It's about a new website called Unbound where an author can pitch a book idea and readers can pledge monetary support to get it published. Once a particular author's book gets a certain number of pledges (different for each author and book), Unbound gives the author the green light to write. The completed book will be published as a limited edition and each pledger's name will be printed in each book on a "Made Possible By..." page.
Each pitch has a time limit. If the money goal isn't reached by the deadline, all pledgers get a full refund of their money and - well - I guess the author has to figure out something else to do or takes their idea somewhere else.
There are different levels of reward for the pledger based on the amount they gave. Also, if the book is picked up for publishing, all pledgers have access to the author's private area on the site. Unbound describes it like this:
"Here you can get updates on the book's progress, watch exclusive interviews, read draft chapters, find out information about the author's backlist and join discussions with the author and other supporters. It's a portal into a new community of writers and readers: a place to comment on and contribute to a work in progress."Depending on the amount you pledged, you could also get a copy of the finished book sent to you - physical or electronic.
You'd have to be a pretty open and flexible author to be willing to try any of this, but I think for some readers, it's very exciting!
Unbound - Books are Now in Your Hands. At least, a little more than they have been in the past - if you have money to contribute. ; )