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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Kickstarter, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Emily Books Featured On Kickstarter

Writers Emily Gould and Ruth Curry, the two women behind the Emily Books project, hope to raise $40,000.00 on Kickstarter. They plan to use the funds to revamp their company website. We’ve embedded a video about the project above.

Here’s more from the Kickstarter page: “We’ve decided to partner with Rumors, Andy Pressman’s design firm, to create the Emilybooks.com of our dreams that we’ve just described. We’re impressed with their work on the Verso and Melville House websites and we want to compete in the same league as those guys. With these advancements, our hope is that we’ll attract more readers and subscribers and be able to grow, to reach more readers, to materially support the careers of the writers we love, and to make sure Emily Books lives long into the future.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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2. Kickstarter unveils a month of comics events

201504010353.jpg

Since launching, Kickstarter has funded 2,652 comics projects, raising $37 million. Comics have a 49.72% success rate—the fourth highest after dance, music and theater, so it’s a well established category for the crowdfunding giant.

In the month of April, Kickstarter’s Brooklyn office will host several comics related seminars and events. You can RSVP for all of these on the Kickstarter page, but here’s a rundown, with a pair of events this Thursday.

Kickstarter 101: Starting Your Comics Project
APR 2
6:00 pm
at 58 Kent Street, Brooklyn, NY 11122
Host: Jamie Tanner (Kickstarter, “The Black Well”)
Special Guests: Molly Ostertag (“Strong Female Protagonist”), Ray Sumser (“The Entire Cartoon Universe”), Hazel Newlevant (“Chainmail Bikini”)
Whether you’re a writer or artist, working in print or online, there are great ways for you to use Kickstarter. This primer will show you how to bring your Comics project to life. A panel of experts will discuss how to structure your campaign to tell your story, come up with great rewards, and spread the word about your project.

Kickstarter 201: Comics Rewards & Fulfillment
APR 2
7:45 pm
at 58 Kent Street, Brooklyn, NY 11122
Host: Craig Engler (Kickstarter, “Lovecraft: The Blasphemously Large First Issue”)
Special Guests: Heather Antos (“Unlawful Good”), Amy Chu (“Girls Night Out”), George Rohac (CEO, Breadpig)
Join us for a candid and in-depth talk on creating and fulfilling rewards for your Comics project. This panel discussion will explore the virtues of digital vs. print rewards, unique experiences you can offer your backers, and the always-popular subject of shipping costs.

Talking Shop: An Evening with Bill Plympton
APR 7
7:00 pm
at 58 Kent Street, Brooklyn, NY 11122
Moderator: Signe Baumane (“Rocks in My Pockets“)
Join two-time Oscar-nominated filmmaker Bill Plympton as he screens his award-winning, animated feature film, “Cheatin’” — a tale of love, jealousy, revenge, and murder. Following the screening, Bill will discuss the making of the film — and its 40,000 hand-drawn frames — with moderator Signe Baumane, and take questions from audience.

Talking Shop: Comics in the Past, Present, and Future
APR 22
7:00 pm
at 58 Kent Street, Brooklyn, NY 11122
Moderator: Charles Brownstein (Executive Director, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund)
Special Guests: Karen Green (producer of “She Makes Comics,” Graphic Novel Librarian at Columbia University), Locust Moon Press (publishers of “Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream”), John Roberts (Comixology)
Across genres and styles, comics have gone through significant transformations in their century-plus of popularity. This lively evening of talks with industry all-stars will explore how comics have evolved, and dig into their fascinating history, development, culture — and what the future might hold.

Introduction to Comic Book Drawing with Josh Bayer
APR 25
12:00 pm
at 58 Kent Street, Brooklyn, NY 11122
Special Guest: Josh Bayer
Writer, teacher, and editor Josh Bayer will discuss comics tips and best practices in this two-hour workshop aimed at adults. Attendees will also get to put what they’ve learned into action with an actual comics-making exercise. Josh is the editor of the comics anthology “Suspect Device,” author of the comics “Raw Power,” “Rom Prison Riot,” and “Theth,” and a contributor to “Henry and Glenn Forever and Ever,” among many other small press anthologies. He has been drawing underground comics since 1988.

2 Comments on Kickstarter unveils a month of comics events, last added: 4/4/2015
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3. Kickstarter Breathes New Life Into Completed Campaign Pages

Kickstarter is a great way to raise money for creative projects. But up until now, the project pages have only been good as long as the campaign is live, making them slightly obsolete once a project has been funded. That has changed.

The crowd funding site has introduced Spotlight, a new way to update project pages for projects that have already been funded. The idea is to help creators continue to showcase their work beyond the funding phase and into the production, distribution and sales phases. It makes a lot of sense considering that Kickstarter pages are often in the top search results for projects funded by the site, and these mini web sites include a lot of details about a project.

One of the best parts is that Kickstarter creators can now use these pages to sell completed works. Now an author can list their book for sale on the Kickstarter page and include links to purchase the book from a bookseller like Powell’s or an eBook from iTunes.

The new spotlight view also includes a timeline feature, that shows a creator’s story at a glance. This helps supporters gain a quick visual chronology of news and updates about the project. The original project page will continue to exist behind a “Story” tab. Below is a video demo which explains how it all works.

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4. Alan Moore Interview Part I – Steve Moore, River of Ghosts, The Show, and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star…

It’s the 26th of February, and the time is 7.00pm, the usual time for all my telephone interviews with Alan Moore, since the first one we did, back in March 2008. This is something like the eighth time I’ve interviewed him 1, but I still get nervous. There’s the usual fumbling around with a voice recorder, and making sure I know how to put the phone on speaker – I’m totally technically incompetent, so Deirdre, my wife, has to come and oversee all this, to make sure I don’t do something stupid.

Pádraig Ó Méalóid: I’m going to get stuck into this thing because I’ve a long list of questions, at least some of which we’ll get to. OK, I was going to ask you about Steve. Obviously Steve Moore’s death must have been an enormous blow to you. 2

Steve MooreAlan Moore: Well, yeah, obviously, and it – it was a period of massive shock, and of course a few marvels in there. There was an ethereal period. We managed to follow Steve’s instructions, and scattered his ashes on the burial mound in Shrewsbury Lane by the light of, not only a full moon, but of a Supermoon, which is when the Moon is full at its perigee, which is apparently its closest approach to Earth, and it was just at the tail end of Hurricane Bertha so we didn’t think that we were going to be able to really do it successfully, but as it happened, the hurricane had blown all the clouds out of the sky by the time we got down to Shooters Hill, and it was a – a rather magical night in its way, even though I managed to end up wearing at least a small portion of Steve, when we had a difficulty transferring him to the scattering tube. Funnily enough, I’d said on the way down there that I hope this doesn’t end up like The Big Lebowski, with me kind of going on inappropriately about Steve’s service in Vietnam, while getting ashes all over me, but apart from me going on inappropriately about Steve’s service in Vietnam, that was pretty much what happened. But otherwise it was a great night and, yeah, I suppose that after Steve’s death I kind of hurled myself into a great deal of creative work – it’s just my way of dealing with things, you know? Or perhaps my way of not dealing with things, I don’t know. But, yeah, it still goes on, like at the moment I’m, I just went down last weekend to Steve’s place to talk with Bob Rickard3.

I went to the burial mound – it’s been padlocked since we did the scattering there, which – I don’t think it was in response to our scattering, probably more in response to some of the empty cider bottles that I’d noticed around the site, but I suppose in its way it’s fortuitous – if Steve had died a year later it probably wouldn’t have been anywhere near as – convenient? – to honour his final wishes, but – no, he’s still an immense presence in my life. I’m still, I’m wrapping up dealing with his estate – and I shall be dealing with that for a number of years, I’m sure. But, yeah, we’ve still got the Book of Magic to come out, which is very very much a joint venture, even if – even if one of the members of The Moon and Serpent is now only active upon the Inner Plane, it’s still going to be both of us on the cover, there. It’s going OK, Pádraig.

Bumper BookPÓM: Good, I’m glad. As you mentioned the book, The Moon and Serpent Bumper Book of Magic, is there any kind of a timescale for that?

AM: Well, at the moment I have just finished the final article, the big concluding essay that me and Steve had been working on for about six months before last March and that leaves me one episode of The Soul4 to do, and then I’ve got to go back and tinker with the Tarot Card, and the Kabala Boardgame, and some of the other, more art-centred things, and less text-centred – most of the text-centred stuff is completed. As to when that will come out – we would like to get it out in 2016, but that is not a promise, that is an aspiration5.

PÓM: [laughter]

AM: I’m sure that – yeah, you know what that means – we’ve been living under a coalition for some several years now, so we will know what we mean by promises and aspirations.

PÓM: Somebody was suggesting – are you likely to do a performance related to that when it’s finally finished?

AM: Don’t know. Don’t know – I hadn’t been thinking of a performance related to it. Eh, don’t know, is the answer to that, it is nothing that I’d actually considered. These things tend to come in seasons. There was a period when I was closer to Tim Perkins – Tim moved to Oxford – me and Tim still communicate, and we still talk about possible projects together, but it doesn’t feel like the time at the moment when performance stuff is probably at the forefront. I had a very very nice offer from Paul Smith of Blast First records, talking about the possibility of getting some satellite time for something live, but, quite honestly, it would be filling three hours of live – no. It’s not like I – my urges at the moment are not really towards live performance. That said, tomorrow night I shall be going down to the local café, and me and Robin Ince and Grace Petrie will be doing another one of our, just impromptu little events6 which Robin is – we’re recording them all, Joe Brown is doing all of the mixing and everything, and they will eventually be released as podcasts. But that’s pretty much the extent of my public appearances at the moment.

PÓM: I met Tim Perkins for the first time in August. Worldcon – that’s the World Science Fiction Convention – was on in London, and myself and himself and Gary Lloyd ended up doing a panel about your musical output.7

AM: Aw, brilliant! And how is Tim? I haven’t spoken to him for ages.

PÓM: Tim was good! I was delighted to meet him, because I have a lot of his work, but I’ve one question I was asking him that I had always been interested in, which was, in all the musical work that you did, did you play a musical instrument at all?

AM: Oh, no. No, I never played a musical instrument. I am – yeah, I know I’m a fairly multi-competent kind of individual, but no, no. Playing a musical instrument has always been beyond me, and I have nothing but the greatest of respect for those that can, and I tend to – even if I could play a musical instrument, I’ve known such brilliant musicians that it would have been foolish not to leave that side of things to them, and to play to my strengths.

PÓM: Yeah, I know. He did say something about your playing – was it with one hand, was it Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, something like that, on a piano?

The Sooty Super Xylophone, Green Monk Products (Games and Toys 1956)AM: Oh, I can actually – because when I was a child, I had a Sooty Xylophone, with numbered keys, and the actual score to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, with numbered keys on xylophone, is 1155665 – it’s been a long time since I played it, but I could remember it all the way through, on my Sooty Xylophone. So, yes, I suppose technically, if there is ever any need for a kind of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star refrain on xylophone, then you’ve got my number.8

PÓM: Fair enough. I always wanted to clear that one up.

AM: Well, it’s an important point, Pádraig. No, I’m surprised that Tim remembered that.

PÓM: Yes. Well, it obviously made an impression.

AM: Yeah, obviously, obviously.

PÓM: Tell me about The Show. What’s happening?

AM: The Show. Well, The Show is the name of the project that follows on from the Jimmy’s End films – which, surely to Christ, should be out soon. It should be very very soon – I’ve been kicking up a fuss, Mitch [Jenkins] has been kicking up a fuss…9

PÓM: This is the stuff from Lex Records?

AM: Apparently there’s been unavoidable delays on the packaging side. I don’t know!

PÓM: Yeah, I know, I know. It’s bad enough having to always wait for your comics to come out, but really…!

jimmys endAM: It’s this film business, it’s – and I am kind of limited in what I can actually do. And it’s the same with the comics business, I suppose. Anyway, that should be out soon, and I have written a screenplay for a feature film, called The Show, which is designed to follow on from that. We have been talking with various parties about maybe making that screenplay into the first two episodes of a serial, which – we could probably have done it, but that doesn’t seem to be – that’s not technically gonna happen. At the moment we’re talking about maybe doing what we had originally intended to do, which is to bring out The Show as a feature film, and then to launch The Show as a television series, so at the moment, that’s all up in the air, and in my experience of these things, some things just remain up in the air forever, in defiance of gravity. So, who knows? But there are talks going on, it’s looking quite promising, and I’m sure that one way or another there’ll be – we’re asking for so little, to do this film, at least in terms of money. We’re asking for complete control, and complete ownership. But financially we’re asking for very little. It would be a very good film – it’d need me writing a few more songs, and it would be very differently paced to the five short films, because short films, they can be as long as you want them to be, and you can linger, whereas a feature film, that’s got to have – I’m not saying that it’s gonna be kind of action/thriller paced, but certainly a lot more conventionally paced for a feature film, put it like that.

PÓM: Yeah, of course.

AM: Yeah, that’s all going on as we speak – there might be more news – I’m sure if there is any more news, that’ll be in a couple of – in a couple of months we might know more.

PÓM: OK, fair enough. Emmm, what was I gonna ask? The League. The next – the third part of the Janni Nemo trilogy is coming out soon…?10

River of Ghosts coverAM: River of Ghosts. I’ve just looked in the box that I got from Knockabout the other day, and I’ve got – yes, very soon, I’ve got my copies already. We are very pleased with it. It’s funny – when me and Kevin O’Neill first got our complimentary copies, we both looked through it, skimmed through it, independently, and when we were talking on the phone later I was – he was saying that he’d been – he’d felt that his art really, it was a bit tired-looking, and I was saying, ‘Yeah,’ I said, ‘I thought your art was great,’ I said, ‘but I don’t know with my script – I’m not sure that the ending’s not rushed, or something.’ Like, all these little things. And then, after that, I was still a bit despondent, but I sat down, and picked up the copy again, and started reading it. And I got to the end, and I went and phoned Kevin and left an answer phone message saying, ‘Actually, Kevin, I should go back and having another look at River of Ghosts, I think that it might be about the best run of the League since the first couple of volumes.’ And I got a phone call back from Kevin about ten minutes later, saying ‘Actually, I was going to call you and say the same thing! ’ It’s just that, when your expectations are up, and you first see the thing in print – I should know by now that very often my first reaction is disappointment. But then, you read it again and, yes, this is – it’s a bit of a corker. I think, beautifully rounds off the Nemo trilogy, and I hope will put the other two books into perspective, ‘cause I did hear a couple of comments saying, ‘Oh well, we’ve read Heart of Ice, good story and all that, but it does seem a bit – a bit slender, a bit thin, a bit inconsequential, compared to other graphic novels.’ It’s forty-eight pages, it’s like two issues of a comic and, really, it’s not until the River of Ghosts that we get to the end of the story – yes, they are all self-contained episodes, but there is an over-all story that’s going on, which I think we tie up quite nicely in River of Ghosts.

The story opens upon Lincoln Island in 1975, so this is six years after we saw Janni in League volume three in 1969. She’s now – what? – around eighty, and it’s been very interesting – I’ve always wanted, since I started writing Halo Jones, I always intended to have that conclude with Halo Jones as a very old woman, and I – I don’t know, I think that there is something magnificent about old women, and I’ve always wanted to do one with a very old woman in the main role. So, with River of Ghosts I think I’ve accomplished that.

Hugo HerculesThere’s – we see a couple of old characters. There’s a couple of interesting new characters, one of whom might be of interest to you. Kevin found an American newspaper strip from, I think, 1902, that was entitled Hugo Hercules, and this is a very very big, very very strong man. I think it lasted for six or seven episodes – it wasn’t very long-lived. But, yeah, the first American superhero, I think, pretty much. I can’t imagine any earlier than that. Certainly earlier than Hugo Danner in Gladiator, a long while earlier than Superman.

So, yeah, I had a look at some of these early strips, which generally don’t have much in the way of dialogue balloons, but put most of the dialogue into captions under the panels, and from that, in the transcriptions of whatever the accent was supposed to be that Hugo Hercules was speaking in, I finally figured out that it was probably a racist and ill-informed transliteration of an Irish accent. It could just as easily have been Polish, or possibly Trinidadian, but I think probably it was meant to be Irish. So, we’ve kind of worked out, yeah, all right, if this Hugo Hercules, so-called, was Irish, what might be his backstory. Me and Kevin are very pleased with him as a character, and he plays quite a major part in River of Ghosts – which deals with, as you might expect from the first two volumes, it deals with a conclusion to the Ayesha question. Just kind of tying it all up in a neat and somewhat blood-stained bow.

The River of Ghosts in question is the Amazon, which means that we get to – as we did with Heart of Ice, less so, perhaps, with Roses of Berlin – but with Heart of Ice we were very much depending upon the New Travellers’ Almanac, and its gazetteer of fictional sights, and we’ve fallen back upon that quite a bit for this exploration of the Amazon. So, if that gives you any hints as to what sort of things we might be running into…

New Travellers' AlmanacPÓM: It does! I actually find, I go back and I reread the New Travellers’ Almanac and the Black Dossier quite a bit, because I think that there’s a huge amount more information, a huge amount more stuff, about various adventures that’s coded into those than you’re probably ever going to put down on the comics page.

AM: Well, that’s true. And also, because we were very specific – I think back in the New Travellers’ Almanac there’s already bits talking about Jenny Diver…?

PÓM: Yes, yes.

AM: And we did have this fairly fully planned out, right from the start. One of the things that I’ve thought about is the possibility at some point in the future, of an actual integrated volume of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, in chronological order, to see how that reads? I don’t know. This is nothing I’ve discussed with anybody else, so I’m going off the menu here, a little bit. But…

PÓM: I know – from all the stuff, there’s all sorts of bits and pieces, and there’s dates, and it is possible to build up quite a detailed chronology of – particularly from the beginning of the Victorian League, and Mina Murray and all of that, upwards. It’s remarkable how much little bits and pieces fit in. Like the current volumes, the Janni Diver stuff, is filling in more little odds – and you go back and look at something and say, ‘Ah, that was there all along.’

AM: This is it, this is what we’re trying to do. And, actually, having said that it would be nice to put it all in chronological order, there is a lot to be said for the way that we’re doing it, where we’re jumping back and forth a little bit. Jack Nemo, whom we glimpse at the end of volume three, and in River of Ghosts, it’s almost like an origin story. Jack Nemo features in it – he’s a very small boy, a couple of years older than when we saw him as a five- or six-year-old running around on the Nautilus in 1969. We’re stitching all of this together, and we’re doing it all for a reason. One thing that might be of note is that this will be the last piece of work that me and Kevin will be doing on the League for a little while. We – this is largely because – me and Kevin have both been doing the League for fifteen years now. I know it doesn’t seem like it, but it actually is.

PÓM: I know. It’s 1999, wasn’t it?

AM: Something like that. Fifteen or sixteen years? And during that time I’ve been doing quite a bit of other work, but Kevin, the League has been pretty much the only thing that he’s been doing, so it’s more like – it’s a long-term sentence. And although me and Kevin are both in love with what we’re doing on the League, I could see that, it was a bit of an unfair strain upon Kevin, because the League might not be the only thing he wanted to do with the rest of his life. So, anyway, I can’t tell you very much about what we’re doing – in fact, I can barely tell you anything at all, except that me and Kevin are going to be doing something new for about eighteen months, summat like that.

PÓM: OK. In a comic form, I presume, is it?

Black DossierAM: In a comic form. It’ll be an episodic thing. It will be a million miles away from the League. And we’re both very excited about it, we think we’re actually breaking new ground in term of the effects that comics can achieve. Which is, again, ‘cause I know that Kevin’s always had a hankering to experiment, and we’ve done as much as we can of that in the League – the League is limitless in some ways, but in other ways there are certain stories that perhaps wouldn’t fit quite so easily into it, and with this, yeah, we’re a long way away from the League. What we’re thinking is, we’re going to do this, as a break for Kevin, for the next eighteen months, or something, and then we will probably be going back to do book four of the League, but this is a long way in the future, but we have got a lot of good ideas that would – in some ways I’d like to do a book four that wouldn’t be the last book of the League, but could be. And if it was the last book of the League, then everything would be tied up. All of the strands and insinuations and implications in the Black Dossier, all of the tiny little threads, going right the way back to issue one of the first volume, I can see a way that all of this could be tied up splendidly into a fantastic story – but that will have to wait until me and Kevin have had our little vacation. We’re about four months into this eighteen months sabbatical anyway, so hopefully it won’t seem as long as that in the outside world.

PÓM: Before we leave it, can you tell us anything about what’s going to be in volume four?

AM: Other than, like I say, a tying up of ends, it would probably be set not long after 2009 and it would be tying up threads from all three volumes of the League, from the Black Dossier, and from the Nemo trilogy. It would be a – it’s a kind of story that I’ve been thinking of for a few years, but, yeah, after we’ve taken this sabbatical, both me and Kevin thing that, when we do go back to the League, we’ll go back refreshed, and capable of giving – not that we aren’t incredibly pleased with River of Ghosts. Like I say, that seems to have some of the energy – I wouldn’t want to deny the energy of any of the volumes of the League, but it’s undeniable that, say, the first two volumes are paced and structured very very differently to Century. And there were some people who thought that Century was a bit slow, or a bit over-complex, but that was just what we wanted to do with the characters. We wanted to show that it didn’t always have to be a fast-paced Victorian romp, that there was plenty of interesting stuff in this world that could do with lingering over. But, when we finished Century we thought, all right, let’s take a break from that stuff, and do the Nemo trilogy, something very fast paced, where we’re paying a lot of attention to spectacle, where that is a big part of the story development, and that gives Kevin an opportunity to really show what he can do on some nice spreads, and things like that, of which there are a couple of – some of the best pages of art by Kevin I’ve ever seen, in this upcoming issue. Some very memorable little images there.

To Be Continued…

——————————————————————————————————-

FOOTNOTES11:

1Previous interviews I’ve done with Alan Moore in various places, including the Forbidden Planet blog, 3:AM Magazine, here on The Beat, and on my own Slovobooks blog:- June 2008 FP I, FP II, May 2009 FP I, FP II, FP III, March 2011 3:AM, July 2011 FP, April 2013 CB I, CB II, October 2013 MM I, MM II, MM III, and January 2014’s Last Interview? Which, of course, it wasn’t. That question mark wasn’t there for nothin’!

2In case you all think I was being hideously impolite by launching directly into talking about Steve Moore, I should point out that there was a certain amount of small-talk in there beforehand, which none of you need to know anything more about. However, if you wish to read my interview with Steve, called The Hermit of Shooters Hill, you’ll find them all (six parts so far) here on The Beat, under the tag HERMIT.

The News, issue 1, November 19733Bob Rickard is the founder of the Fortean Times: The Journal of Strange Phenomena (Originally called The News, which both Alan Moore and Steve Moore contributed to over the years. He is also one of the two people Steve described to me as being his best friends. The identity of the other one should not be hard to grasp…

4The Soul is a strip, written by AM and drawn by John Coulthart, that was to appear in America’s Best Comics’ Tomorrow Stories, but is now going to be in The Moon & Serpent Bumper Book of Magic.

5A favourite saying of British politicians.

6 Another of these events, Alan, Grace and Robin’s Blooming Confusion is in the NN Café in Northampton on the 31st of March 2015, and there are still tickets available, here. Robin Ince is a comedian, and Grace Petrie is a singer.

7Tim Perkins is AM’s main musical collaborator, with five CD releases thus far between them. He has a hopelessly out-of-date website, here. Gary Lloyd is another of AM’s musical collaborators, having worked with him on the audio version of Brought to Light. The interview with Tim and Gary is slowly being transcribed, and will doubtless turn up on the ‘net eventully.

8Before anyone writes into to point out that the Sooty Xylophone isn’t actually a xylophone, not being made of wood, we’ve already got that covered. All I can do is report what is said!

9This is in reference to Lex Projects’ Kickstarter for Alan Moore and Mitch Jenkins’s His Heavy Heart short film, which those of us who backed it are still waiting to see make its way into our hands. It’s by no means the only Kickstarter project I’ve backed that I’m still waiting for, mind you.

10There was some confusion about the actual publication date of this book. It first made landfall on the shelves of GOSH! Comics in London on Tuesday the 3rd of March, and should have been available elsewhere – not just in the UK, but also in the US – that same week. However a labour dispute at American west coast ports meant that containers remained in the docks, rather than being shipped onward, with the result that copies weren’t available until about a week and a half later on the 12th of March.

11Why all the footnotes? I’ve been reading through the works of Flann O’Brien, and bits of it have rubbed off on me. It’s even slightly relevant to the subject of this interview, as it was largely his fault that I went back to them in the first place. Further enlightenment, at least of a sort, here.

1 Comments on Alan Moore Interview Part I – Steve Moore, River of Ghosts, The Show, and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star…, last added: 3/26/2015
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5. Thoughts From Iceland on Kickstarter

Lonnie Mann is trying to raise $3,000 on Kickstarter to fund a comic strip book called Thoughts from Iceland, a Travelogue Comic.

Inspired by John & Hank Green’s \"Thoughts From Places\" videos on YouTube, the comics recount Mann’s experiences traveling around Iceland. Check it out:

I’ve self-published very small runs of the comic in 3 short volumes, which I sell at cons, and online. But they’re expensive to print, and so they’re also expensive for people buy!

This kickstarter is to raise money to print professional-quality, perfect-bound, softcover books of the whole finished comic.  Plus, it includes 30+ pages of new watercolors and stories about the second trip I took to Iceland, a year later. And that’s not even to mention the Icelandic glossary, and pronunciation guide!

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6. The Little Comic That Could – A Conversation about How a Graphic Novel from a Small Publisher Achieved a Film Adaption [Interview]

After learning about a comic-to-movie adaption not familiar to most, I spoke with Peter Simeti, the president of the Diamond-distributed Alterna Comics whose graphic novel The CHAIR was recently adapted into an indie film. I was curious about how a book from a smaller publisher gained the attention of filmmakers and was able to fund a full-length movie. Read the answers I received below to get a sense of the kind of conditions that can lead an indie comic book or graphic novel to a turn on the big screen.

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Can you describe the graphic novel version of The CHAIR in your own words?

In terms of the plot, it’s a psychological horror/thriller that revolves around a man who believes he’s innocent of the crimes he’s been convicted of and his struggle to survive against a sadistic and psychotic prison warden and his guards. But the story itself has strong themes of isolation, the ethics of torture, morality, child abuse, domestic violence, fate and the demons of one’s past.

The CHAIR was released through Alterna Comics, where you’re the publisher. Can you describe its business model?

Alterna is a creator-owned company, similar to many other independent comic publishers. We’ve been around since 2006 (celebrating Year 10 very soon!) and in that time I’ve had the pleasure of working with over 100 talented individuals; it’s been an amazing experience.

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What was the reception like to The CHAIR when it was first released?

Back in 2008 when the compiled graphic novel was released, I remember that it did fairly well. Nothing huge or record-breaking, but it did good for a small press indie book. The coolest part, to me, was that people really seemed to enjoy it and, more importantly, they understood it. It’s a bit of a heady, trippy, downer of a book, so I’m glad that people have taken a liking to it.

Who’s behind the movie adaption? What experience do they have in filmmaking?

Chad Ferrin is the director of the film and along with myself, Erin Kohut (who wrote the screenplay), Zebadiah DeVane (Executive Producer), and Kyle Hester (Producer) — we all helped to champion this story into being made into a film. I encourage everyone to visit The CHAIR’s IMDb page for information on our cast and crew.

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How did they learn about the graphic novel, and what made it appealing to them to adapt for film?

Erin adapted the graphic novel for film (she edited the graphic novel, so of course she did a great job on the screenplay) and we pitched it to Chad Ferrin about 2 years ago. He liked the story, characters, and writing a lot – so we moved forward from that point. Chad’s previous films shared similar themes to the ones found in The CHAIR – psychological elements and stories that were ripe in metaphor.

The original Kickstarter wasn’t able to hit a funding goal of $300,000 to make The CHAIR. You successfully funded a second campaign with a $40,000 goal. How were you able to lower the budget so drastically?

Well, because of the original Kickstarter, we actually attracted many private investors that supplemented our budget. We figured out that we only needed about $140K in reality to get production going, so we worked around those numbers to hit our production goal.

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Did you have a chance to visit the set while The CHAIR was being filmed?

No! Unfortunately I was snowed in, in Massachusetts during the two weeks of filming in Los Angeles. We had a historically horrible winter here; just my luck right? [Laughs]

What kinds of restrictions did a shoestring budget put on the production?

We had to be creative with a lot of things, especially our use of space. Luckily 75% of the film takes place on death row, so it was “easy” to keep location costs down. Producer Kyle Hester did a great job on bringing along some amazingly talented people on board; I can’t thank them enough for the terrific job they did bringing this film to life.

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Can you describe how the rights were negotiated? What does a contract look like for a smaller budget independent film?

Well, I’m the majority rights holder of the film. It wasn’t sold or optioned, it’s as indie as it gets! We’ve got private investors and everyone gets a piece of the pie, but there’s no big studio involved here, even though there’s many well-known actors involved (all of which, are super nice people and incredibly talented as well).

How can a comic book creator who isn’t necessarily in the mainstream get the attention of filmmakers?

By asking and showing your work! I say this all the time – you can have the greatest story/song/piece of art ever made, but if no one knows about it, then it’ll stay that way until you put it out there. If you’re a creator, share your creations!

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What’s next for The CHAIR?

We’ll be having another crowdfunding campaign, this time on Indiegogo for post-production funds (editing, sound design, music, color correct), in late April. For details on that, I recommend everyone stay tuned on Twitter by following @theCHAIRhorror, @alternacomics, and @petersimeti.

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7. Crowdwatch: Anarchists and criminals in ‘The Illegalists’ by Vogel, Pierce and Futaki

Sponsored post

We often get requests to promote Kickstarter campaigns here at the Beat, and not all of them are things that people would actually buy. But here’s one that boasts a top notch creative team—Attila Futaki, artist of Severed and the best selling Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief; colorist Greg Guilhaumond (Severed); and letterer Todd Klein (everything ever)—and an intriguing backdrop of 1911 Paris and based on the true story of Jules Bonnot, a mechanic turned anarchist. The book is with dream project of writer Stefan Vogel and co-writer Laura Pierce. As explained on the Kickstarter page:

I first discovered ‘The illegalists’ a.k.a ‘The Bonnot Gang’ in London’s oldest radical bookstore ‘Housmans’ in 2009. What struck me most was, they weren’t just ‘criminals’, they were anarchists. They had strong anti-establishment beliefs, fighting low wages and the 12 hour work day; a lot of them were blacklisted for draft dodging and unable to work. Paris in 1911 was a city of riots, strikes and savage repression. These anarchists evolved into illegalists because they had no other choice – they stole to survive. I was reminded of the final scene from the film “I’m a fugitive from a chain gang” Where Paul Muni meets his girlfriend to tell her he’s leaving town, she asks ‘But how will you live? And as he slips into the darkness, unseen, he responds ‘I steal’.

The campaign has quite a ways to go — £9000 has been raised of the £35,000 needed to publish it. The first half of the story is complete, the equivalent of three US comics, or one European album, all funded by Stefan out of his own pocket. He has decided to try to raise funds to finish the story and self-publish it through a Kickstarter.  This is definitely a nice looking project, and deserves a look, so check it out.

Vogel provided the following synopsis with sample art. (Disclaimer: he also purchased an advertising campaign on the Beat, and I agreed to run a longer post on it after seeing the quality of the project.)

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THE ILLEGALISTS

A Graphic Novel Based on True Events

 

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             Jules Bonnot                              Jean Dubois

        

Preview of ‘THE ILLEGALISTS’ drawn by Attila Futaki (‘Severed’ by Scott Snyder) written by Stefan Vogel & Laura Pierce, coloured by Greg Guilhaumond (‘Severed’) and lettered by Todd Klein (‘Sandman’).

Set in Paris 1911, against a backdrop of thieves, bohemians and anarchists; a struggling mechanic is forced into crime, becoming France’s most dangerous and wanted man.

 

Jules Bonnot, an underpaid and overworked mechanic.

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After a co-worker is injured and cast aside by the factory, Jules attends a subversive meeting which organizes strikes..


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After much talk of revolution…

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Jules is badly beaten…

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and arrested.

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His life of Crime begins…

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8. Interview: Jeff McComsey Talks Going to War with the Latest FUBAR Kickstarter

The FUBAR comic books might not be familiar to the traditional Wednesday Warrior, but they’re a major player in the growing zombie and anthology markets. Even though the one time it strayed from its anthology roots its Kickstarter raised over $95,000, FUBAR is committing to sharing a selection of short stories by a variety of creators. Next up are FUBAR: By The Sword and FUBAR: Declassified, exploring zombies during different periods of wartime. I spoke to the founder of FUBAR Press and major contributor to the series, Jeff McComsey, about crowdfunding the two graphic novels.

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Art by Steve Becker.

Congrats on the success of the new Kickstarter! Did the stories collected in this campaign start before or after FUBAR: Mother Russia?

The stories in By The Sword and most of Declassified have been a long time coming. We’ve been publishing quite a few By The Sword stories as issues first, in the two-issue miniseries FUBAR: By the Sword and then in the Guts & Glory one-shot. Mother Russia’s success moved back the Kickstarter for By The Sword just because we needed a little more time to wrap up that campaign.

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From FUBAR: By The Sword. Art by Chris Peterson. Story by Shawn Aldridge.

What made special ops and the periods of history covered in By The Sword the logical next projects for FUBAR?

The Special Ops stories are mostly made up of stuff Steve [Becker] and I wanted to draw and we just kind of came up with a reason afterwards. By The Sword was a natural extension of our American history volume. Plus we wanted to draw some swords and shields [laughs].

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From FUBAR: Special Ops. Art by Steve Becker. Story by Jeff McComsey.

You’ve covered so much of world history at this point. What’s left to explore next?

We’ve got a whole music-themed issue that has already been unlocked as a stretch goal for the current campaign. After that, who knows!

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FUBAR: Mother Russia. Art by Steve Becker.

All the FUBAR campaigns have done well, but what do you think made the Mother Russia Kickstarter in particular such a huge success?

Well, I think the standalone story nature versus the anthology is one aspect. Another would be I think it’s a neat story that we were able to convey with the little info you can when doing a Kickstarter. Kickstarter was also kind enough to feature us in one of their “Projects We Love” email blast and that really set the campaign off.

I wrote a piece awhile back about how Kickstarter was making anthologies possible again, but the standalone long form nature definitely seemed to have been a positive factor for Mother Russia. Has it made you consider doing more graphic novels?

I always have one or two ideas for OGNs going at all times. I have a few projects I’ll be finishing up until summer but after that, if something crazy doesn’t come up, I’ll be working on one of those OGN ideas.

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American Terror by Jeff McComsey.

FUBAR-related or no?

Well, Mother Russia 2 is one of them. I have a pretty fleshed out idea about where things go after the first volume. American Terror is another option. I also have a hankering to do a bio comic.

Would you use Kickstarter for all of those?

Most definitely. I plan to Kickstart projects until people stop backing them.

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From FUBAR: Special Ops. Art by Steve Becker. Story by Jeff McComsey.

How do you think your career would be different without Kickstarter?

It’s hard to say, but I certainly wouldn’t have been able to get nearly as many books on the shelf.

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Alterna Comics.

What makes Alterna Comics a good partner for FUBAR?

Alterna has a great business model for small press creators that are willing to help push their work. Alterna gets us into shops, book stores, ComiXology. It’s up to us to then get people to pick up those books and enjoy them.

At this point, after some really impressive Kickstarters, how much would you say FUBAR is a business and how much of it is a hobby for you and other contributors?

I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me it’s a business. Publishing, Kickstarters and all the other ephemera that pops up is itself a full-time job. Then I still have to get freelance work done. It can be tough. My love/need of drawing comics is only seconded by my love/need to publish/make comics.

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From FUBAR: By The Sword. Art by Chris Peterson. Story by Shawn Aldridge.

Check out the latest FUBAR Kickstarter, which ends Sunday night. Follow Jeff at his website and on Twitter.

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9. A Game of Thrones Art Book is Featured on Kickstarter

Art director Grace Fong and her team hope to raise $18,500 for an art book called Draw ‘Em With the Pointy End. More than 100 artists contributed pieces inspired by George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice & Fire books and the Game of Thrones HBO series. We’ve embedded a video about the project above.

Here’s more from the Kickstarter page: “This is a non-profit project. The campaign pays for printing 500 books and compensates the artists at a flat rate – but every dollar past our goal will be used to print even more! These additional copies will go towards non-profit organizations that benefit wolves and wildlife.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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10. Review: ‘Lady Sabre’ Kickstarter Package Delivers

By Matt O’Keefe

After backing the campaign last June, I was extremely pleased to receive a shipment in December containing my reward from the Kickstarter for Lady Sabre, a webcomic created by Greg Rucka, Rick Burchett and Eric Newsom. It took twelve months longer than anticipated to get my copy, but the creative team delivered a very special edition that perfectly suits its source material. Not only that, Kickstarter stretch goals also unlocked a Pocket Guide written by Rucka about the world where Lady Sabre takes place, a process book that illuminates how Greg and Rick work together and other extras. Below is my review of that package.
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Lady Sabre & the Pirates of the Ineffable Aether Book 1: The Map begins with a prose story called “The Affair of the Mickten Clockwork” that sets up the relationship between Lady Seneca Sabre and Captain Hans von Kater. Rucka is a well-seasoned writer of novels, with a library that includes the Attius Kodiak and Jad Bell series as well as two Queen & Country books. More people should be reading Greg Rucka’s prose, and this short story and the worldbuilding material in the back of the volume will likely convince them to do exactly that. At the same time, Rucka should be writing more prose like this. It’s easily among my favorite I’ve read.
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Book 1 of the Lady Sabre series is very much the start of a longer story, but it’s an impressive introduction to what I presume is the main cast. Chapter 1 dives straight into one of Sabre’s escapades, which includes a grand theft and duel with Hans. There isn’t a ton of story in the first chapter, necessarily, but you get a lot of atmosphere out of those pages, especially if you read “The Affair of the Mickten Clockwork” beforehand.
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Chapters 2 and 4 introduce us to Marshall Miles Drake and Tracket Keyton Drum, also through elaborate action sequences. While giving Burchett more chances to shine, Rucka also shows his writing chops with clever back-and-forths and a demonstration of the pair’s bold heroism. Chapter 3 sets up the larger storyline with the very convenient but appropriate appearance of a prophet, who predicts some of the danger lying ahead.
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Chapter 5 is the first time Drake and Sabre get to interact. The tension between a man of law and a woman of lawlessness is a fun dynamic, and the rapport we get between them is one of the highlights of the volume. Their acquisitions from previous chapters reveal the instrument for the larger story. I’m also intrigued to see that move forward, but it’s a testament to Rucka’s writing and Burchett’s illustrations that I’m most excited for the palpably tense relationship between Sabre and Drake to continue.
Part of me wants to complain that Lady Sabre is decompressed, especially given all of its action sequences, but I think the only reason I feel that way is that I want more of it sooner. The story is not text-heavy and each page has a relatively low panel count, but, in spite of that, though, every page feels significant. I may believe that in part because I’m aware of the original 2-pages-a-week format, but it’s clear that Rucka and Burchett went out of their way to make sure every one of their updates mattered. I’m hoping that future volumes of Lady Sabre also contain prose stories so readers can get more background and plot a little faster, but it’s hard to complain about the pacing of the comic itself. I don’t know how long Rucka and Burchett intend Lady Sabre to go so this volume could either be the first step of the hero’s journey or the entire first act. Either way, I know I’m on board until the ship lands.
Rick Burchett’s art isn’t flashy, which might be why he and Rucka couldn’t initially find a publisher for a project. Flashiness, though, is overrated. Burchett’s art is high quality in every panel; he never fails to deliver the goods. His solid storytelling skills are something the flashier artists should take note of.
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I read that Burchett said that he was nervous about working with Rucka on Lady Sabre because he “can’t draw beautiful women,” but beauty is relative. He isn’t drawing pinup models, no, but for my money the personality he imbues in Sabre and other characters makes them more “attractive” than any two-dimensional characters gorgeously drawn by a Frank Cho or Terry Dodson or Adam Hughes. Greg Rucka is known for writing powerful women, and Rich Burchett compliments Rucka’s development of Sabre with a powerful, non-exploitative depiction.
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As a veteran of superhero comics, Rick could probably have delivered satisfactory action sequences with relative ease. But he doesn’t rest on his laurels, offering up innovating action in several of the first five chapters. The swordplay early on in Chapter One is particularly excellent, from the motion lines when the blades swing to pages that feature Sabre’s epic duel with Hans.
I believe Lady Sabre is the first comic Rick colored, which is pretty impressive. The color choices don’t astound, but it’s never a distraction. That’s more than I can say for some of the comics being released by major publishers, and I only expect Burchett’s coloring to improve over time.
The next thing I want to address is the pocket guide included with the Kickstarter package. The amount of worldbuilding done in the mouthful-of-a-title Edwin Windsheer’s Pocket Guide to the Sphere: The Odom (Part 1): Allyria & Fueille is absolutely staggering. To the best of my knowledge, Rucka didn’t really get compensated for these 64 pages that help you further understand the world of Sabre. If anything, it probably cost money due to printing While tiny, the hardcover book is definitely readable, though I admit I prefer viewing it as a PDF on my tablet to reading the hardcover itself. Even with that in mind, if I ever lost the pocket guide my collection would feel woefully incomplete. It’s beautifully designed, and is a wonderful companion to the main book.
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There’s not a whole lot to say about the process book other than that it demonstrates the effort Rucka and Burchett put into Sabre. The paperback includes annotations by Greg and early design sketches by Rick, immersing you into their (obviously effective) creative process. Watching the project come together and move forward is something special to behold. I hope they offer a copy of the book on their website eventually, so more would-be webcomic creators and creators of comics in general can learn a thing or two.
The design of all three books is one of the best parts of the package. I pledged for the least expensive edition, and it still largely failed to feel cheap. As beautiful as the cover is, I particular love the the look of the graphic novel without the dust jacket. The only real flaw I can point to is the back insert. The pouch and the map felt sort of jutted out. I actually ended up peeling off the pouch, which thankfully caused minimal damage to the book. To be fair, though, the map and pouch were part of a stretch goal that the team didn’t even reach, and the map itself is great, so it’s hard to complain too much.
Lady Sabre is, to date, the 23rd most successful comic book Kickstarter campaign ever, but I highly doubt it was anywhere near the 23rd most profitable. Rucka and company were extremely generous to offer so many upgrades to already-impressive rewards, especially for a price as low as $30 for print copies of the first volume, the Pocket Guide and the Process Book. At some point the creative team plans to offer remaining copies of the book on the Lady Sabre website. I would highly encourage you to buy them while you can.
Rating: Worth The Wait

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11. 21st Century TANK GIRL will be published by Titan in June

21st_Century_Tank_Girl_1_Cover_ATitan announced today they are serializing the Kickstarter-funded 21st Century Tank Girl, which saw artist and Co-creators Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin returning to the character which made them famous in the 80s and 90s.

Last April, the Tank Girl Kickstarter campaign smashed it’s intended goal of $94, 839, raising nearly $300k to fund Hewlett and Martin’s return to the franchise. The project also brings on board celebrated indie artists Philip Bond and Jim Mahfood. From Titan:

TITAN PUBLISHES THE KICKSTARTER SENSATION 21ST CENTURY TANK GIRL!

This June, Titan Comics are excited to announce they are serializing Kickstarter Smash Hit 21st Century Tank Girl!

After a break of more than 20 years, artist extraordinaire Jamie Hewlett has returned to the
iconic character which made his name. Co-created in the late 80s by Hewlett and writer Alan Martin, Tank Girl quickly became a household name and revolutionized British comics industry. This landmark publication reunites the two collaborators for all-new original material!

Titan will publish 21st Century Tank Girl as a 3 issue mini-series written by Martin and illustrated by a stellar line-up of stalwarts and newcomers including Philip Bond (Kill Your Boyfriend), Jim Mahfood (Miami Vice), Brett Parson, Jonathan Edwards, Warwick Johnson Cadwell, Craig Knowles and more!

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21st Century Tank Girl #1 will be issued with two Jamie Hewlett covers, and will be ready for pre-orders in the April edition of PREVIEWS.

Are you excited for Tank Girl’s return? Let us know in the comments!

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12. Kickwatch: please consider supporting Elf by Songgu Kwon, a crazy comic about fantasy gaming

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33 hours, $4000 — you people need to do this.

Songgu Kwon is a former Xeric grant winner for Blanche the Baby Killer. He currently works in the animation business doing things like character designs for Metalocalypse. I daresay, he draws like a melon farmer. Gorgeous stuff.

He also has a long running webcomic called Elf that takes on RPG tropes in a weird and wacky way.

Imaging Knights of the Dinner Table drawn by Cliff Chiang. Sort of.

Anyway he has a kickstarter for acollected edition that needs only $4000 dollars in 33 hours. A little about it.

Elf is a fantasy web comic that I started in 2012 as a fun project that I could develop little by little, uploading just one page a week.  

It began as a series of short vignettes centered around an archetypical Tolkienesque elf character and her talking wombat sidekick, Clarence.  A rather strange fellow named Pieter would soon join them.

Clarence is no ordinary wombat.  He’s really of a subspecies I like to call… the Greater Wombat!

The initial strips were conceived with very little planning.  I wanted to poke fun at and pay homage to the high fantasy genre as represented in countless books, films, video games, and my own experiences playing table top RPGs in the days of my youth.





In a nutshell, Elf is a story about a warrior called Blackfeather, who just wants to hang out with her pals, help others, and have adventures.  This simple goal comes with many obstacles as deadly perils as well as the elf’s own past crash into her path.

 
I think the art speaks for itself.

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Let’s do this people!

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13. Fresh Romance on Kickstarter

Janelle Asselin is trying to raise $28,000 on Kickstarter to fund the first three issues of a new monthly digital romance comics magazine called Fresh Romance.

The publication aims to bring romance to the comics with modern characters. Each monthly issue will feature three full color comics stories. Each story will also be released in its own eBook collection. The creators will own their work and will be paid a royalty. The more money they raise, the more they will pay their writers.

Check it out:

For every $10,000 we go over our goal, every single creator currently signed on to publish a story with Rosy Press will get a 15% page rate bump (so, at $48,000 everyone would get a 30% page rate bump and at $58,000 everyone would get a 45% page rate bump, etc).

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14. Kickstarter’s new Spotlight feature: an ongoing storefront for creators

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A Kickstarter is a little like having a baby in only 31 days, You put all your efforts into the birth, but then what happens to the baby? Well now we’ll get to see the kids grow up and go to school. Kickstarter is enabling creators to showcase more of what happens to projects after the initial funding ends with a new “Spotlight” feature that launches today. All creators with funded projects will now be able to manage the page to present a view of their work, with huge graphics, an inviting look, an attractive new timeline feature that can share the creator’s story at a glance, and links that can go anywhere—so buy buttons and links to ongoing projects can be added.

And for those who like to see how the project got made, the original Kickstarter page will still be archived in a tab called “Story.”

Since Kickstarter ages are often top search results, this is a good way to promote the finished project and later developments and direct buyers to a place to purchase related projects.

For instance here’s how the old pages looked:

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And how they’ll look now:

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As you can see it’s a huge improvement and a perfect showcase for further interaction and sales. For comics people where Kickstarter pages are already a hub of activity, this can effectively become a storefront. Kickstarter has a very creator-oriented philosophy and this is a strong indication of how they’re implementing that going forward.

 

And here’s a video:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7KLTEWL8S4

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15. Elvish Linguistics Learning Tool on Kickstarter

Adion Designs is hoping to raise $4000 on Kickstarter to build an interactive reading tool for Sindarin Elvish and any fictional or existing language.

The open source tool will consolidate all of Tolkien’s notes to present a clear picture of NeoSindarin’s syntax. The goal is to help readers, teachers and linguists decode the language. Ultimately the app will form a public online library of translated texts using this software.

Check it out: “We want to build…The most intuitive user interface for composing, reading and decoding language. We believe even languages such as the Sindarin of Tolkien’s Elves can be revitalized and learned by thousands more with the right learning tool. A tool that gives you everything you need to know, in one place.”

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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16. Kickstarter Funded 2,064 Publishing Projects in 2014

Kickstarter LogoKickstarter funded 2,064 publishing projects and 158 journalism endeavors last year.

The crowd sharing company revealed some stats from 2014, revealing that 3.3 million people from all over the globe pledged more than half a billion dollars to help finance some 22,252 creative projects. Reading Rainbow was one of the most backed projects of the year with 105,857 backers contributing more than $5.4 million.

Interestingly Wednesday was the most popular day to pledge and March 12, 2014 11 AM-12 PM EST was the hour when backers pledged the most amount of money of the year. That hour saw $400,000 in pledges. It also happens to be within 24 hours of when Neil Young launched his Pono project.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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17. Image Does Humble Bundle Once Again

humble3 300x269 Image Does Humble Bundle Once Again

By Bruce Lidl

Lost somewhat in the initial burst of news from last week’s ImageExpo was the announcement of a new Image Humble Bundle offering, beginning that morning and lasting until January 21. The “Humble Image Comics Bundle 2: Image Firsts” is a massive collection of digital comics that can be purchased for whatever price the consumer chooses. Included in the basic bundle are the beginning issues of a number of recent series, including Alex + Ada, Deadly Class, C.O.W.L., Elephantmen 2260 Book One, Minimum Wage, God Hates Astronauts, Genius, and Satellite Sam. Paying at least $15 also gets you the slightly higher profile titles The Manhattan Projects, The Wicked + The Divine, The Fuse, Velvet, Sex Criminals, Wytches, The Walking Dead Vol. 22: A New Beginning (#127-132), The Fade Out #1, Nailbiter, Stray Bullets, Southern Bastards, and Shutter. And finally, a stretch price of $18 brings The Walking Dead Compendium One (#1-48), East of West: The World, and Saga Book One (#1-18). For anybody at all interested in Image brand comics, the price truly cannot be beat, especially as the retail price of the comics would be over $300 according to Humble Bundle. Also, purchasers are strongly encouraged to mark a portion of their price paid towards charity, in this case the comics creator focused Hero Initiative. As of this evening, the Image bundle has generated almost $318,000, with over five days left to go.

The current offering is the third Humble Bundle to include Image titles. The first time Humble Bundle included any digital comics was the Image bundle in April 2014 that generated almost $400,000 revenue in two weeks, with titles including Saga, Walking Dead, Fatale, Invincible and Chew. Image imprint Skybound also did a special Comic-Con Humble Bundle in July 2014 as well, which was almost entirely Kirkman based titles such as The Walking Dead, Invincible, Thief of Thieves, and Super Dinosaur. That bundle alone generated $232,000.

Other comic publishers that have released Humble Bundles since April include Dark Horse, Oni, Dynamite, BOOM!, IDW, Top Shelf and Valiant. According to Kelley Allen, Director of Books for Humble Bundle, comics publishers are eager to work with them, and she has a number of ebook and comics bundles planned in 2015 alongside Humble Bundle’s traditional gaming focused offerings. The average revenue number for the comics based bundles so far has been $288,000 for the 14 day period. According to Allen, non-gaming bundles allow Humble to “break out from their core gaming audience” but from the comics perspective, they can also create “enormous crossover” by getting great comics in front of the very large Humble Bundle community. With a very clearly defined, and devoted, young male demographic, Humble Bundle chooses comics with both a logical appeal, like Transformers, Star Wars and The Walking Dead, but Allen also curates high quality titles that may stretch demographic borders. She “pushed very hard” to include titles like Sex Criminals in the latest Image bundle, trusting the Humble Bundle audience to appreciate an outstanding title, even without prior awareness.

humble1 222x300 Image Does Humble Bundle Once Again

While the Humble Bundles may help expand the reach of digital comics, they are also helping to encourage comics publishers to feel comfortable with forgoing DRM protections for their products. Humble Bundles, regardless of content, gaming or ebooks, do not use Digital Rights Management anti-copying technologies, both for philosophical reasons and from a practical standpoint. As Allen pointed out, why use DRM when the consumer could theoretically decide to purchase the content for one cent in any case? Even Dark Horse, which has been very reluctant to forgo DRM generally, was convinced to try not using it for their big Star Wars themed Humble Bundle in October and was rewarded with sales over $375,000 for the two week offering.

Fundamentally, the Humble Bundle “pay what you want” approach reflects exactly the insights independent game developers have learned over the years in regards to digital sales. Since their products are almost universally available to be pirated, often in formats that are actually *more* user friendly than the official versions, game creators have learned to embrace the concept of giving customers compelling reasons to purchase, in the recognition that they do not have to anymore. Distribution options like Steam and Humble Bundle provide explicit value beyond what a pirated version can give, whether through ease of use, personal connection to the creators, community recognition, charitable giving, etc. The Humble Bundle experiment really leverages the unique potential of digital distribution, as the pay what you want model could not really scale in a system that necessitated fulfillment and postage charges. With this almost “donation” type model there is no extra expense for the seller after the first sale, everything after that is essentially “profit.” And the possibility that the new readers exposed to the material may become fans, and go on to make further purchases, even print purchases in local comic books stores, only heightens the value of the Humble Bundle offering. We are likely to see a number of interesting comics based bundles in 2015 and we will learn if this kind of non-traditional sales can become a significant portion of publishers’ revenue, in much the same way digital has already established itself recently.

1 Comments on Image Does Humble Bundle Once Again, last added: 1/16/2015
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18. Swedish Novelist Launches Kickstarter Campaign For an English Translation Project

Writer Ingrid Rudefors hopes to raise kr40,000 (roughly $4,850 USD) to finance an English translation of her novel, Samtidigt på ett tak i Chinatown (Meanwhile on a Roof in Chinatown in English). We’ve embedded a video about the project above—what do you think?

Here’s more about the project: “We are launching Phase I of our vision with this Kickstarter campaign, designed to raise the money to fund the English translation and e-publishing of Ingrid’s novel. Originally published by Isaberg förlag in 2011 in Swedish as Samtidigt på ett tak i Chinatown, the book has been very well received by the Swedish-reading public.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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19. Templesmith Does Lovecraft

by Pamela Auditore

Anyone familiar with Spike TV Scream Award Winner and New York Times Bestselling Artist/Writer Ben Templesmith’s work knows he is profoundly influenced by HP Lovecraft. Even a cursorary glance at his art makes this apparent. Lovecraft’s influence is most directly on display in Templesmith’s most recent graphic novel Squidder.  A tale of a one time warrior doing battle and eluding the common place acolytes who’ve accepted the Dark Cephlopod Gods as their own.

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But now, the marriage is official!

Templesmith will be tackling Lovecraft himself, the horror master who has influenced creators for nearly a century, including Mike Mignola, Nic Pizzolatto (“True Detective”) and GRR Martin.

In an e-mail yesterday, Templesmith, announced he is temporarily forgoing a sequel to Squidder, for an adaption of HP Lovecraft’s “DAGON.” “A proto-Chuthullu story,” as the Kickstarter page calls it.

Dagon

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As Templesmith tells it:

“‘DAGON’ is the first Lovecraft story I ever read… and is just oozing in mood and fear [sic]…so I figured I’d turn the visuals it gives me in to a deluxe graphic novella. I finally get to handle some of the unspeakable horrors of Lovecraft, especially because it’s the 125th anniversary of his birth.”

Templesmith also says he will be working on Fell, and is in talks with Warren Ellis for more issues of Wormwood.

3 Comments on Templesmith Does Lovecraft, last added: 2/13/2015
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20. CursiveLogic Workbook: KICKSTARTER

Linda Shrewsbury has raised more than $28,000 for the CursiveLogic workbook.

It has been a trend as of late for educators to eliminate cursive handwriting from their school curiculums. Shrewsbury hopes to address this issue with this book. The money from this campaign will be used to cover the costs of development and printing. We’ve embedded a video about the project above.

Here’s more from the Kickstarter page: “Cursive handwriting is becoming a lost art. With the near universal use of word processing and ever-increasing pressures on classroom time, many schools have removed cursive from the curriculum. Why, they ask, should students learn to write in cursive in the age of tablets and iPhones? While electronic devices have added an element of convenience to the writing process, evidence is mounting that putting pen to paper has benefits that typing cannot replace.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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21. Shay & Ivy: More Than Just a Princess Picture Book: Kickstarter

Sheena McFeely hopes to raise $8,000 on Kickstarter to create a book called Shay & Ivy: More Than Just a Princess. She is working with freelance illustrator Casie Trace and branding expert Manny Johnson on this children’s book.

The funds will be used to cover the costs of producing the book and developing an app version. The app edition will feature interactive videos done in both American Sign Language and English. We’ve embedded a video about the project above.

Here’s more from the Kickstarter page: “At the end of day if a child wants to be a princess. that’s alright. If a child wants to be more than just a princess, that’s great too. As long you follow your heart, do not give in to society’s pressures in being someone else, and be truly the happiest of all. That’s the goal of this book – to spark girls and even boys’ imaginations to go beyond a kingdom or an aisle to define themselves.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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22. Ryan Cody discusses ‘Doc Unknown’ Kickstarter success

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Doc Unknown created by Fabian Rangel Jr & Ryan Cody.

Fabian Rangel Jr. and Ryan Cody debuted Doc Unknown # 1  two years ago, and the project was financed entirely by Fabian out of pocket. They launched a Kickstarter project to fund BOSS SNAKE: Cold Blood, Cold Streets. The duo raised $7,540 to fund the project based on a character from the introductory issue, but the fruitful Kickstarter ventures put the creators on the map and helped with further projects with IDW and Dark Horse. Fabian and Cody raised $12,250 to publish DOC UNKNOWN: Winter of the Damned & other. The second Doc Unknown kickstarter project offered a number of enticing rewards that made publishing the comic with a cover by The Goon’s Eric Powell that much sweeter.

Third time’s the charm? The ambitious creators are attempting to fund their final installment of the series:

DOC UNKNOWN: THE WAR FOR GATE CITY is a 104 page graphic novel collecting the final four issues of supernatural pulp series DOC UNKNOWN. The third and final volume will be 94 pages of new story, featuring an introduction from ED BRISSON (SHELTERED, CLUSTER, MURDERBOOK) an afterword by me (Fabian Rangel Jr) and will include a pin-up gallery featuring MATT SMITH (BARBARIAN LORD), ALEXIS ZIRITT (SPACE RIDERS) LOGAN FAERBER (OH, KILLSTRIKE), DAVID RUBIN (THE RISE OF AURORA WEST), and MIKE MIGNOLA (HELLBOY)!

The series has raised (not taking account the Kickstarter and Amazon fees) $19,790. So, it’s safe to say they know what their doing when it comes to launching a successful Kickstarter, following through a quality product and rewards. I had a conversation with my Southern Arizona dive bar drinkin’ buddy and AMCE director, Ryan, about the success of the series, what to expect from DOC UNKNOWN: THE WAR FOR GATE CITY, and offers advice to Kickstarter comic creators.

Henry Barajas: Let’s cut to the chase. You and Fabian have raised $19,790 for this series. You’re already over 50% of goal. What’s your fuckin’ secret?!

Ryan Cody: Our backers are comic and pulp adventure fans who appreciate the world we’ve built. I think we really built on a successful first volume and good reviews and word of mouth. Doc Unknown Vol.1 was totally financed by Fabian on his own, then we did a small Kickstarter for a spin-off one-shot featuring Boss Snake and the enthusiasm was overwhelming. We noticed that there could be a market for more of these characters and Volume 2 of Doc was funded via Kickstarter within two days and did incredibly well. By delivering on time a high quality product, we eliminate any fear backers may have, and they in turn feel confident in telling their friends about it. It’s very grass roots and organic.

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“New Boss Snake one-shot cover by ABE SAPIAN artist MAX FIUMARA with colors by DAVE STEWART!”

 

Barajas: Without giving anything away, what can backers expect in the last Doc Unknown adventure?

Cody: Everything. It will reward long time readers and include practically every character we’ve seen before. All of our villains are banding together to take out Doc. It’s also welcoming to new readers as the book is designed to be very accessible. There are alternate universes, magic, science, fish monsters, motorcycles, explosions, ghosts, lasers and plenty of punching. What else could you possibly want in a comic book?

Barajas: I noticed some big names are doing some pin ups of the character. How does it feel to see your character reimagined by someone like Hellboy creator Mike Mignola?

I was floored when Fabian told me. These guys are really busy with their own work, so the fact that they will take time out of their schedules to draw a character Fabian and I created is pretty amazing. Volume Two had Scott Godlewski and James Harren pin-ups in it, two of my personal favorite artists, and now to have someone like Mignola drawing a character I designed is absolutely nuts. It’s really cool and it’s fair to say he’s one my biggest influences. I think it just shows how timeless and fun our book is, it has a bit of everything we all loved growing up in it.

Barajas: What are some things you’ve noticed with unsuccessful kickstarter comic book projects?

Cody: I think there are two major factors in why kickstarters can fail. #1 is poor production and art. If your comic does not look like it could stand up with other books on the shelf, it’s probably not ready and the art and story is probably not up to par. Poor design, coloring and lettering can make even a good artist look like an amateur. The other reason I see is people asking for way too much money. The theory on these Doc Unknown books is to ask for the absolute minimum and then hope it makes considerably more than that to actually cover all the expenses. I think Fabian has really done well planning them out that way.

Rewards include shirts, sketch cards by Ryan Cody, digital comics via Comixology, and thank you credits in the book.

Rewards include shirts, sketch cards by Ryan Cody, digital comics via Comixology, and thank you credits in the book.



Click here to learn more or support the project.

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23. GlobalPost Seeks Funding to Hire War Correspondents

Digital news organization GlobalPost is hoping to raise $95,000 on Kickstarter in order to hire a senior conflict correspondent and a dedicated conflict editor.

“War reporting is expensive and dangerous, yet it is vital to the public interest,” explains the project’s Kickstarter page.” We need you to help us keep it going through the financial challenges of a rapidly-changing media landscape.”

The video below explains more.

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24. Wizards of the Wild on Kickstarter!



I'm happy to announce that the game, Wizards of the Wild, for which I was one of the illustrators is now funding on Kickstarter! Click here to go to the Kickstarter page!

I had the great opportunity to participate in this fun project! I illustrated the cover, the character cards and some of the magic cards. I especially loved creating the characters! I am posting the full illustrations of the characters below. Enjoy! And please come help back the game and pass the word along! I would love to see this game be published!









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25. The Family Arcana Kickstarter Campaign Earns More Than $27K

Ninepin Press has raised more than $27,000 for The Family Arcana project. Author Jedediah Berry wrote this fiction story on a deck of cards. We’ve embedded a video about the project above.

Here’s more from the Kickstarter page: “Where Will the Money Go? Into a hole in the ground. Then we’ll dig it up and use it to cover the costs of printing and shipping the cards and other rewards, and to pay our illustrator.”

Welcome to our Kickstarter Publishing Project of the Week, a feature exploring how authors and publishers are using the fundraising site to raise money for book projects. If you want to start your own project, check out How To Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Publishing Project.

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