Author Monique Roffey has launched a Crowdfunder campaign to help finance the PR campaign for her next novel.
The Mermaid of Black Conch, which tells the story of a mermaid snatched from the sea near the island of Black Conch, will be published in Spring 2020 by Peepal Tree.
At the time of writing, Roffey has raised £2,455 of her £3,000 target and it is believed this campaign is the first of its kind by an author. The money raised will go towards hiring a specialist PR agency to run a creative campaign across print, digital and broadcast media.
Roffey said: “This is my seventh book and maybe even my best. Writers are famously introverted creatures and so many would baulk crowdfunding a publicity campaign, but I hope this might inspire them to try. Publicity is such an important part of any book campaign, but I know so many writers who feel disappointed by the level of attention their books receive, even writers with big publishers. I want to get behind my book 100% next year and prove that great books do come out of the independent publishing sector and that they deserve to be seen and read.”
Leeds-based Peepal Tree is backing the Crowdfunder. Operations manager Hannah Bannister said: "We're thrilled to support Monique's imaginative crowdfunder. As a small Arts Council funded indie, based in the North we can struggle to command reviewers' attention, and this campaign is certainly succeeding in finding new friends for our mermaid - the more power to spreading the word about this wonderful book the better!"
In return for pledges the Crowdfunder offers rewards including signed copies of the book, A3 posters, tote bags, editorial feedback for aspiring writers from Roffey, and a unique pop up event of workshopping and Caribbean food hosted by Roffey at her home.
The author of five previous novels, and one memoir, Roffey has previously won the OCM BOCAS Award for Caribbean Literature, and has been shortlisted for the Orange Prize, the Costa Prize, the Encore Award and the Orion Award. She has sold 62,340 books through Nielsen, with 2010's The White Woman on the Green Bicycle (Simon & Schuster UK), which sold 47,540 copies in paperback, her bestseller. She is also a lecturer at the Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University and a tutor at the National Centre for Writing.