Authors Can You Get 1,000 True Fans?

Posted on March 13, 2008

Here is an interesting concept from Kevin Kelly that authors might want to take a look at. It is called 1,000 true fans. The idea is to build a base of 1,000 true fans who will buy anything an artists create. For an author that might be any book the author gets published or self-publishes. If an author had 1,000 true fans presumably the author would be able to make a living off of his or her writing.

1000 True Fans

Kelly describes a true fan as being very devoted. He says they "will purchase anything and everything you produce." He says they will do things like set a Google Alert for your name, come to your book signings and even buy t-shirts, mugs and hats.

Kelly says, "Assume conservatively that your True Fans will each spend one day's wages per year in support of what you do. That 'one-day-wage' is an average, because of course your truest fans will spend a lot more than that. Let's peg that per diem each True Fan spends at $100 per year. If you have 1,000 fans that sums up to $100,000 per year, which minus some modest expenses, is a living for most folks..."

As we all all know an author does not get all of the $100 that his true fan spends annually. There are expenses depending on how the book is published. Problems also arise with the 1,000 true fans concept when you start trying to measure true fans. They sound like something that would be difficult to quantify. However, if you had 1,000 of these devoted people waiting for each book you release it would certainly be a good thing. It something to think about if you want to be a full-time author.