First draft snippet from Marko Susimetsa & 3 new exclusive pledge tiers.
Firstly, sorry if you clicked on this email thinking it was the Elite: Dangerous update we're all waiting for. Read on though, this one is good.
I'd like to introduce three new pledge tiers today. Two of them are exclusive to a single backer and allow you to choose a name (subject to appropriateness) for a space station or a star system that will appear in at least one of the stories and possibly more than one. But there's more! Subject to the success of the Elite: Dangerous Kickstarter - we'll submit the chosen names for the Space Station and Frontier Star System rewards which we get as part of the writers pack*
*If Elite: Dangerous doesn't succeed but we do, then we can't offer that, so those particular rewards are a bonus, not a given. But have faith! Elite: Dangerous will happen!
There's also a £35 pledge to get access to the Authors Forum which will be set up by February 2013. That's where all the creative discussion will happen, the proofing, the editing, the storyline planning etc. You can post there, and you might even see some of your good ideas incorporated into the stories at the authors discretion. If you're interested in following the creative process in detail, this is the tier for you!
Now, onto some fine words. This is a very rough first draft (unedited) by Marko Susimetsa to give you a flavour of his story and writing style.
It was not the sensors of the small Cobra Mk I or the information on the displays that urged the young man to engage the retro thrusters of his ship and bring it to a relative halt beside a large, slowly rolling asteroid.
Purely by instinct, the young man knew that something was about to happen and he held his breath, wondering what he had sensed and, indeed, if it was his own nerves playing tricks on him. For a while the asteroids rolled past him in their eternal silence, their pocked surfaces untouched by human technology. Then his eyes fixated on a single asteroid, not far ahead. There was no sign about the big rock now, but the young man was certain that he had spotted a tell-tale sign of thruster exhaust fumes at the edge of that asteroid, hinting of another ship looming just behind it.
It was as if the asteroid’s side suddenly bloomed in a flash of energy and light and, simultaneously, a laser beam arched away from that explosion, passing disturbingly close to the Cobra and vanishing amongst the asteroids behind it. The young man’s fingers tightened around the controls and he fired the retro thrusters again, backing away from the suspicious asteroid. The palms of his hands sweating, the young man watched as a spaceship of unfamiliar, wing-like design appeared from behind the asteroid. He stared in surprise as the ship turned around and headed towards him slowly and, it seemed, non-threateningly. The Cobra’s scanner showed it as a yellow blip, agreeing with his assessment.
The young pilot was startled when the ship-to-ship communication system on the console blinked suddenly alive and he saw the image of an older man with a brown, roughly cut mane. The face was slightly scarred on the right side and the blue eyes seemed to smoulder with some untamed energy underneath bushy eyebrows. “Don’t worry,” the stranger’s words carried over the comm system. “It is safe now. There was only one of the dogs here.”