, 2015

The current crowdfunding campaign for ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions on Kickstarter will end tonight at 11.59pm CET. Although the pledges are still coming in - which I think is fantastic - the brutal truth is that unless 20 people, each with SEK 50,000 to spare (SEK 50,000 being the maximum amount each individual backer is allowed to pledge), should magically reappear before the campaign ends, it will not reach its goal.

But as I made clear in yesterday's blog, I haven't given up on the project. I'm already gearing up for a second crowdfunding campaign, in which I plan to offer an e-book version plus at least one of two possible print versions (perhaps both).

If you haven't already taken my second survey, asking you to name which of three alternatives you'd be most likely to buy (e-book, paperback or hardback), please take the survey here. Many thanks in advance - the results will help me prepare for a crowdfunding campaign that has a better chance of actually succeeding.

My motto here is: "Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, start all over again." Which gives me an excellent excuse to post this Youtube link to a song from my favourite Fred & Ginger movie, Swing Time. (The fabulous dance number that follows the song in the film is not included in the clip, but it can be viewed here.)

 

Second and final survey: Which version of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions would you prefer?

Published February 27, 2015

The first attempt at crowdfunding for the revised, updated and expanded version of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions will finish tomorrow and it's pretty obvious that it won't reach its goal. Well, I'm not one to give up at the first setback, so let's have another go at this, just do it a little differently this time.

I've defined three different versions of the book, which I hope and believe will come closest to satisfying the various desires and budgets of those interested in the book: 1) an e-book, 2) a black and white paperback and 3) a full-colour hardback (as originally presented in the first campaign). Now all I need is an indication of which version of the book you would prefer. Read on if you want more details before you take the survey, or go straight to the survey here.

WHY ARE YOU RUNNING A SECOND CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN?
The first crowdfunding campaign for ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions gave me a good indication of roughly how many people would be interested in pre-ordering the new version of the book. I had calculated at somewhere around 2,000 people; it turned out to be about 700. My thinking here is: if 700 people were actually willing and able to make this book a reality I shouldn't reward them by just giving up. Plus I'm really eager to research and write the book, so I feel strongly that it's worth giving it another go.

WHY HAVE YOU ADDED AN E-BOOK VERSION TO THE LIST OF OPTIONS?
The first crowdfunding campaign was based on the assumption that the book would be a kind of collector's item that would appeal to at least 2,000 pre-ordering-inclined ABBA fans. This proved not to be the case. One of the more obvious reasons was that many were unable to afford the book. But with an e-book alternative, at a lower cost than the printed versions, more people will now be able to pre-order, which in turn means that the campaign is more likely to succeed. I've just run a survey which, at the time of writing, has received 870 replies. The results show that 2/3 of those who took the survey would prefer an e-book over no book at all.

IN THE SURVEY THE PRICES FOR THE PHYSICAL BOOK ARE HIGHER THAN BEFORE. WHY IS THAT?
It's all because of the printing costs. The main costs when printing a book are at "ground level", as it were. In other words, the initial costs are high. This means that the fewer copies you print, the higher the cost of each individual copy, and based on the first campaign it seems I can't count on more than perhaps 600 or 700 copies of the physical book being pre-ordered. I'm offering these printed versions as an option for those who really want a physical book - and I know there are many of you out there! At the moment it looks likely the physical version of the updated, revised and expanded edition of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions will really become a collector's item...

THE FIRST CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN FEATURED A BONUS CD AND A PERSONALISED PAGE AS "EXTRAS". WILL THEY BE OFFERED IN THE SECOND CAMPAIGN AS WELL?
I don't know yet. I hope the survey will give me some indication of exactly how strong interest in the book is as we approach the second and final crowdfunding campaign. This will also give me an indication whether the extras will be a viable proposition this time.

THANKS FOR READING!
Thanks for reading - now please take the survey! Your answers are of course completely anonymous and you are not committing to anything. The survey will simply help me get a view of roughly how many people are interested in the different versions of the book. Thank you in advance!

The survey is here.

 

Is an e-book the next step for ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions?

Published February 23, 2015

At the end of this blog, there is a link to a survey. Please take the survey, it's very simple: only a "yes" or "no" is required. Thanks!
________________________


THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

It's now less than a week before the Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for the updated, revised and expanded version of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions ends. With only 39% of the required funds raised at the time of writing, I think it's safe to say that unless a miracle happens, the crowdfunding campaign will not reach its goal. And when a Kickstarter campaign doesn't reach its goal, the project will not receive any money at all.

However, I want to focus on the positive aspects. I'm hereby extending a warm and grateful thanks to everyone who was able to contribute to the campaign, and, naturally, also to those who would have liked to contribute but were prevented to do so for one reason or another. Your support and enthusiasm for the project has been truly heartwarming to experience. I would also like to thank everyone who has made huge efforts in order to try to spread the word about the campaign - your contribution has not gone unnoticed.

E-BOOK VERSION
During the course of the crowdfunding campaign, some ideas for funding the project that I hadn't even thought of have emerged, and I am now considering various ways of moving forward. If there's enough fan support for it, there's one option that would be easier to do than any of the others. I'm considering publishing the updated edition of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions as an e-book only. It would still be nicely designed, as you've seen in the excerpts posted here on the site, it's just that the book would only be available in an electronic format.

There are many advantages of doing an e-book: for instance, it will be "weightless", thus requiring no mailing costs. Another advantage is that the book would be finished the moment the design is completed (I'm still aiming for sometime in 2016) - there would be no period of waiting while the book is printed. It would also be distributed to you, the reader, in a second: at the click of a button you would have it downloaded to your computer or reading device, for instant reading.

TAKE THE E-BOOK SURVEY!
The question now is whether there are enough ABBA fans out there who would be interested in an e-book version. I've put together a very basic survey, which simply asks if you would be interested in a nicely designed, full-colour e-book version of the book at a certain price. The survey is really uncomplicated: you are only required to answer "yes" or "no". Your answer will of course be completely anonymous.

Please note: At this stage I have not decided to do an e-book only, this is just to find out what kind of interest there would be for an e-book if there was no possible way to do a print version.

Many thanks in advance for taking the survey - and, as always, please spread the word about it!

The survey is here.

 

Researching, researching...

Published February 10, 2015

Crowdfunding for the updated, revised and expanded edition of ABBA - The Complete Recording sessions is still ongoing. The campaign ends on 28 February, so the clock is ticking. If you want this book to become a reality, please support the campaign - if it fails I won't have the resources to research, write, print and ship the book. Pre-order your copy here: http://kck.st/15Sb0XK

I'm currently in London, where I've attended an event hosted by the Facebook group ABBAtalk, promoting the book project. Otherwise, I'm spending my days here at the British Library. While the essential core of the updated version of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions remains ABBA's work - the writing and recording of their songs - one of the ways I want to expand the scope of the book is to add some insight on how the finished records were marketed and promoted by local record companies. I have a few interviews lined up on that subject as well; I'm convinced there are some really interesting stories there that will be new to most of us, and that will shed light on the ups and downs of ABBA's recording career.

I also want to find out what kind of reviews the music papers/magazines gave ABBA's records at the time. It's all very exciting stuff, and it will provide a kind of backdrop to the main subject of the book: ABBA's music.

If you haven't pre-ordered the book yet, now is the time. Remember, all prices include shipping to either the UK, Europe or Rest of World, and there are things such as a bonus CD and personalised page with your name on it to choose as extras. Pre-order here: http://kck.st/15Sb0XK

Keep on spreading the word about the Kickstarter campaign - your support matters!

 

Four essential points about ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions

Published February 02, 2015

ABBA - THE COMPLETE RECORDING SESSIONS
A few points about the crowdfunding campaign

The crowdfunding campaign for the updated edition of ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions is still ongoing and there's still a long way to go before the goal has been reached. To pre-order your copy and for more info about the book, go here: http://kck.st/15Sb0XK

While I have your attention, I thought I'd address 4 issues that may be helpful in deciding to pre-order the book.

1. YOU ARE NOT RISKING ANYTHING BY SUPPORTING THE CAMPAIGN.

By making your pledge and choosing a reward level, you will be pre-ordering a copy of the finished book. BUT: Money will be only withdrawn from your credit card if the crowdfunding campaign reaches its goal. It's win-win for everyone, and you are not risking anything - your hard-earned cash won't be sucked into a black hole.

2. IT'S NOW OR NEVER.

If you're eager to read a book that will let you know so much more about ABBA's music and recordings, your support is essential. A crowdfunding campaign is the only way to make this project become a reality. If the campaign fails, I won't have the resources to write, print and ship the book.

3. THE BOOK WILL PROBABLY NOT BE AVAILABLE IN REGULAR BOOK SHOPS.

At this point, I have no plans beyond publishing this "limited first edition" of the book. In this case, "limited" means that this nicely produced hardback version will only be printed once, based on the pre-orders. Also, it's highly unlikely you will be able to buy it in regular book shops or from online outlets such as Amazon. So if you really want the book, it's now or never.

4. THIS IS NOT A "GET RICH QUICK" SCHEME.

Most of the budget is set aside for making this a very nice book (nicely printed, full colour etc.) and to ship the book to those who have pre-ordered it. The funds I have set aside for myself is just enough to be able to keep me afloat while I'm doing the very time-consuming work on this 400-500 page book. The project is driven by passion, not by greed.

Thanks for reading - and many thanks in advance for your support!

More essential questions answered here.

Pre-order your book here: http://kck.st/15Sb0XK