[personal] Conceiving audacity, antipodeal edition

So I’m thinking about setting a very big pin in my life for 2012 or 2013. I want to do something interesting and audacious once I emerge from cancer.

The current more-or-less insane idea is to open up a Kickstarter account to fund me on a blogging and photography trip to Antarctica. This would also qualify as a research trip for an as-yet-unspecified future novel. If I did this, I would document every step of the preparation and travel.

I figure I’d need about $15,000 for travel and equipment, assuming a charter or cruise trip to the Antarctic peninsula, and possibly stops at a few other places including Tierra del Fuego or South Georgia. (That doesn’t actually include the cost of a better camera and lens kits, which would probably be to the point, but that’s several thousand more dollars right there most likely.) My social media footprint reaches about 10,000 people these days, so if I could get 10% participation and few generous anchor donors or sponsors, this could spread pretty widely.

It would give me something to aim for on the far side of the cancer fog, and it would be an unspeakably cool trip to make. I think I’d get some damned fine images and blogging out of it, maybe some nonfiction articles or other pieces, and a hell of an on-the-ground basis for a future book.

Question is, is there enough support for this? And do I really want to do it?

Your thoughts?

9 thoughts on “[personal] Conceiving audacity, antipodeal edition

  1. Anastasia says:

    So, there’s one thing I don’t like about Kickstarter (and bear in mind, I LOVE everything about crowd-funding). Oddly enough, I posted about this on my LJ just yesterday.

    The one thing I don’t particularly care for about Kickstarter is the “all or nothing” of it. If you miss the goal by $1, you get nothing. Which… I don’t know, seems strange to me. If people were willing to give you $1,800 for a project and your goal was $2,000, wouldn’t you rather still do the project and receive those funds instead of getting absolutely nothing and not being able to do the project?

  2. TadK says:

    I think this is a great idea, a wonderful use of the Kickstarter platform, and I for one will support your effort once it is posted.

  3. John Booth says:

    Count me among the supporters, Jay.

  4. Mark Siegal says:

    Yes, absolutely. Maybe one of the pledge gifts could be an ebook of your blog posts from the trip.

  5. Jaws says:

    So, will Jay be counting penguins and walruses?

    Or will they be counting Jays?

  6. Cora says:

    First of all, I think it’s a great idea and if you can manage it healthwise, familywise and moneywise, I’d go for it.

    Besides, thanks to my dayjob I happen to know that there are indeed cruises through the Antarctic. These cruises start in Southern Argentina or Tierra del Fuego and take place during the antipodean summer. The earliest start date is in October. I know of at least two companies in the US/Canada offering Antarctic cruises – there may be more. And yes, they’re pricey.

    However, here’s an idea for you: Why don’t you contact the cruise operators with the proposal to act as a sort of “writer in residence” on one of their Antarctic cruises? This is not entirely unheard of – the German cruise operator Hapag-Lloyd had a “writer in residence” program on their cruise liners for a while. Come to think of it, Hapag-Lloyd also offers Antarctic cruises, but the language barrier might be a problem. Anyway, if you could persuade a cruise company to sponsor you, that would take a chunk out of the costs and you could use kickstarter to finance the rest.

  7. I’d support that.

    I’ve got an in with the Chinese who go inland to the south pole every summer. Probably couldn’t get you in on that, but who knows until you try?

    1. Jay says:

      That is a decided long shot, but worth looking into. Let’s talk.

  8. creativeKayt says:

    YES!! You absolutely should do it. And, count me in for support.

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