Project update two weeks in – 89% of target achieved

As of this afternoon some £4,450 had been pledged for DD&D, which is 89% of the minimum target of £5,000 and very pleasing with 26 days of the campaign still to go.

The details of the launch event are nearly ready to announce, and it would be fair to say we have a couple of interesting guests.  More info in a couple of weeks.

Project update – final manuscript submitted and crowdfunding well underway

The crowdfunding campaign has been running for almost a week.  Last time I looked I had received £3,350 worth of pledges, or 67% of the target.  Thanks so much to all those who have pledged. In almost every case there is a burst of activity directly after a Kickstarter campaign opens followed by an inevitable slow-down, and this has happened here. Based on Kickstarter historic trend statistics, however, it looks reasonably good for me to achieve the £5,000 target by the closure date of 20th June.

I still need to raise a minimum of another £1,650, though, so if you haven’t pledged, there is no time like the present…. Remember, money is not deducted from your card until the campaign has closed and then only if the target is reached.  You can pledge here :- .  The Kickstarter process is surprisingly simple and it will only take you a few minutes to complete.

A couple of weeks ago Mark Worrall, the publisher, made a number of extremely helpful comments with regard to format, headings and, particularly, a couple of overly complex tables I had included as Appendices.  I have made the necessary amendments, severely slimmed down the aforementioned tables and this lunchtime sent it back as the final submitted manuscript – a significant project milestone.  The next step, manuscript wise, is that Mark typesets it into final page format (a significant task, given that the book has 141,000 words) so I can produce the index.


The Crowdfunding Process for ‘Diamonds, Dynamos and Devils’ FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the book about?

Tommy Docherty managed Chelsea FC for six tumultuous years. Between 1961 and 1967 he got hired, relegated, promoted, lauded, let down, criticised, vilified, backed, victimised and fined. His departure was in keeping with much of his time at Chelsea – controversial and played out in newspaper headlines.

Garrulous, volatile, unpredictable, impulsive, innovative, intensely competitive, highly talented and much-loved by Chelsea supporters, ‘The Doc’ won one trophy for The Blues and was close to winning plenty more. He transformed and modernised the club, built a highly-regarded young team from the ashes he inherited but over time he fell out with, and sold, key players. In the end, amid gathering controversy, his parting was probably inevitable.

It can be argued that more happened to Chelsea in the six years of The Doc’s reign than in any comparable period before or since and this book covers every major incident and key personality.  The famous victories. The numbing defeats. The players – Venables, Tambling, Bridges, Bonetti, Mortimore, Blunstone, Upton, Shellito, Murray, Harris, McCreadie, Hinton, Graham, Hollins, Boyle, Osgood, Cooke, Baldwin, Hateley and more.  The supporters.  The heroes. The villains. The rows and the fall-outs.  The tactical innovations. The controversies – Blackpool, Bermuda, the Roma riot and more.  His relationships with chairmen, players, journalists and the football authorities. The stars he created, bought and sold.

Docherty is still revered by many lifelong supporters who saw his teams play. This book explains exactly why he is remembered with such affection, half a century after he left the club.

This book utilises extensive newspaper and book research to examine all of these and more, and draws a series of conclusions about one of the most exciting periods in Chelsea history. It also includes an exclusive recent interview with The Doc, whose talent for expressing trenchant views remains undimmed.

Why are there three different versions of the book?

There are three separate versions of the book being produced. Many books have a choice of paperback or e-book versions, but I also wanted to give potential purchasers the option of a ‘deluxe’ hardback version, with photographs and a slip cover.

The text is the same in each version, but the format differs. Because of the uncertain nature of book production, the dates shown are targets I will try very hard to adhere to.

‘Deluxe’ Hardback Version

The plan is to try and crowdfund a hardback version of the book, incorporating twenty-four photographs.  This will be a special edition limited to orders placed during the crowdfunding campaign.  After that campaign closes, no further hardback copies will be on sale.

I have chosen a provisional set of twenty-four photographs for the ‘deluxe’ version that try and encapsulate Chelsea in that period, and the photo order will be firmed up if the target sum is reached.

Paperback Version

It is planned that from 6th October (50 years to the day after Tommy Docherty left Chelsea) a paperback version will be available for order from Amazon, price to be confirmed nearer the time. It is also planned to hold a book launch that day, more details nearer the time.  Copies of the paperback should also be available from the cfcuk stall in Fulham Road on Chelsea home match-days from mid-October onwards. This, and the e-book, will be produced regardless of whether or not the crowdfunding campaign for the hardback book is successful.

E-book version

An e-book will also be available from Amazon, again with a target publication date of 6th October.  Price to be confirmed nearer the time.

What is crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is a means of financing a product, in this case a book, through the producer (in this case me) receiving advance pledges from individuals (backers) interested in purchasing it.  If sufficient pledges are received, the book will be published.

Kickstarter is the most well-known and globally-recognised web platform for crowdfunding projects, and will be used to try and raise the necessary money to produce the ‘Deluxe’ hardback version.  More info on Kickstarter here .

How much are you trying to raise?

I need to raise a minimum of £5,000 to produce the hardback version. This means that a minimum of 200 pledges of a cover price of £25 (which includes UK p&p) will need to be made to enable publication to take place. Pledges are of course welcome from worldwide Chelsea supporters, and differential international costs (£30 for Europe, £35 for US & ROTW) will be made clear on the Kickstarter page.  There is also the option to choose to pledge for two copies.

How Does Kickstarter work?

In essence would-be backers make a pledge during the forty-day period of the campaign, entering their credit or debit card details into the secure online Kickstarter system. If the fundraising target is reached, then once the campaign closes, the money is deducted from the backers card and a firm order is placed with the printers for the requisite copies of the hardback book.

When I pledge, what am I committing to?

The plan is to open the Kickstarter page for pledges from 11th May to 20th June, a period of forty days. Links to that page will be sent via e-mail and social media, and placed on this blog, as soon as the page goes live.

How do I pledge?

In order to pledge to the project, potential backers will need to follow the steps below. You can use a debit or credit card associated with Visa, MasterCard or American Express.

Here is a how-to-pledge guide, provided by Kickstarter.

Go to the project page

  1. Hit the green ‘Back this project’ button.
  2. Enter in a pledge amount for the reward you choose.
  3. Select the reward you’d like (i.e which region you want the book(s) posted to and whether you want one or two copies).
  4. Scroll down to the green ‘Continue to next step’ button and click it.
  5. If you have a Kickstarter account, log in. If not, choose whether you wish to open an account or proceed as a guest.
  6. Enter the information associated with the credit card you’d like to use for the pledge, or choose to use a card you’ve already stored (if you already have a Kickstarter account).
  7. If you’d like to store this card information for future use, confirm the ‘Remember this card for future pledges’ box is checked.
  8. Click the green ‘Pledge’ button.
  9. You’ll be directed to a confirmation page and will receive an email from Kickstarter shortly indicating that you’re a backer.

If you run into any issues during the process, you should let Kickstarter know where they encounter the problem and if they get any specific error messages. Kickstarter have produced an FAQ at giving more information on this process.

What happens if you don’t receive sufficient pledges?

If the target of 200 pledges is not reached, no money will be deducted from backers accounts. In that case, the hardback version will not be produced. The paperback and e-book versions will proceed regardless of whether the hardback version is produced.

What is the difference between a pledger and a backer?

If sufficient funds are raised, and the hardback book is produced, the people who made pledges automatically become backers, as it becomes a live project.

If you do receive sufficient pledges, what happens next?

If the target of £5,000 is reached or exceeded, backers will be advised that the project has been successful and the pledged money will be deducted from their accounts once the Kickstarter campaign closes on 20th June. The photographs will be ordered and the print run, and print schedule, agreed with the printer and it will be all systems go.

Can I trust Kickstarter?

Kickstarter are the most well-known online Crowdfunding company and have a strong reputation in terms of reliability and integrity. They have been used for thousands of successful projects.

When will I receive my book?

The plan is that, if we get sufficient pledges for the hardback books, they  will be dispatched in good time for Christmas, hopefully earlier. Backers will receive regular e-mail progress updates until the dispatch date.

I live overseas, can I still make a pledge?

You can indeed. The Kickstarter page lists prices for UK, European Union and Rest Of The World.

If I don’t make a pledge, can I still buy the book?

The only way to buy the hardback book, with photographs and a slip cover, is through making a pledge. The paperback and e-book versions are scheduled to be available on Amazon in October and can be purchased in the normal manner.

DD&D manuscript finished / project update 4/5/17

A major milestone was reached this afternoon when, well over three years after the idea of the book was first mooted, a 141,600 word manuscript was finally sent to Mark Worrall of Gate 17 Books, the publishers of ‘Diamonds, Dynamos and Devils‘.  Thanks to Mark for all his support in getting to this stage.

front DD&D cover with blue interview flash 270417There is still loads to be done in terms of producing the various book versions, but finishing the manuscript draft is a bridge finally (if belatedly)  crossed.  For one reason and another, there have been times when I thought today would never come. The interview with The Doc for me rounded off the writing part of the project nicely – thanks to Nick Tilt for setting it up.

The Kickstarter page is almost ready and the crowdfunding publicity campaign is in advanced stages, ready for the launch next Thursday (11th).

I should be banging on about the book on the Chelsea Fancast and the Chelsea Is Blue podcast in the next week or so, and will put up links once they are available. I will also be writing pieces for the WAGNH and Chelsea Daft websites as well as Twitter, Facebook and, er, Linkedin where people I worked with donkeys years ago get a chance to realise I am still alive. All retweets, likes, shares etc will obviously be gratefully received. Anyone who is on my email distribution list, and there are plenty, can look forward to hearing from me as well.

I will post a detailed Crowdfunding Q&A on here next week.


Update 24th April – pricing for crowdfunded hardback version and Happy Birthday Doc

First of all, a very happy birthday to Tommy Docherty, 89 years old today.  The interview with The Doc held on Easter Monday has now been transcribed (a labour intensive process if ever there was one….) and is currently being tidied up. Hopefully purchasers will find the topics covered, and the thoughts of The Doc, of interest. It would be fair to say he has probably mellowed over the past five decades, but probably not that much.  Still passionate, still opinionated and still in love with Chelsea Football Club.

To simplify the crowdfunding administration, and given that the pledges can only be made via the Kickstarter page, we have decided to simplify the price of pledges for the hardback version, which will now automatically include postage and packing.

The UK cost will be £25, the cost for European orders will be £30 and for the US and the Rest Of The World it will be £35.  These are the total price, with no add-ons.

The cost of ordering two copies will be £46 (UK), £56 (Europe) and £66 (US & Rest Of The World).  All these prices include p&p.

We are still on target to commence the crowdfunding campaign on Thursday 11th May.  More information nearer the time.