The Story of How Our Story Came To Be
In January of 2013, I released a book called Gatemaker. I found myself consumed with the need to finish the story that begins in that book. In January of 2014, the second book, Mindshaper, came out thanks to the generous support of Kickstarter backers, and then in January 2015, the third book, Metalbreaker, joined it--again thanks to Kickstarter backers. I want to continue on the quest to finish this series, and this new book, Fatewaker, marks the half-way point!
I'm an English teacher and a big old nerd, but more than anything else I love working with teenagers. My career gives me many opportunities to do this, but it also reminds me time and time again of how hard it is to be that age, and how hard it is to find your way in the world and to find yourself. The novels in the Spiralchain are action-adventure, science-fiction and fantasy tales, of course... but they are also places where we can find pieces of ourselves.
Growing up, I never read anything in the genres that I loved that really spoke to who I was. I didn't see myself in my books, and I hoped that one day I would change that. These days, that problem seems so much more real, so much bigger, than ever before--too many of our children, of our family members and our friends, don't get to see themselves as the heroes of the story, or as the model of what is good and right. Too many people grow up thinking they are wrong and that they make no difference in the world.
These books are one small way of me saying to every single reader that they are not wrong or broken and that they do, most assuredly, make a difference.
They aren't preachy. They aren't full of lectures and diatribes. The series is just a good story about good people in awful situations, and I need your help to tell the next piece of that story.
What Exactly Are We Kickstarting?
Getting my book into the hands of those who care to read it is costly. When Gatemaker came out, it took every penny I had in savings to cover the cost of printing. People then bought them from me, and the balance was set right, but it was nerve-wracking and a little scary to stretch myself so thin. For Mindshaper and Metalbreaker, I turned to Kickstarter, and that helped protect me from the risky, shaky, stretched-too-thin phenomena of the past. I want to keep writing, but I also live a real life in a real world where, just like anyone else, I can't absorb any more financial burden than absolutely necessary. So that's where you come in, I hope.
The purpose of this Kickstarter is to finance the initial printing of Fatewaker in both hardcover and paperback. With this money, I can get the books into the hands of the people most interested in seeing what happens next in the ongoing story of the Spiralchain.
About the Book: Fatewaker
::Cover Art Forthcoming::
If the future has already been written, is there any room left for choice? Jara Abison is fourteen summers old. She is the last of her kind--a Wyr, a member of an ancient order from the world of Onus gifted with the power to see into the future and charged with carrying out the grand, cosmic Purpose that drives the universe forward. She has carried this burden for two years now. Her visions have filled her with secrets and forced her to lie to her friends and family, and she has had enough. As an incredible war that now consumes two worlds grows ever more savage, Jara discovers that her visions lead to an end she cannot abide. With her friends at her side, she will seek out the truth of the Purpose on a new world and find--with any luck--a way to end the dangers that have haunted her dreams. If Jara can not find the courage and wisdom to defy the Purpose, the Spiral of Worlds will be undone. But if she can... what happens then? What is the cost of fate denied?
Fatewaker is currently on track to run ~550 pages (depending on format).
Fatewaker is Book 4 in the Spiralchain. See below for a shory blurb about each of the first three books.
What Can You Tell Me About the Rewards?
Most of the rewards are for the book (in several different formats). Here are some notes about the things that are not books...
The acknowledgement to all Backers by name will appear in two places:
- On the web at http://spiralchain.net/supporters/ (The page already exists--it currently contains Mindshaper's and Metalbreaker's Kickstarter backers.)
- At the back of all versions of Fatewaker, just before the "About the Author" section, forever.
This Kickstarter is your last chance (aside from potential future Kickstarters) to get any of these books in the Nook or iBooks digital format. During the rest of the year, all Spiralchain novels are Kindle-exclusive for digital formats. So if you are a Nook or other ePub reader user, now is your chance!
There are four "Binge Rewards" for this Kickstarter. These represent ways to catch-up on the series all in one swoop. A Binge reward gets you all four books in the series in whatever format you are purchasing. If you want to know more about the earlier books, you can see details about them below!
The custom slipcase for the deluxe hardcover (also available as a separate purchase from the add-on menu, below) is hand-made by a talented craftsman. These cases are unlabeled--just smooth, sturdy, perfectly fitting sleeves that the hardcover book slides into for protection and added attractiveness. The slipcase for Fatewaker will be a dark violet color, echoing the color of the paperback cover. If you choose to buy slipcases for the first three books (from the add-on menu below, or from the Deluxe Binge reward level), they will be a dark red for Gatemaker, white for Metalbreaker, and dark green for Metalbreaker, again echoing the color scheme of the paperback covers.
The slipcovers are being designed and executed by the talented craftsman at Slipcase Books!
The Custom Gauntlet
See Update #4 for details on this gauntlet, including preliminary sketches. As additional sketches and photos of the work-in-progress gauntlet come in, they will be updated here!
This project is being designed and executed by the fine artists and designers at Retromancer's Emporium!
If you want to add additional copies of Fatewaker or any other book in the series to your rewards, you can do so by adding the following amounts to your pledge (see FAQs, below):
* e-Book: $5
* Paperback: $25
* Hardcover: $35
* Deluxe Slipcase $60 (This add-on is for a slipcase only, not a book... but you CAN purchase slipcases for prior Spiralchain novels this way!)
(NOTE: For paperbacks, hardcovers, and deluxe slipcases, please add $20 per item if shipping Internationally)
About the Series
Spiralchain is an eight-book series about eight parallel worlds under threat from a cosmic force of decay called the Rot. Some time ago, in accordance with the master plan of the universe, called the Purpose, a group of children were identified on the world of Core (Earth)--the Children of the Line. These young people possess incredible mystic abilities, and only by working together can the Children of the Line stop teh estruction of the Spiral of Worlds.
The first book, Gatemaker, tells the story of the first discovery of the Children of the Line and focuses upon Adam Childers, the Gatemaker, a young man struggling with his sexual orientation and with the burden of his destiny. This book begins the quest of our heroes as they are drawn into conflict on the mystic world of Onus and the gender-divided world of Murrod, both worlds that feature prominently throughout the series.
The second book, Mindshaper, deals largely with the ramifications of travel between worlds--the creation of a group of malefic creatures called Obliviates. The story focuses upon Tatyana Harper, the Mindshaper, a young woman struggling to decide what kind of person she is going to be after a hellish childhood. The book features the technological world of Rettik and the struggles of all of the young adult protagonists to choose the way they wish to approach adulthood.
The third book, Metalbreaker, recounts the rise to power of two very different, but equally mighty foes whose machinations threaten the Spiral as much or more than even the dark Obliviates. As these dread forces launch into their plans, it is JC Stein, a companion of the Children of the Line with no magical powers himself other than hyperactivity and a burning desire to prove himself, that features in the central role. JC propels the group to the ice-bound world of Arctos in search of the identity of the last three members of the Children of the Line, and along the way he must discover both the value of courage and the value of fear as they unearth the first hints at the role the embattled Metalbreakers have played in the history of the Spiral.
If the total money raised by this Kickstarter passes our $1000 funding goal, additional goodies will be unlocked. The complete plan for Stretch Goals is listed below! As we get closer to goals, additional details about them will be announced.
30 Backers Goal UNLOCKED: All backers who pledged for a physical book will receive a one-inch button featuring the world orb graphic for Depal, the featured world in Fatewaker.
40 Backers Goal: All backers who pledged for a physical book will receive a one-inch button featuring the Fatewaker symbol (from the paperback cover of Fatewaker, not yet revealed!).
$1,000 Goal ACHIEVED!: As a thank-you, a special bookmark will be added to all reward tiers that include a physical book.
$1,150 Stretch Goal UNLOCKED!: A new ~12-page short story set between Metallbreaker and Fatewaker will be released in January, 2016 on spiralchain.net. Backers will be sent a survey and the results of this survey will determine which character will feature at the center of the story (as well as choosing other elements of the setting, supporting cast, and conflict).
$1,300 Stretch Goal UNLOCKED!: Series artist Andrew J. Aguirre will produce a map of the pivotal world of Onus to include in the ebook, paperback, and hardcover editions of Fatewaker.
$1,500 Stretch Goal: ANOTHER brand new short story (at least 8 pages in length) will be released in March 2016--a story set immediately after Fatewaker that sheds additional light on a series of events that are revealed in the climax of the novel. This new story will be sent EXCLUSIVELY to Kickstarter backers (all levels) and will not be published online--it will remain exclusively in the hands of Fatewaker backers until such time as the Spiralchain short story anthology is published (Fall 2016). This story will be a game changer... but to say much more now would be spoiling the end of Fatewaker!
NEW $1,596 Stretch Goal: For helping us topple the previous Spiralchain funding record, this goal will provide all backers at all levels with a free PDF copy of the Spiralchain Short Story Anthology (releasing Q3 2016)!
$2,000 Stretch Goal: If we reach this funding level, a series of maps for the worlds of Murrod, Rettik, Arctos, and Depal will be commissioned from our amazing artist, Andrew J. Aguirre, and released exclusively to Kickstarter backers as a PDF download (for later publication in the Spiralchain short story anthology, Fall 2016). This is something we have always wanted to do, but funding at this level will make it possible to pay Andrew properly for the level of effort and detail this task will require!
For More Information
Risks and challenges
Fatewaker will print using the same services and file formats as the previous three books, which proceeded without any significant hiccups, so I feel confident that there should be no production mishaps that will notably impact delivery.
The novel is 70% written and is undergoing final drafts and edits concurrently, so it should be ready for printing on time!
The cover art is in development, but Andrew Aguirre is a proven professional and has delivered terrific cover art time and time again for my projects.
The largest problem I can imagine at this time is managing the redistribution (sending out books once they arrive from the printer), but there were no hiccups in distribution last year, and I am confident we will do equally well or better this year.
Additionally, unlocking additional stretch goals does impact the timeline on things, so I have to be careful to not over-promise on these opportunities.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)