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Fantasy author’s surprise new book series sets Kickstarter record

<i>Marta Perez/EPA/Shutterstock</i><br/>Brandon Sanderson
Marta Perez/EPA/Shutterstock
Marta Perez/EPA/Shutterstock
Brandon Sanderson

By Frank Pallotta, CNN Business

Brandon Sanderson, the prolific fantasy author, broke the record for the most-funded Kickstarter recipient by bringing in more than $20.3 million on the platform since March 1.

Sanderson created the Cosmere universe in which multiple stories like the “Mistborn” series take place. He originally sought $1 million in 30 days for the project, which includes four new books. Sanderson had written them in secret over the last two years.

He hit that $1 million target in just under 35 minutes.

Sanderson is no neophyte author. He is self-publishing the new books and has written multiple other novels, many of them self-published, too. He co-authored “Wheel of Time,” which has since become an Amazon Prime Video TV series. His has his own book company, DragonSteel Entertainment, and he’s been on The New York Times best-seller list 15 times, according to his website.

After Sanderson hit that first million dollars, he went on to set the record for the most money raised in 24 hours, notching $15.4 million — more than double the previous record, according to the platform.

Sanderson’s book proposal broke the overall Kickstarter record set by the Pebble Time smartwatch in 2015, which brought in $20.3 million from 78,471 backers. Kickstarter also said that at one point Sanderson’s project was bringing in $20,000 per minute, and it set a new record for the most funding and most backers in its first 24 hours.

The project currently has more than 84,000 backers, and could bring in even more since it still has 27 days left to run.

What do these backers get for their investment? There are different pricing tiers that start at $40, which gives them quarterly e-books, and goes up to $500, which provides the author’s books throughout the year on all formats as well as other goods like apparel.

Sanderson said on the Kickstarter site that the books’ are expected to be delivered next year.

“Our goal is to deliver these to you all through 2023, along with — for those who want it — a swag box of cool items relating to one of my already established worlds or concepts,” he wrote on Kickstarter. “So please, join us for a Year of Sanderson and experience for yourself the secret I’ve been keeping these last few years.”

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