White Ash is an ongoing comic book series written by Charlie Stickney, with art by Conor Hughes and colors by Fin Cramb. Thanks to our amazing backers and fans, we’ve ridden the strength of two incredible Kickstarters to become an indie comic hit, that exhibited at San Diego Comic Con 2018. We’re also officially now the best reviewed Coal Mining Fantasy/Horror/ Forbidden Romance tale of all time. (Yes, we know we’re the only C.M.F.H.F.R. comic, but still, check out these reviews.)
If you’re returning to White Ash, thank you. We think Chapter Three is the best one yet. If you’re new to our town, welcome. We can’t wait to show you the place… and we hope you survive your stay.
This campaign is to raise funds to print the 32 page White Ash: Chapter Three and hopefully hit a couple of Stretch Goals along the way. We were lucky enough last time to be able reach several. Hopefully we can do that together again and give you even more bang for your White Ash buck.
Welcome to White Ash, a small smudge of a mining community in Western Pennsylvania, where the secrets are buried even deeper than the coal under the mountain. If you’re a fan of Supernatural, Twin Peaks or Lord of the Rings, you’re going to love getting to know our mysterious town.
In Chapter One, we met Aleck who's been counting down the hours till he can get the hell out of town and head off to college.
But an apparent accident at the mine stalls his exit, setting him down a life-altering path.
One that brought him into the orbit of the enigmatic Lillian Alden.
There's a natural chemistry between the two... some would even call it HOT. But not as hot as Thane Alden's burning rage would be if he found out Aleck was spending time with his daughter.
Aaaand from here on out, we're going to get into a bit of spoiler territory.
However, If you want to see one, last, spoiler-free breakdown of what White Ash is all about you can watch this short "get to know our town" video made by the White Ash Chamber of Commerce. True, it's a bit dated, but it should give you a good sense of what life is like in our idyllic little mining community.
***HERE COME THE SPOILERS***
Shortly after the accident, Aleck discovered that nothing about White Ash or his life is what it seemed; and that there’s a reason he’s short, stubborn, and can grow a beard in a day — he comes from a family of...
Yep Dwarves. And if that wasn’t enough of a kick in the head, Lillian, the young woman he’s just fallen for, isn’t just the daughter of the owner of the White Ash Mining Company, she’s also an elf.
So there you have it. White Ash is just a simple tale, old as time, of forbidden elf/ dwarf romance, set against the backdrop of the oncoming war with The Brood... which we kinda neglected to mention earlier. The Brood is a race of dragon/human hybrids whose origins harken back to how the Elves and the Dwarves got here (White Ash) in the first place.
Yep, all Aleck and Lillian need to do is overcome a blood feud that started when the Earth was still young, an army of dragon/human hybrids, and some overly-opinionated relatives, and they can live happily ever after.
Of course, as those of you who have been with us for the first two chapters know, there isn't much happily ever after in White Ash. Which is why, for this campaign, we're regretfully asking you to join us for White Ash: Chapter Three -- The Funeral.
And yes, like the life-cycle of one of White Ash's finest citizens, the book is done. Once the campaign completes, it'll be off to the printer. But if you can't wait that long, and you don't tell anyone, we'll show you a couple more peeks at the inside of Chapter Three.
What? You still need more convincing before you pledge? You do? Well, okay, you can download a 25 page ashcan (a FREE comic book) of Chapter One HERE.
Money raised will go toward artist fees, printing, backer rewards and shipping of the third issue. And if we're lucky enough to surpass our goal, any additional funding will go towards creating new rewards or be put directly back into the book in the form of additional pages, and production of future issues. (Or paying for those extra shipping costs that always seem to hit) No one is looking to get rich here. (Otherwise we wouldn't be doing comics. Really, we wouldn't) We just want to ensure that we can produce an amazing high-quality comic book series that our backers will enjoy for years to come.
These books are HUGE. There's too much story in White Ash to contain it in 22 page issues. Chapter One was a 52 page beast. Chapter Two and three are both 32 pages long. And that kind of content deserves a premium paper weight.
We print White Ash on a heavy 85 lb glossy paper stock with a 105 lb glossy cover. When you pick up one of our books, you'll feel the White Ash difference.
This campaign we are lucky enough to be able to offer two Variant Covers.
In honor of White Ash's first trip to SDCC, Conor and Fin whipped up an exclusive Con-only variant cover that was only at San Diego. But if you couldn't make it to SDCC, we didn't want to leave you, our loyal backers out in the cold. So we "bought up" some of the copies at the con and are offering them directly to you. This is an incredibly limited print run. We only made 75 total copies of the SDCC variant.
Our second Variant comes from budding Italian superstar, guest artist, Romina Moranelli. Romina is launching a new series, Artifact One for Aspen next month. We asked her if she had time to do our Glarien-centric cover and she said she would... but it wouldn't be until mid-July. But when you have a chance to work with an artist who draws women like these...
...you jump at it.
Romina has provided us with a work in progress sketch of the cover. We can't wait to see her final version of Glarien.
We will only print 300 copies of the Moranelli variant and they will not be sold in stores.
We know what it's like to open up a package and find a mangled Kickstarter comic inside. We pack our books with care that we used in making the book and the love that we have for our backers.
Each comic is bagged, boarded front and back and sent in stay-flat packaging. Made in White Ash means everything from the content, to the mailer we use, meets our standards of quality.
This time around we have a dragon's horde of treasure, starting with...
Stretch Goal #1 ($11,500) Thank You, Again!
As a sign of our appreciation we’re going send every backer who’s getting a physical reward, a 6x9 print of this thank you illustration drawn by White Ash's own Conor Hughes.
Stretch Goal #2 ($12,500) Trade Me Please
Time for another White Ash trading card. Last campaign, we stretched to add six shiny cards featuring Alec, Lillian, Thane, Seth, Orman, and Katlyn. If we reach $12,500, every print backer will get a card featuring Glarien included with their order. And every backer at one of our Print Catch Up tiers will receive the full set of cards. (It's only fair, if you're catching up on printed things, you should be caught up).
Stretch Goal #3 ($13,500) Traded Again
And because one card seems a little paltry, Conor’s going to draw two more cards, Gunther and Kyle. So that’s 3 cards total for those of you backing at the lower levels and 9 cards (3 new + 6 from the last campaign) for those at the Print Catch Up and higher tiers.
Stretch Goal #4 ( $15, 000) Digital Diamonds and Pearls.
it’s time for another Deluxe PDF. For those of you new to White Ash, with our deluxe books, we really try to go above and beyond in opening up the hood and providing the thought process behind how we make the comics. Also this time around in addition to providing the full script, Charlie will break down some of the process he uses to create the motion videos at the beginning of Kickstarter video. This Deluxe PDF will be sent to every backer getting a PDF of Chapter Two.
Stretch Goal #5 ($17,000) Take That Banner Home
Conor drew a gorgeous tree for our SDCC booth. And as it would be incredibly selfish of us to keep it all to ourselves, every backer receiving physical rewards will also receive a 6 x 9 print of the White Ash Tree featured on the banner.
Stretch Goal #6 ($19,000) Put On The Spot
Every backer getting our Funeral Cover will now receive a limited edition version, Kickstarter exclusive, Spot Varnish Cover.
Stretch Goal #7 ($22,000) EVERYONE HATES TO WAIT
Normally our post-campaign printing process involves sending our books overseas and then having them shipped on a boat back to America. This takes a while. That’s why we promised delivery in November. However, since we hit $22,000, we will expedite via airmail a portion of the comics so our backers will get their books much earlier (October… possibly even mid-September if all goes well on the printing). We will update you with a revised schedule as soon as we have it.
Risks and challenges
So we’ve now been through two successful Kickstarters. The first one, we were a couple months delayed when it came to delivery. We learned from that and changed things up. The biggest change we decided to make, was that in the future, we’d have the book done before we launched the Kickstarter. It made a huge difference. For Chapter Two, over half our books made it out for our promised June delivery window. And the rest are going out now in July.
Going forward, we’re asking for an even more conservative window from our printer (the last source of delays we can’t control). We’d rather promise a lengthy turnaround to you and then deliver the books a couple of weeks early, than be late again. We’re striving to run things as efficiently as possible. But with only a three person team, things can happen. Thankfully, with Chapter Three finished, it’s really all about the printing and shipping process. As soon as the KS funds, we’ll send out the PDF’s and the books off to the printer. We’ve minimized the amount that can go wrong, hopefully this time around it’ll be even smoother sailing. (** ducks and hide from vengeful shipping gods**)Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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