Here is the structure for year-end perks that I have in mind for the coming year:
$500 -- Full-year collection
$300 -- Half-year collection
$100 -- Series collection
$50 -- Full sheet of donor bookmarks
$10 -- One donor bookmark
The full-year collection keeps getting bigger, even with my duplex printer using both sides of the paper, so I need to minimize how many of those I do. At some point it may need a 3-ring binder. (Seriously, you've been buying about half of the fishbowl output. A month sold out for the first time in 2011, and if you bought ALL the poems from the fishbowl in a year, that would about double the collection size.) New this time is the half-year collection, which will feature the donor's choice of January-June or July-December poems. That will still contain a substantial number of poems, just a somewhat more managable size. The collections have a flyleaf of scrapbook paper, a title page, a dedication letter with the recipient's name, and my signature along with the poems organized by monthly fishbowl sessions. Each collection is numbered.
Also new is the series collection. I'm going to try compiling each poetic series into its own file during the year; I don't know if I'll get them all done but I should manage at least a few so that donors will have a choice. A series collection will include all the poems WRITTEN for that series to date, not just the published ones; and they will be in my best estimate of chronological order, not written or posted order. This may or may not include artwork, essays, or other supporting materials -- some series have extra stuff, others don't, and it will depend on whether I can get permission to reproduce any bits that aren't my own work. Note that a poetry chapbook typically runs 20-30 poems or 25-60 pages. "Path of the Paladins" is already at 22 poems and 89 pages (including some of the art and an essay). Otherwise the construction is similar to the collections described above.
The donor bookmark features a poem unique to each year, the year number, and my signature. Most of them I slice apart with the paper cutter and mail individually. Higher up the scale, people get a whole sheet, which I leave intact because it travels better that way -- you just cut them apart when they arrive. I print these on whatever fancy paper I can get in packages that seems seasonally appropriate; the 2011 paper had blue and silver snowflakes. Usually there are 4 or 5 bookmarks on a page.
The more active the audience is, the more goodies you get during and after a Poetry Fishbowl. Sometimes I need to swap things around a bit, so check the perk list for each fishbowl. Here is the typical lineup of perks that are currently available to everyone.
1) Just for sharing your ideas, one poem will be posted free during the fishbowl.
2) If there is at least one new prompter and/or one new donor, you get an extra freebie poem. This usually appears during the fishbowl, but sometimes shortly afterwards.
3) Right of first refusal. That's the official publishing term for my custom of letting the poetry fishbowl audience pick whatever you-all want to sponsor, before the remaining poems get added to my archive for submission to magazine editors and so forth.
4) If donations reach the $150 threshold, you get a free series poem. Everyone gets to vote on which series will have the freebie; donors get offer me prompts for it; and then it's posted for everyone to read. If there are lots of unpublished series poems, I'm likely to give you a choice from those rather than do another prompt session.
5) If donations reach the $200 threshold, you get an extra Poetry Fishbowl based on a poetic series. Once again, you'll get to pick which series. The fishbowl will probably run for a half-day instead of whole day, and you'll get a free poem posted for that series.
Donors enjoy a variety of perks in appreciation of their support. (Some of these are also available to my regular prompters. I don't shout them very often because they're simple enough to do for a few people, but would tangle up if too many were stacked together.) You folks help put the beans on the table for the wordsmith and family! You are all awesome.
1) Complete list of currently scheduled dates and themes. Read the Poetry Fishbowl lineup for January-July 2012.
2) The "Poetry Fishbowl Patron" icon. See the image reserved for donors on the Poetry Fishbowl landing page. It's an orange kitten watching a goldfish, which you can use to show your support of the fishbowl.
3) Donor perk-posts. You get to read the essays I write about poetry, which are custom-locked for donors. See a menu of previous perk-posts on the Poetry Fishbowl landing page.
4) Advance prompting. If you expect to be offline the day of a fishbowl, you can contact me backchannel and leave your prompts early. I'll jot them down for use on the fishbowl date.
5) Hold a poem. If you want to sponsor a particular poem, but won't have the funds available immediately, let me know. I can make a note of your interest and set that one aside for you, rather than submit it to magazines.
6) Split a poem's price into two or more payments. This is especially useful for epics, if you want to sponsor one by yourself but can't fit the whole thing into your budget all at once. Talk to me and we can probably work something out.
7) Suggest a theme. A couple times a year, usually, I ask folks for theme ideas and then put those into a poll to determine the most popular ones. But if you have a good idea, you don't have to wait for that -- just send me your suggestion, and if it sounds promising, I'll schedule it or save it for a poll.
8) Nonexclusive reprint rights. If you sponsor a specific poem for publication in The Wordsmith's Forge, then you have the option to repost it on your own blog or website, as long as you keep the credit intact.
9) Polling perks. Donors get extra votes in some polls, such as the selection of future themes. Donors also get access to some polls or calls for prompts that aren't open to the general audience, such as an extra serial poem.
Further details about this project appear on the Poetry Fishbowl landing page.