Moms don’t get a lot of “me” time. My friends and I laugh that staying up late watching trashy TV is our new form of rebellion. It’s something we can only do when everyone’s asleep. That’s the sole time we’re not needed and can do whatever we like. But by then, we’re too exhausted to do anything but watch TV.
We used to be wilder — the ones who forced others to stay up all night to see the sunrise, experimenting with all kinds of things we hope our kids don’t do. We used to live creative lives — in theater, dance, comedy, music, art, film. And though we still create, it’s not in the balls-out way we used to aggressively pursue those careers.
Recently, I had brunch with a friend who’s still very much in the film world. Chad and I have known each other since the summer of 1990, when we both gained admission into Georgia’s Governors Honors Program (GHP) in Theatre. After a rigorous audition process, we were among the top 30 high school actors in the state offered a tuition-free summer of education in our major area of expertise as well as a minor area of study (I chose mathematics so I could spend time with my best friend Phoebe, a Spanish major). It was a paradisiacal eight weeks. I was surrounded by the top scientists, writers, artists, dancers, musicians and other scholars my age.
Unlike many of us, Chad still acts, primarily in projects he writes and produces himself. (Check this out, friends.) As we sipped champagne and noshed on omelets, he mentioned how he preferred Indiegogo to Kickstarter as a method of raising money because Indiegogo lets you keep however much you raise, even if you don’t make your goal, whereas Kickstarter only gives you funds if you raise the full amount.
I had a lightbulb moment. Maybe I could use Indiegogo to raise the money I needed to get Google Glass!
Making it rain (sorta)
Every mom with small kids has a nightly ritual. In some order, there’s dinner, a bath and books to read. It’s pretty predictable. Recently, my daughter had started asking for time alone to play in the bath. All of a sudden, there were five, maybe 10 minutes a night I had to myself before I had to resume mommy duty.
“Tonight’s the night,” I thought, as I gathered everything I might need to create an ad-hoc Indiegogo campaign during her “me-time.” I put the supplies on my nighstand, sudsed the little one up, rinsed her hair and made sure there was a towel she could reach in case of extreme “water in my eye” emergency and hunkered down to Indiego-go-go on my iPad.
Challenge No. 1: Coming up with a catchy name.
I was about to head to San Francisco for a tech conference. The news was full of headlines of a #glasshole who’d upset patrons in a San Francisco bar. Knowing my bad girl days were behind me, I thought it’d be funny to play off of that trending story. I cheekily named my campaign: “Make me a #glasshole.”
Challenge No. 2: Setting incentive levels.
During GHP, we all had nicknames. My nickname was “The Sex Goddess” — not because I earned it on my back, but because at 16, I was a bit more, ahem, developed than the other girls. (Not that theater boys were into that, but …)
As a nod to Chad, who’d given me the solution to my fundraising woes, I tied incentives for giving to a sexy theme. Here’s the different levels of sponsorship and what people would get for their contributions to my #glasshole campaign.
Challenge No. 3: Reading (period)
I thought I was pretty clever coming up with all those categories and descriptions in less than 10 minutes, not to mention the plaintive yet tongue-in-cheek “about text.” Unfortunately, just as I reached the pivotal moment of publishing the campaign, my daughter started yelling for me.
I pushed the publish button in a panic. The pop-up warning said: “Are you sure? You can’t edit after you go live.” Heck yeah I was sure! I pushed that puppy and skittered in to rescue the tot from waterlog.
After she was comfortably abed, I snuck a peak at my handiwork and that’s when I realized my campaign was closing in 25 hours. WTF? I thought. Then I did a little backend research and felt like a dolt. I had thought the date-setting area asked, “When do you want to end the campaign?” What it actually asked was, “When do you need to get your payout?” Because I was traveling to San Francisco in a couple of weeks, I chose the Monday before I flew out. So, instead of having a 15-day campaign, I gave myself about a day to raise $2,000.
Talk about an “Oh schiesser!” moment. I shared and promoted the page as much as I could on my phone, and went to bed feeling like a total moron.
A small phone alert rocketed me awake: I had my first donor! And I had no idea who he was …