News news news!
It’s much sooner than I expected, but I’m ready to rock your world with an amazing update.
As many of you know, the hardest part of this whole funding campaign has been, well, asking for help. I’ve often said that I wish this had nothing to do with money, because the monetary value is of little significance to me. Yet it feels a bit like asking for handouts when I’m trying to gather support.
So, after talking with the crew at Inkshares and a lot of research and pitching, I’ve got great news.
Proceeds from The Traveller’s Cup will now be going to BuildOn—a charity that focuses on education and world literacy.
I’ve partnered with BuildOn’s adult literacy program, which helps adults in developing countries learn to read and write. We as avid readers often take the skills we have for granted. But imagine what your life would look like if you couldn’t decipher words, or even letters—if you were never expected to learn something our society considers essential. BuildOn is working to change that, and it’s a movement I want to be a part of.
Once the Quill goal is met (250 pre-orders) 25% of the proceeds that would normally go to me will be given to them. At 750 orders I’ll increase that number to 50%. The reason for the different scale is because until I get to 750 orders I am responsible for my own editing and marketing, and there are fees associated with that to make sure you readers get something of quality.
Funding on Inkshares to me was never about the money—it was about making sure this book gets into as many hands as possible. By partnering with BuildOn we’ll be able to do something good with these funds and make that happen sooner.
If you’d like to find out more about BuildOn, their website has information on their various programs.
And remember, every order counts. Your bulk orders will have a huge impact.
Thanks for being a crew I can count on.
Your Elatedly Eager and Enthusiastic Captain, -AC
Top of the Monday, Space Crew!
Today I am surprisingly awake and uncaffeinated. I know I’ve been staying on the DL a bit longer than expected. The upside is that your inboxes are no longer exploding with updates. And I’d rather not bother with downsides today, because I’m bracing myself for a lot of good news.
I’ll start with a few things I can let you know about, but there is much more to come.
First: I’ll be making a guest appearance on the SciFi Geeks Club Podcast on April 7! It’ll be airing live at 9:45pm EST, and will be available for replay after that. These guys are fantastic and well-connected with the science fiction community at large, so I’m really honoured to be a part of it.
Second: For FREE COMIC BOOK DAY this year I’ll be doing a 5-page digital issue of The Traveller’s Cup. You know how much I like to doodle, so I figured I’d put that to some better creative use. I’ve always wanted to give something away for FCBD, and it looks like this will be the year. The scene will be one of the most iconic in the story. Hint: you’ve already read it.
Between now and May 7 (FCBD) I’ll give you sneak previews and let you know where it’ll be distributed.
Third: New Backer Prizes Coming
I wanted to announce them by now, but I’ve been waiting for something to fall into place. Regardless, I will get this information to you by the end of the week, because incentives are good, and you deserve recognition for your undying support.
For rewards outside my control, did you know that recommendations via Inkshares earn you credits? When someone snags a copy of The Traveller’s Cup using the official recommendation links on the book page, you’ll end up with credits you can then use to purchase other books (or more copies of this book). Your sharing goes a long way, and we have a long way to go. If you’re part of a nerdy community or know someone who’d like a copy, use the recommendation links to spread the word!
I have so many other things I want to do and tell you about, but this will have to suffice for now.
Your Chill and Scheming Captain,-AC
Happy Weekend, Space Crew!
I’ve kept the airwaves quiet this week, but it wouldn’t be very Captainly of me not to connect again with a crew who’s gotten me this far.
Since the Nerdist contest closed I’ve done the following:
I see the rest of this funding campaign going a bit differently than it did during the Nerdist contest, primarily because I don’t have 700 friends in my crew...yet.
Of course, I am still counting on you. We have until May 5 to get to 547 more orders, and every single one of those will count. Please keep spreading the word. I’m working on getting new referral prize packages ready among other, err, things that I hope I can update you on in the next week.
Note that pre-orders no longer need to be unique. This means that if you’re someone who likes to share, feel free to pile them on. Also note that the ultimate package—the "Fleet Commander"—will get you three books at once, and could save you and your friends on shipping costs.
I’d also like to take this time to draw your attention to a couple other funding books.
Christopher Huang’s Murder at the Veteran’s Club just went live today! Chris is a writerly friend of mine and knows how to craft a mystery. If you like historical period pieces and love mystery even more, this is probably the book for you!
If you’d like to delve into something a little more on the horror side, check out JF Dubeau’s A God in the Shed. This is his second Inkshares success-to-be, and everything about this story has me excited to read it. It’s already passed the Quill goal, so it’s definitely coming out, but you can help push his orders off the tracker.
That’s it for today. When my campaign ideas start to become a real thing I’ll reveal all the secrets. Until then, please keep being part of my crew. May seems far away, but I assure you we’ll need all the time we can get to make this book boom.
Your Supremely-Secretive-Scheming-Space Captain,-AC
Top of the Evening to You, Space Crew!
First, a humungous congratulations to those who won the Nerdist contest. That would be Christopher Leone, Michael Haase, and Patrick Edwards. These guys not only have great-sounding stories, but they put in countless hours of marketing and pitching to get their books where they are today. Please consider supporting them if you haven’t already, because their books will definitely be released in the near future.
Where does that leave us? Let me break it down for you.
First of all, thank you for being the most amazing space crew that’s ever existed. I hope to get around to thanking each of you personally once I’ve had a bit of time to recover from this chaos, but for every one of you who ordered, who pitched to your friends and family, who gave me encouragement along the way—thank you so much. You just may have been a glimmer of hope on a bad day or one of many reasons to smile on a great one.
In the end we finished 6th. Which, out of 96 entries isn’t too shabby at all! I was extremely focused on the contest throughout this campaign, so I failed to explain the alternative routes. I’ll do that now. First, let’s feel good about how much we accomplished for a moment.
Now we go back to being regular Inkshares book-funders. Let me try to explain this as simply and eloquently as I can.
All the orders we’ve accumulated are going to stick around until May 5. On that date the total orders will be counted and one of three things will happen:
At 750 total orders (note: these do not have to be unique orders), the book will get the same fabulous treatment as the Nerdist contest would have provided. Full service editing, marketing, publishing, and distribution from Inkshares. This is the dream.
At 250 total orders (we’re extremely close already), we reach the "Quill goal". The book will be published via Inkshares with fewer of these fancy services.
At less than 250 total orders we won’t be published on Inkshares and you’ll all be refunded. That doesn’t mean it’s the end of the road, but that we’ll need to look at alternate routes to get my writing into your hands. That said, I believe this to be a highly unlikely scenario.
You can check the progress bar on the book page to see how we’re doing. This is us right now, at 199 total orders:
So what should you expect next? I’m gonna cut back on the daily spam until we get closer to the May deadline. It’s a bit much for me to keep up, and I have some "bigger picture" ideas of how to pull more people into the project.
In the meantime you can definitely keep sharing The Traveller’s Cup with your friends, since reaching 750 won’t be easy. If you use the recommendation links on the book page you’ll earn Inkshares credits too, which will let you pick up other people’s books.
Our ship hasn’t quite reached its destination yet, but that’s okay. We’re still a crew. And thanks to your support in this contest, we’re several pixels closer to our goal.
Heading into overdrive. Man your stations. And...we’re off!
About two hours remain in the Nerdist contest. This is it, guys. Though I’d be ecstatic to jump into third in that time, the realist in me is already onto our next steps (but go ahead and spam your friends in the name of space dragons).
Tonight I’ll send a full newsletter with any news and what we can do to make sure The Traveller’s Cup succeeds.
You guys have been the best space crew a captain could ask for, and one way or another this book is going to end up in your hands.
Your Overbearing Overlord,
Well, here it is. The last day of the Nerdist contest is upon us.
Currently we need 100 more orders to win. This is the last chance.
In your support can you reach out to a family member? A friend? A colleague? In a society filled with book enthusiasts we should be able to find people to get excited about this project.
But it’s going to take a personal effort. We’ve spammed social media to death, but have we been messaging our friends and acquaintances? And for those of you who have, let’s send out reminders that today is the last day. Every order counts.
What happens if we don’t win?That’s a question I’m trying not to think too hard about. Short answer, it’s not the end of the line. We essentially get an extension via Inkshares to the end of May to gain 750 pre-orders for the same result (editing, publishing, marketing, distribution), just outside the Nerdist collection. At 250 we still get to publish under Inkshares, but without all these lovely services. So we get some breathing room, but the challenge increases. And I don’t know about you, but I’d like to close this campaign successfully tomorrow.
ps: happy pi daypps: hand sketch today because my tablet was being unhelpful
I’m a bit under the weather today, so I apologize if this comes out incoherently. But you guys are amazing, and you’re the reason this campaign has been as successful as it has so far.
Now we’re running out of time. If we want the full publishing services of Inkshares at our disposal, we’ve got to bump ourselves up fast. The Nerdist contest will be over in two days. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover if we want to make this happen.
This process has been new for me, and it’s been a lot of trial and error. I appreciate the patience and encouragement you’ve all managed to find for me along the way, and I’m sure the future is bright for us as a crew.
But I’ve got to be real with you. I think the only shot we have left at winning this contest is to make a boom.
So I ask you to first: keep posting about this. Whatever outlets you’ve got to grow our crew, we’re gonna need. If you’re a Youtuber, your shout-outs would mean a lot. If you know a subreddit where folks might be interested, post away. Post to local groups and geek groups and guild chats and forums (do people still use forums?).
Second: keep making it personal. Word of mouth recommendations go a long way. I keep saying it, but if all of us today got one more person to place an order, our position would skyrocket.
Again, thanks for being such an amazing crew. You’re the reason I have so much hope in this story and others to come.
We’re almost out of time. With only a couple of days remaining, this is the moment that will make or break us.
I need you today. Today we will plaster The Traveller’s Cup throughout the universe, everywhere we go. Crew, I issue you this quest during the next 24 hours: commit to sharing the link on your social media channels with a personal message. Commit to telling someone you haven’t yet about this book and what you love about it. Commit to getting more copies in your household, and to talking to someone in person. We are so close to the goal I can feel it, but I can’t do it alone.
*Remember that only unique pre-orders count in the contest, so it’s more important that we get more people engaged than binge on our own copies.
Yesterday Was Amazing! I’m still blown away that Gary Whitta (Book of Eli, After Earth, The Walking Dead by Telltale Games, Abomination, and many more) and his Syndicate chose The Traveller’s Cup for his award. This is such a big deal, and I’m so humbled and honoured.You can see my fancy new badge on the book page.
Here’s the Sappy Part. You guys really are incredible. You’re the only thing keeping me going in this campaign. Sometimes it’s a bit awkward for me to pitch the book or ask people to go for a copy, and it can be even tougher to know how to thank you. I guess I do suffer from a bit of imposter syndrome, so when I get this amazing feedback from you all, I usually assume you meant to message someone else.
It can be confusing getting all of your great comments and feedback and still struggling to get up the ranks. But I’m accepting that this is what creative competition feels like. And something I’ve learned in all of this is how important it is to support our fellow creative people. Since this campaign started I’ve bought so many indie and Inkshares books I’m a little afraid to look at my credit card. But this industry is hard, and any support I can give to those who work hard is worth it.
When you support my book, it’s not just a book. You’re supporting my dream, and a goal I’ve worked countless hours and days and years to achieve. I build up anxiety everyday just preparing these newsletters. If I say the wrong thing I won’t get orders today. Or...oh my gosh; yesterday’s email had three errors in it. Now they’re gonna hate me. And yet you guys stay positive and keep me grounded.
I almost wish money weren’t part of this, because I know that for some of you $10 can be a lot to give in the name of support. And it’s never been about dollar signs for me. If you want to contribute but find it difficult, please let me know if there’s a way I can support you back.
We’ve gone from total underdog to a real contender for third place, which is all we need.
So I truly, sincerely, from the bottom of my awkward heart, thank you for being the greatest Space Crew of all time. Of all time.
Your "I have no idea what I’m doing" Captain,-AC