What is Hopjockey?
Sandy has a problem—aside from the cancer. No one on campus believes he saw the ghost building. And why would they? It's a stupid legend—no one really believes the Old Admin building vanished in the 70s—and what Sandy saw was right after he restarted chemo. Clearly he was hallucinating. That would explain it. What it doesn't explain is the postcard Sandy found in his dorm room the night the building appeared—or why the girl on the postcard appears to be the barista down at the Hub. You know, the girl he's in love with.
Turns out she's a hopjockey—a cross-world troublemaker—and she's been looking for him. Or rather, she's been looking for who she thinks he is. She's mistaken him for Garrett—Sandy's genius roommate, likely this generation's Einstein—and needs his help reading a map beyond all comprehension. Weighing his heart against the truth, and not wanting to miss what may be his only real chance for adventure, Sandy does what anyone might have done in that situation: he lies. And as a result, triggers a series of events that will destroy the campus (and the rest of the universe).
A science-fantasy adventure across space, time, myth, and reality, Hopjockey is a story of loneliness, impending doom, unrequited love, and impostor syndrome—basically, college. If you're curious, you can read the first two chapters below.
And who are you?
I’m writer, filmmaker, and game designer Matt Vancil. I wrote and directed the Gamers movies and created the web series JourneyQuest with Zombie Orpheus Entertainment and Dead Gentlemen Productions. I've written two other books and you can see much of my work online.
Where does Hopjockey fit in?
Hopjockey is the umbrella universe that connects the rest of my work. For over ten years, I’ve been setting up the story by leaving clues in the movies and shows (and elsewhere) as to how everything connects.
Narratively, Hopjockey is its own standalone piece of fiction. No wider knowledge of the movies is necessary to enjoy it or understand what’s going on. It’s the main story in a wider universe, and the first in its own series—pending this first one getting funded, of course.
Thanks for taking the time to check out the project. I hope you enjoy the read. If you'd like to see more, there are other chapters available over on my Patreon, where folks can follow along as the novel is written. Take care, and thanks for stopping by!
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$20,000 – Audio book
The novel will be recorded as an audio book read by the author (who is me) (you already knew that). All backers pledging $50 and above will receive the audio book in addition to their other rewards. I will also create two new pledge levels featuring the audio book: one at $15 (audio book only), and one at $35 (audio book + all previous rewards).
$25,000 – Cover art upgrade
$30,000 – Posters and wallpapers
All backers pledging $50 and above will receive an 11x17 inch poster of the new Lee Moyer cover art. Additionally, backers at all levels will receive digital access to wallpapers of the original and upgraded cover art, postcard, and any additional artwork unlocked as part of this campaign.
$35,000 – Audio book redux
I will also record an audio book version of my previous novel, PWNED. All backers receiving the Hopjockey audio book will also receive the audio book for PWNED.
$40,000 – TBD
I don't know, what are we doing? You tell me. If we're lucky enough to get this far, backers will help determine future stretch goals
Add Ons & Shipping
Add ons—such as additional copies and other works á la carte—will be available through BackerKit. Shipping will also be handled through BackerKit after the campaign. Estimated shipping costs are:
- $3.99 – US
- $6.99 – Canada
- $12.99 – Anywhere else in the universe
Risks and challenges
As with any creative project, unforeseen circumstances can arise. The main challenge with this project will be hitting the projected release date. I will keep backers of the project updated if and when the delivery timeline changes.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (25 days)