The World in the Satin Bag has moved to my new website.  If you want to see what I'm up to, head on over there!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The World in the Satin Bag Project (and Notes on The Altern Compendium)

First things first, it seems that folks were pretty divided on the projects I proposed here (to be run through Kickstarter).  The final tally was 21 to 15, with the win going to The Altern Compendium.  What this tells me is two things:

  1. Most of those who voted are slightly more interested in The Altern Compendium.
  2. Enough of you are interested in the Catnip Pete stories to warrant saving that for a future project in the event that The Altern Compendium is successful.
And you better believe that I am going to do both if I can.  I'll have as much fun writing about a talking cat detective as I will about a strange new world with a New Weird-y slant.

But I've hit a little snag in my research on running a Kickstarter campaign.  Because the basis of The Altern Compendium is to do a creative project while getting myself out of a financial pickle (two things I'd very much like to do), this means there is a bit of a time limit (before July 1st).  Unfortunately, Kickstarter does its funding through Amazon's payment program -- which apparently holds funds for 14 days before taking the customary 5-7 days to transfer said funds to a bank account.  I could run a short campaign for the project, but something tells me doing anything less than 30 days would not go over well, particularly since The Altern Compendium calls for a few thousand dollars based on my estimates (to pay for art, commissioning stories, and the incentives for funders -- limited editions of the book, etc.).

This doesn't mean that The Altern Compendium is dead.  In fact, it means I'm going to take more time to set it up, finish a map that looks professional, create a nice looking video, and other things that will help make the project a success.  It means I'm just pushing it back and opting for more immediate things.

This is where the second part of the title comes in.  If you recall in this post, I mentioned that I wanted to rewrite The World in the Satin Bag and re-release it as an ebook.  I've decided to do a bit more than that, which I'll detail in full below (after the fold):
The World in the Satin Bag Project
Over the next month-ish, I am going to do the following:
  1. Edit and otherwise rewrite, rework, etc. The World in the Satin Bag.  The story will remain the same, for the most part, but it will be cleaner and more coherent.  But you know this already.
  2. Podcast the novel chapter-by-chapter on this blog (and elsewhere) so you can hear the progress.  It will likely be read by me, but if not, then you'll know about it.
  3. Finally, I will release the final version of the book in ebook format (and possibly as a print-on-demand book for those who don't have eReaders).  
How I will release the ebook is up to speculation at this point.  I have considered throwing it up on the major ebook sites and leaving it at that, but it has also occurred to me that I could easily distribute it via my blog.  But that's a month off and I'll figure it all out in time.

During all of this, I'm going to ask for donations.  $1, $10, or whatever you want.  I suspect I will offer free copies of the final product for those who donate at a certain $ level (and perhaps other cool things as well).  The goal will be $1,000, which is a lofty sum, but one I think I can reasonably make within the time frame (by the end of June).  There are close to 450 readers of this blog alone, and if each of you gave me a little over $2, that would get me to my goal.  Throw in Twitter followers and friends who (I hope) will spread the word, and perhaps I can meet that goal before I've even managed to finish the entire podcast.

The schedule for the podcast version will involve a new chapter every day, which I'll probably start putting out on the waves starting on the first of June, if not sooner.

But I'm not going to stop there.  If the project hits certain financial milestones, I will release original short fiction set in Traea, the world of the novel.  These stories will take place before the events of the novel, but will not be directly tied to them (in order to preserve the freshness of the events).  There will be a total of 4 additional stories if the milestones are reached (one new story every $250), and if I go well beyond my projected goals, I'll keep adding new stories.  These won't be flash fiction pieces either.  They'll be full-fledged pieces of fiction (short stories and novelettes).

And that's where I'm at right now.  Yes, I am aware that similar things have been done before.  Podcasting novels is nothing new.  Releasing such novels as POD books or ebooks is also nothing new.  But that's not the point.  The point is to renew an old franchise, bring a refreshed story to those who'll listen, and to help a guy out while he's wallowing in the mire, all while getting something fun to listen to (or read)!  As far as I can tell, there's nothing wrong with that.

If you have any questions, suggestions for additional things I might do, etc, please let me know!

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