One in Blue, the Other Green: Kickstarter Plans

© Scarlett Rugers
© Scarlett Rugers

With shipments of Beyond the Stars Beneath the Sea and A Star Filled Sea hopefully going out this week, I’m calling both Kickstarters to a close. This means I can finally sit back and take a moment to celebrate production, the beauty of the print copies and the art. The fact my spare room is now a place to sleep and not stash boxes of books and rolls of brown packing paper.

Most of the time I do my Kickstarters while manic. This isn’t great from an organisational point of view and mania tends to break any ability (which isn’t much to start with) I have with basic mathematics. As maths goes, next to PE, it was possibly my worst subject and I freely admit it. I’ve worked out I’m going to need about £2250 to get the project done. This is before any art and breaks down like this:

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I did have one plan which occurred to me, not just as a smart bonus but also as a cheap one. I could, quite easily, bundle my Zoe story Sweetness in Sorrow, at the back of OiB, tOG. The two stories intersect, with each protagonist appearing in the other’s tale, plus Sweetness has already been edited and published as part of BTSBTS. That means, aside from making the print copy a tiny bit heavier, there are no extra costs involved aside from the cost of the physical copies, which is something I can budget for.

The added bonus is people get an extra story and I can use it as the kick-off point for the relaunched Kickstarter for A World of Strange New Things (of which Sweetness is the first part). It’ll be easy enough to add in a custom Kickstarter link and time the relaunch to coincide with the physical release.

 © Scarlett Rugers
© Scarlett Rugers

My current task is, of course, to offically being my two active Kickstarters to a conclusion. This is, however, a given as I’m this close to shipping out. I’ve labelled all the labels, asked those who haven’t given me their addresses to do so. There will be, perhaps, one or two people who never get in touch. That makes me sad, especially as my autism means I like to make sure people get what what they pay for.

But there we go. I’ve done my best.

OiB, tOG is my nerxt choice for crowdfunding because it’s short and self-contained. It’s also the prequel to the final book in the Changing of the Sun trilogy and helps open up the modern period of the Ashteraiverse. It’s ultimately the story of two sisters and the problem with prophecy; as Harry Potter and Cersei Lannister learned, the moment you find yourself embroiled in one, it’s like being tied up in knots. The trick isn’t to escape, however, it’s took look for wriggle room.

Elyn is an old soul who remembers. That’s her gift. It’s not going to make her life easier, especially when her mother, Dene, the Mother of Visions, foresaw her wearing the blue of the Aian Order. Her twin sister, Kana, wearing the green of Ishvei’s priests. Of course, all her elder sibling wants is her ‘rightful’ place and the power it brings. Elyn, on the other hand, will become Regent of the Grear Kishai but she would rather run to Earth than live anywhere near Kana.

Along the way, Elyn will carve a life for herself. She will love, have a daughter and become the leader of a city’s alien population. But there will also come a day when she will have to look her sister in the eye and deal with their mother’s prophecy.

OiB, tOG is about 76k, so let’s say 80k once I’ve finished doing revisions. The novel itself is complete and will need editing, it’s something to think about Kickstarting, probably around August. This means I can hopefully have it done and with my backers by November.

This gives me plenty of time to redo the Kickstarter project page, do a video and what not. I’d love to get it done in time for a pre-Winter Kickstarter for World, even if it doesn’t start being serialised until January. At least I now have a plan for the second half of the year.

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Let’s Try This Again: The Fractured Era and The Broken World

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It has a title page, ergo it must be real!

Opening up my timeline file got the juices flowing, I’m not sure if I’m ready to actually start yet but I have ideas. I’m basically planning to write The Fractured Era and The Broken World together. However there’s also another component to this called The Divided Land, I’m not sure if it’s a novella or a story within a story (probably in TBW as Jaada, the protagonist is an author) but I do know it focuses on a war between north and south and the creation of a manufactured disease. Oh and the creation of the Atridians’ third gender, the Ubani, as well as the religion which elevated them to the state of ‘mortal gods’.

Timelining is allowing me to fill in gaps I didn’t even realise were there, wonderful spoilerific bits and pieces which allow me to answer questions I did have. Names mentioned in passing have back story, purpose and a reason for being remembered. I knew, for example, the Directorate had staged some kind of coup but had no idea why or how. Similarly, I knew the Ubani were a recent addition to the Atridian species, looked upon with derision and blamed for the near extinction of their race, but didn’t know why.

TFE and TBW are easier, both have plots revolving around the secret history of their own civilisation, a sanitised history a la 1984. Except, by the point Jaada gets involved in the second book, the dying Directorate has done such a thorough job no one has any idea what’s truth and what’s their version of history. Juran, on the other hand, is torn between his work and his curiosity about the Ubani, the worst thing anyone can develop an obsession on during the period in which he lives. That and falling in love with your best same-sex friend. Except Juran never thinks of himself as gay, he’s just in life-long love with his closest friend, something which transcends friendship and isn’t necessarily reciprocated to the same degree.

Juran, on the other hand, is torn between his work and his curiosity about the Ubani, the worst thing anyone can develop an obsession on during the period in which he lives. That and falling in love with your best same-sex friend. Except Juran never thinks of himself as gay, he’s just in life-long love with his closest friend, something which transcends friendship and isn’t necessarily reciprocated to the same degree. Juran’s story was never going to end well. Especially not as his name lives on, longer than he does, in the form of the first Atridian starship which is given his name in memorium of his work on it.

Jaada is straight but has been burned by love. Her boyfriend turned jealous and burned her books, seeing her committed to a mental hospital for the crime of loving writing more than she loved him. By the time of TBW, she’s free of him and the Hall of the Mind but the scars run deep. Now officially a resident in a city on another planet, it’s only when the newly-elected representative of her homeworld seeks her out and asks for help, recognising what Jaada is, and how she can help Atridia account for its sins in order to deal with a shiny new future.

I’m planning on posting excerpts (usually out of order) on my Patreon under the $20 tier. I’m not doing this to restrict access but I do want people to want to see this stuff. Plus the money will help me write the books, covering my expenses while I work but also giving me an audience, which is the most important part. I work better knowing people are there, that they want to read the books.

I’m looking forward to getting started, properly, on this project. I have so much rough work that now I have a stable outline, it’s going to see much scrapped but that’s not a bad thing. The story is there, it just needs transcribing and polishing.

 

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Giving Patreon a Second Chance

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I wanted a chance to really interact with my small but growing fanbase. I also wanted a place to put random short stories, pieces of short fiction and detail my novel writing process. I’m about, once my mood lifts, to start The Fractured Era and The Broken World, the Atridia Duology. I’m not normally a fan of paywalls but I also want to try a longer term form of crowdfunding, with videos and all the secrets of how I write.

Even a dollar helps so please do check out my Patreon page now. Pledges go out on the first day of the month but I’m asking for monthly amounts so a single pledge will get you a lot of content, plus having people who want to read my stuff, it keeps me motivated. Right now that can only be a good thing.

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Considering Patreon

 

Screenshot 2016-04-22 14.25.03

I’m thinking on a Patreon. I have lots of short stories and could really use the money, even if it’s nothing more than coppers. Some of the stories are stand-alones I’ve simply not been able to sell, other as Ashteraiverse stories and I find myself in need of an outlet, even though, in the past, I’ve never had much luck with Patreon.

Now though, thanks to several anthologies, I’m starting to get a name for myself and I am, sadly, broke. I hate being reliant on the state and I’m just too disabled/sick to even look at jobs (not that anyone will employ me). I certainly have no desire to go back to work full time, I just can’t do it. But crowdfunding, it offers something else that continues to intrigue me, especially if I post stories which is a nice and easy thing to do.

The trick is the followers, the people. I am going to try this as an experiment, spend the weekend updating the page. Even if I get a dollar a month from one person, it’s certainly better than nothing, right?

Edit: You can check out my Patreon by going to http://www.patreon.com/ashabardon

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