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Read-to-Me Comics: Rowen and the Rascal Lion's video poster
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Greysoul Studio's Read-to-Me Comics combine the energy and visual excitement of comics with the innocent fun of kids' stories. Read more

Hackettstown, NJ Comics
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on February 22, 2013.

Greysoul Studio's Read-to-Me Comics combine the energy and visual excitement of comics with the innocent fun of kids' stories.

Hackettstown, NJ Comics
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About this project

IMPORTANT UPDATE VIDEO: WE ARE NOW OFFERING TWO BOOKS!

Greysoul Studio (currently Jason Forest and Bruce Seaton) is an artists' partnership dedicated to pushing children's and young adult literature in new and exciting directions. Our current project is a series of books collectively called The Three Knuckleheads Read-to-Me Comics

These books use the visual style and adventurous feel of comic books to reshape and support the classical ideas, themes, and innocent fun found in children's books. 

Our Mission: To adapt the magical sense of fun and adventure that we discovered in the children's books of our youth and to remold that magic to a form more accessible to today's kids. The children of the new millenium are different in many ways from those of the 60s, 70s, and 80s, but many children's books today stick very close to the paradigms developed by the authors of previous generations. We aim to break the existing mold (gently), and reshape it (tenderly).

The idea is to create books that are fun for kids... and for their parents. For those of you who associate comics only with violence and scantily- clad women, we're sorry to disappoint you - this is a comic you won't have to hide from your parents... or your kids.

We're proud to present the first of the Three Knuckleheads books, Rowen and the Rascal Lion. R&RL aims to bridge the gap between books for 3-4 year-olds and books for kids who are starting to read for themselves at a more sophisticated level. Regardless of whether the book is being read to a child or being read by a child, it is intended to be read aloud (with deep, growly lion voices whenever possible).

Rowen and the Rascal Lion is the story of a little boy who encounters a rough-housing lion and has to battle the beast to protect his favorite garden. This book makes use of the themes of imagination and teamwork, and incorporates simple rhyme and poetic structures often found in classic kid's books. 

The images below are all actual page spreads from Rowen and the Rascal Lion.

The book is huge. We were nervous when we first considered printing our book as a twelve-inch square, but it's hard to describe how good these look at full size. 

For example, the picture below is two feet wide when printed! Think how awesome it is to open up a fold-out vinyl record and see the artwork inside. That's exactly how big every spread of Rowen and the Rascal Lion is. (Are we dating ourselves yet?)

***Additional copies of R&RL can be added to any incentive package above the $20 level by adding $15 to your pledge!

The goal of this kickstarter campaign is to generate enough interest and backing to get this book printed and to be able to continue making these books. The second Three Knuckleheads book - Bathtub Western - is now available via this campaign! We try to stay focused on production - always looking forward to the next project, and in order to get to that next project, we need to fund these ones.

Because of your generosity and belief in our project, we're able to bring you Bathtub Western as well - for fifteen additional dollars! We're basically selling these books at cost. We can do this because unlike many comic book or children's authors on Kickstarter - those who have a great idea and are putting together the funding necessary to pursue it - we've already completed the writing and art for these books (slowly, over a period of years) and now we're just looking to get them out the door.

SOME REWARD-RELATED ART SAMPLES:

Below is the art for the two sides of the 20"x20" poster included in all packages $50 and up!

SIDE 1:

SIDE 2:

Below are two samples of drawings by Jason to be included in the $150 package and accompanied by haiku by Bruce. Each drawing will be original.

More art revealed!

The Slipcase:

The Bookmark/Certificate of Membership:

The Minicomic (should we reach our $14,000 stretch goal):

Risks and challenges

Greysoul has already completed production of Rowen and the Rascal Lion, and we've received test copies of the books to make sure they look as beautiful as they do. Working with an overseas printer (which we are) can be a challenge, but we've been in correspondence with our printer (which has an office in California) for nearly six months, and they've come through at every turn. They've worked with several other very successful Kickstarter projects, and their products are of very high quality. As with any overseas-printed project, there is a risk of delayed order fulfillment, but we do not foresee that being an issue with this project. Remember - you're backing a finished product, not a concept!

One other thing - make sure you put your address in correctly when ordering your book! If you tell us you live on Mars, we'll sure try to get it there, but you probably won't be seeing your book anytime soon.

Finally, for those unfamiliar with Kickstarter, there is always a danger that our project won't make its goal. Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing platform, so if we fail to meet our $12,000 goal, our backers won't be charged, and won't receive their incentives.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

  • The prints we are offering are printed using an extremely rich, accurate, and repeatable printing process known as giclée. These prints will be produced on the highest quality beautiful Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308 gsm. Smooth 100% Cotton paper. These prints are archival in quality, and will be as accurate in color and clarity as the original work itself.

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  • You can add $15 to any pledge above the $35 level for each additional book you would like. To do this simply click "manage your pledge" at the top of the incentives column on the right. In the next window, add $15 for each extra book you would like. Then click "continue on to next step." Then, follow the prompts. At this point, you're dealing with Amazon, which should be pretty straightforward.

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  • We have some really awesome other items (such as dust jackets, books, puzzles, etc.) that we would like to make available to our backers! Should we hit our initial funding goal of $12,000, we will add our first stretch goal. Nominally, the purpose of stretch goals is to keep backers engaged and excited about the project. For us, it's more about wanting to share even more of our library with you!

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  • Jay's Answer: The answer is as simple as homemade mac n' cheese (ingredients: mac and... cheese). Survivors of the infinitely creative kingdom of childhood, we, like most of you, have been endowed with a silly subconscious that, unfortunately usually lies dormant in most adults. However, due to the depths at which we have, without hesitation, hung our maturity on cardboard coat hangers and backpedaled through our current age, through adolescence, to firmly plant our feet on the squishy soil of childhood, just to better understand the genre of books we desire to create, we have also run into unintended side effects from such adventuring. Of those side effects we suddenly find ourselves remarkably equipped in the art of crayon drawing, train track building, Lego construction, and GI Joe parachute assembling. We have also become attuned to every mud puddle and snow pile in a two mile radius. Our psyches begin to warp, and awkward dress up clothes and old Halloween costumes take hold... any 30 year old standing around in a combo Batman, barbarian, fireman outfit twenty sizes too small will also find himself desperately seeking obscurity, a place to enjoy the relived pandemonium of his childhood a little longer. It is in this search, this frantic search, that we, as many others no doubt would, realized that we had an uncanny ability to assemble and construct what can be none other than the perfect blanket fort. Why should we, fortunate enough to find our way through the prison of adulthood back to our less inhibited roots, keep that from all of you, I ask? We should not.

    Bruce's Answer: We had the will and the skills, okay?

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  • YES!!! The slipcases included at the $100 level will now be designed to hold both books!!! WAAHOOO!!! Jason is designing exciting new art that will adorn the surface of these awesome slipcases. Stay tuned to future updates to see a sneak peek!

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  • At the top right of the page, click "manage my pledge" and kickstarter will walk you through the rest. Super easy!

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $1 or more

    2 backers

    The Lion's ROAR: A thank-you from us to everyone who chips in a dollar or more, that will go in the back of the first hardcover edition of Rowen and the Rascal Lion!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $3 or more

    30 backers

    The Romper: Too busy to snuggle up with the BIG book? Three bucks nets you a digital copy of Rowen and the Rascal Lion (and any other books opened up by stretch goals). We'll make sure to get you a format that will work on whatever computing device you're slingin'.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    2 backers

    The Social Brigade: At ten dollars or more, you get access to an exclusive FB group - The Knuckleheads Brigade - in which members can share stories, ideas, and experiences together! We can't wait to build a community and chat with you all!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $20 or more

    80 backers

    The Rascal: It's the book! You get everything at the $10 reward level, plus Rowen & the Rascal Lion, in beautiful 12"x12" hardcover.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    17 backers

    The Kitchen Patrol: For five extra dollars, you get everything at the $20 reward tier, plus a set of three Greysoul Studio refrigerator magnets! Let us help you keep your grocery list safe!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $35 or more

    27 backers

    Two of a Kind: The $25 reward, plus an additional copy of Rowen and the Rascal Lion to share! Save five bucks! Give one as a fabulous birthday gift, or donate one to your local library!

    Please note that higher incentive tiers do not include a second copy of Rowen and the Rascal Lion, though additional copies can be added to any incentive level above this for $15.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $35 or more

    54 backers

    Two of a Different Kind: This reward is identical to the Two of a Kind $35 reward, but rather than including two copies of R&RL, this incentive includes one copy of R&RL and one copy of Bathtub Western.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $40 or more

    7 backers

    The Membership: For forty dollars, you get the whole $25 reward, PLUS something really cool to personalize the book for your kid - a heavy-weight bookmark/ticket declaring its bearer a member of the Knucklehead Club (a worldwide brother- and sisterhood), which will come inscribed with the name of your choice, hand-written by us!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    10 backers

    The Comforter Craftsman: For fifty dollars, you get both digital and physical copies of the book, the magnets and the bookmark, PLUS a 20"x20" fold-out poster: The Beginner's Guide to Blanket Forts, which details the basic technical and aesthetic aspects of proper Blanket Fort construction.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $55 or more

    4 backers

    The Bathtub Membership: This reward includes all of the $40 rewards, plus a copy of Bathtub Western.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $65 or more

    5 backers

    The Bathtub Craftsman: This level includes all of the rewards from the $50 level, plus a copy of Bathtub Western.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    9 backers Limited (1 left of 10)

    The Connoisseur: Your copy of Rowen and the Rascal Lion will be lovingly embraced by a limited-edition slipcase and will include a signed, archival-quality giclee bookplate, suitable for framing. This incentive level includes all $50 incentive level rewards.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    10 backers All gone!

    The Original: You get everything included in the $50 reward level, plus an ORIGINAL 6"x10" pencil drawing by Jason Forest (dealer's choice), each accompanied by a unique haiku by Bruce Seaton and inspired by Jason's art, signed by both of us, and packed into a comic book mylar bag and slipped inside the front cover of your book!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    2 backers Limited (3 left of 5)

    The Original, Part II: You get everything included in the $50 reward level, plus an ORIGINAL 6"x10" pencil drawing by Jason Forest (dealer's choice), each accompanied by a unique haiku by Bruce Seaton and inspired by Jason's art, signed by both of us, and packed into a comic book mylar bag and slipped inside the front cover of your book!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $225 or more

    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    The Original Connoisseur: Everything included at the $150 level, but also including the slipcase and signed bookplate included at the $100 level!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    The Curator: Everything from the $150 reward level, plus an 18"x30" archival-quality giclee print of your choice (see the curator options gallery at the bottom of the page), with certificate of authenticity signed by Jason Forest and Bruce Seaton.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $300 or more

    5 backers All gone!

    You get everything from the $250 reward level, PLUS the limited edition version of Rowen and the Rascal Lion included at the $100 level!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $325 or more

    2 backers Limited (3 left of 5)

    Did you miss the chance to pick up a top-tier reward? Well, here's another chance - Three twenty-five nets you everything from the Curator reward, plus the slipcase-ensconced special Read-to-Me Comic edition and signed giclée bookplate! Don't miss your chance this time!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    The Greysoul: Everything from the $300 level, plus a numbered and FRAMED archival-quality giclee print created exclusively for this kickstarter, with certificate of authenticity and signed by Jason Forest and Bruce Seaton.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world

Funding period

- (30 days)