[[wysiwyg_imageupload:803:]]I've recently become an avid fan and follower of the crowd sourcing website Kickstarter. If you haven't heard of Kickstarter before let me provide you a brief introduction.
Kickstarter is a site for artists, filmmakers, musicians, designers, writers, illustrators, performers, and others to bring their projects to the public for crowd sourced funding. Users can choose to back projects they want to support via pledging money toward the funding goal. The great thing is that unless the funding goal is met by the end of the funding period, no money will change hands. Most projects have different funding levels, and typically each funding level may have different incentives. For example, for $5 you may get the PDF version of a comic, but for $50 you may get the PDF, a printed copy of the comics signed by the creators, and original artwork. This is a great way for creators to give back to their backers. Once funded, your going to have to be patient as most projects don't start production until after funding, which could take months before you see the fruits of your investment. Definitely an adjustment in this culture of 'give it to me now' overnight shipping.
The range of ideas and projects is almost endless. Although I've backed some gadget, book and board game projects in the past, I was happy to see that one of the main categories was comics. The vast array of different creator owned comic projects will definitely prove to have something for everyone.
To get you started, I thought I'd share some of the projects that have piqued my interest, I have funded myself, or currently keeping an eye on for future backing.
13 Legends Volume 1: "13 Legends" is a graphic novel series where the Arthurian Myths are reimagined in an alternate 1770s where the industrial revolution has come early, and the world is on the cusp of the reemergence of magic. Volume One follows the exploits of two redcoats, Arthur and Lancelot, as they fight the armies of the Venetian Republic for control of the New World. The two soldiers embark on a life-or-death mission to prevent the outright defeat of the English, and move ever closer toward their destinies, and to uncovering powers greater than the massive empires that carve up the globe.
The Only Living Boy: "The Only Living Boy" is a young adult graphic novel that tells the story of Erik Farrell, a 12-year old boy, who finds himself with alone and abandoned in a patchwork world. As the last human boy left on earth, he'll try to piece his memory back together, while trying to piece together a new life for himself.
Robot 13: "Robot 13" is a story about a robot that is pulled up from the ocean by fishermen off the coast of Spain in 1939. This robot is our Hero, and goes on a journey to discover who he is and where he came from, and along the way he is confronted by a series of Monsters from Greek Mythology that he finds himself drawn to fight against.
Five Ghosts: "Five Ghosts" follows the story of Fabian Gray, an infamous 1930’s treasure hunter who makes a living seeking out rare items for private clients. After an encounter with a strange artifact known as “the dreamstone,” Fabian finds himself possessed by five literary ghosts (Merlin, Robin Hood, Sherlock Holmes, Musashi, and Dracula) and is granted access to their unique abilities. These powers have come at a price, however: the dreamstone consumed the soul of Fabian’s closest ally, his twin sister, and has left her in a lifeless coma. Fabian now tirelessly travels the globe searching for a “cure” for her condition while trying to control his own ghostly affliction.
Lucky: "Lucky" is a 100-page graphic novel that explores horror tropes by telling a zombie story from the less human side. It tells the story of Mack, a garbage man whose life is changed forever when his typical route is disrupted by a zombie outbreak. Unable to fight off the zombies, Mack is bitten and becomes one himself. The story continues as we follow Mack on his journey as a newly turned zombie.
Kickstarter has more than just comic books to quench your pop-culture thirst. One of the non-comic projects I'm planning on backing is G.I.Joe Initiate. Being a longtime G.I.Joe fan and collector, this fan-film looks to have some great potential.
Please know, I have no connection to any of these projects whatsoever. I'm just a fan and collector like the rest of you -- and always looking out for the next great read -- showing my support for the creator owned community. For me, browsing Kickstarter is just like thumbing through the latest Previews looking for that diamond in the rough.
As these potential treasures start to trickle in over the next several months I'll keep you updated with on-going reviews.
So start browsing Cosmic Book News Readers! Change up your weekly pull list and find the next big thing in comics in the endless crowd sourced halls of Kickstarter. Be sure to share your discoveries in the comments below. I'd love to hear about what your backing.