Especially in a country run by Donald Trump’s administration, I think poetry and art are more important now than ever. Unfortunately the truth of the matter is that artists need money to survive and to continue creating art. I hope that Ghost City can help poets do that.
We wanted to find out what people actually want to pay for a book of poems. If it’s a book by their favorite author, maybe they would pay $15-$20 for a paperback, plus shipping. If it’s a poet they’ve never heard of, we have a free PDF excerpt of the book they can download from the website. Maybe they like the poems from the sample and pay $10 for the book. Maybe they don’t have $10 to throw down, so they spend $5. Maybe they spend a penny and we lose a few bucks on that copy, but there it goes out into the world, sitting on someone’s coffee table. To me, that’s fine, I chalk it up as a marketing expense. If everyone paid a penny we’d lose a lot of money, sure, but not everyone is. Actually, we’re finding people pay along a wide spectrum. The average price being paid right now, with Noah Eli Gordon’s campaign, is about $13 a book, including shipping. Some people have paid $25 for the book, which is surprising and wonderful, and a great number have paid $18, which will be the cost once the promotion ends.