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£1,044
pledged of £2,000pledged of £2,000 goal
33
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Tue, October 3 2017 2:53 PM UTC +00:00

About

Solstice Shorts Festival is a time themed live literature and music event held on the shortest day of the year, 21st December (Winter Solstice and Short Story Day)

Originating in Greenwich, London on the Prime Meridian, now, in its 4th year (despite what it says in the basics for this project) we are going nationwide.

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The theme this year is Dusk, that time between day and night when everything changes. It lasts roughly 45 minutes and the idea is to have multiple sites across the UK all reading/singing different material (Chosen by us, read by actors/ sung by musicians) in several locations, starting as far North East as we can get and ending as far South West as possible, taking in key spots in between. On 21st December Dusk starts in the UK in the far NE (Shetland) at 16:53 and finishes in the far South West at 18:21, taking between 40 and 50 minutes depending where you are. We want the performances to match this exactly, and to have a live link up (Facebook, Youtube...) - so that Penzance wouldn't start reading until Shetland had almost finished (supposing we can get someone in Shetland interested) and all the other performances will overlap, so that somewhere in the ether we are all reading/singing together, like a mumuration of starlings.

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The Stories and Poems will all be new and unpublished, and the Music either traditional or original. That 40-50 minutes suggests there will be only 2 of each at each location, so the more locations we sign up the more material we can use.

As you can imagine this is quite a tricky idea to pull off, and could be expensive. We are applying to the Arts Council for most of the money but even if successful we will need match funding, hence this! We are also looking for match funding locally to each venue as we confirm them. Of Course if YOU love the idea so much that you fund the whole shebang here that solves a lot of problems! Feel very free to share with your friends.

We need to pay 2 actors plus 2-3 musicians for each venue, pay for the venue for about 2 hours to allow for set up and clear down, pay the organisers, pay for marketing and insurance. So the more venues the more expensive, Often people let us use venues for free and sometimes people give some of their time for free (I've never been paid for all the time I put in for example) but it could cost as much as £2k per location, so this will cover 10% of the costs, which is the minimum match funding the Arts Council will consider.

Multiple calls out are at last bearing fruit and we have definite (subject to funding) organisers and venues in Aberdeen, (Scotland), Inverness (Scotland) Lancaster (NW England) Angelsey (NW Wales), Rossendale (NW England) Birmingham (Midlands), Nottingham (Midlands), Greenwich (London), Barnstaple (SW England) Redruth, (SW England)

We also have potential organisers and venues in Carlisle (NW England), Hartlepool (North East England), Penzance (South West England) and Stoke (Central Midlands).

We have over 40 expressions of interest from writers so far, and we'll be doing another call out now we know where the events will be, many of whom are published and indeed critically aclaimed, and equally some who are relative novices, so its an exciting prospect.

See those rewards over there on the right?

That's what you can have to play with as a thank you for your support. In case you need some visuals to help you decide, here they are.

Orginal painting from Kevin Threlfall
Orginal painting from Kevin Threlfall

 

A weekend in Scotland hosted by our Inverness organisers
A weekend in Scotland hosted by our Inverness organisers

 

 

Purple Prose pouch (colours much brighter than shown here!)
Purple Prose pouch (colours much brighter than shown here!)

 

hand written poem to go with the pouch
hand written poem to go with the pouch

 

5th anniversary mug
5th anniversary mug

 

Dusk T shirt
Dusk T shirt

 

5th anniversary t shirt
5th anniversary t shirt

 

badges
badges

 

5th anniversary badges
5th anniversary badges

 

prints from Kevin Threlfall
prints from Kevin Threlfall

 

Matchbook stories
Matchbook stories

 

 

all our books...
all our books...

 

Arachne Friend
Arachne Friend

 

Risks and challenges

We have run the festival for 3 previous years and whilst this is our most ambitious take on it, we have also organised a 36 date tour to 20 venues around the country in the last year (part funded by a crowd fund here) so some of the pitfalls of arranging at a distance we have already overcome, and we can advise the less experienced organisers of things to watch out for.
We have no idea how the link up will work but I'm going on a course! - I have been stressing to people that their venue MUST have a good phone signal or wifi and we tested the uploading part at our 5th anniversary event on 8th September. I definitely need a better phone picture wise but the sound isn't bad at all.
If we don't get the Arts Council funding (and its possible we won't) we will draw in our idea and either just have as many venues as we have found alternate funding locally, or worst case scenario, stick with our usual Greenwich base, but have a longer event that covers the 2 hours it takes for Dusk to clear the UK.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.29

    Our undying appreciation

    Our undying appreciation
    A warm glow of satisfaction that you helped us, a thank you email from us!

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    Pledge £5 or more About $6

    Arachne Badge

    Arachne badge: we produce a limited run of badges for each of our books. they are 25mm across. We have at least 10 of each design left. They are hand cut so designs vary slightly. Take a look in the gallery and we'll do our best to send you what you ask for.

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    Pledge £5 or more About $6

    One of our Arachne5 books

    One of the first 5 books we published

    Includes:
    • Weird Lies
    • Lovers' Lies
    • London Lies
    • Mosaic of Air
    • Stations
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    The Don't Touch Garden Audio book

    Our first audio book, hot off the mixing desk, not available in shops until January. Available as a downloadable MP3.

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    Pledge £10 or more About $13

    Arachne 5th anniversary mug

    white mug featuring our 5th anniversary logo

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    Pledge £10 or more About $13

    Allotment Tea with a writer

    One of our Bath based writers is offering a trip round her allotment followed by tea/coffee and vegan brownies.

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    Pledge £10 or more About $13

    An Arachne Book

    It's what we do!
    have a book, why not?

    Includes:
    • Brat
    • Liberty Tales
    • Shortest Day Longest Night
    • Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed
    • With Paper for Feet
    • The Don't Touch Garden
    • Foraging
    • The Other Side of Sleep
    • Solstice Shorts: 16 stories about time
    • Devilskein & Dearlove
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    Pledge £10 or more About $13

    Signed copy of The Old Woman from Friuli

    copy of our children's illustrated folk tale signed by hte author, Ghillian Potts

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    Pledge £10 or more About $13

    The BOOK of DUSK

    It may not have that title, but you get the idea. We don't actually want to get mistaken for Phillip Pullman. A copy of the anthology that will be published including all the chosen stories and poems, and the lyrics of any original songs that get chosen. Paperback, B format, notch bound, 80 gsm wood free paper. Cover will utilise our DUSK logo. No idea just yet how many pages - probably around 160. This will be put together at the speed of light as soon as we've chosen the material and we aim to have it ready for the events, but WON'T be available in the shops until June - so you will be getting a very pre-publication copy, so hot off the press it sizzles.

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    Pledge £12 or more About $15

    Ticket to Ride CD

    CD from Vocal Chords Choir, our regular collaborators on Solstice Shorts

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    Pledge £15 or more About $19

    Signed copy 'In The Wild Wood'

    Arachne Author Frances Gapper is offering a signed copy of her new collection of short stories (Published by Cultured Llama) more info http://www.culturedllama.co.uk/books/in-the-wild-wood

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    Pledge £15 or more About $19

    Signed copy of Devilskein & Dearlove

    Devilskein & Dearlove, with bookplate SIGNED by Alex Smith.
    Sorry, We can't ship to South Africa as D&D is published by someone else there.

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    SIGNED books

    A copy of Liberty Tales or Shortest Day, Longest Night, (you choose!) signed by as many of the authors as we've managed to catch up with or a copy of Brat our new YA novel by Ghillian Potts, signed by the author

    Includes:
    • Shortest Day Longest Night
    • Liberty Tales
    • Brat
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    Pledge £15 or more About $19

    Arachne5 T shirt

    plain simple white T shirt with our '5' design celebrating our 5th anniversary. see the gallery/story for design. Delivery about 2 weeks after the end of the crowd fund.

    Includes:
    • size xxxl
    • size L
    • Size M
    • Size XL
    • size S
    • Size XXL
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    Pledge £15 or more About $19

    Poet-crocheted 'purple prose pouch'

    Otherwise known as a book bag, in which to keep your volume pristine as it travels... It's in purple wool with green trimmings, and big enough for a large paperback, a few slim volumes or a kindle: completely unique, and useful too! Made by hand by a poet in Swindon. Hard to resist!

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    Pledge £16 or more About $21

    copy 'Matchbook Stories 4'

    Arachne Author Frances Gapper is offering a copy of TINY collection of short stories (Published by Ex Machina) which includes one by her. more info http://www.bookexmachina.com/matchbookstories-04.html

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    Pledge £16 or more About $21

    DUSK t shirt

    Black T shirt with our DUSK design. see Gallery for design. Sizes tend to come up a bit small (smaller than the white ones anyway) consider ordering a size larger than you would usually

    Includes:
    • size S
    • Size M
    • size L
    • Size XL
    • Size XXL
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    Pledge £17 or more About $22

    An Epic Fantasy Novel

    Signed Copy of Cherry Potts' mammoth fantasy epic, 'The Dowry Blade'. UK only, it's a big book! more information: https://arachnepress.com/books/the-dowry-blade/

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    Pledge £20 or more About $26

    Haiku critique

    One for the writers:
    Arachne author Lee Nash is offering to critique up to 5 Haiku more info http://leenashpoetry.com/mentoring/

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    Pledge £20 or more About $26

    LIMITED EDITION Handmade book

    The fabulous Jeremy Dixon is making us a handmade 20 page (Incl cover) A5 notebook, into which many of our writers with be writing their top writing tip or exercise. As they are all round the world, these will be handwritten, scanned and then printed by Jeremy in his own inimitable fashion. This will be classy, useful and unique!

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    Pledge £25 or more About $32

    #Arachne5 short story books

    Set of our first five books: London Lies (stories set in London), Lovers' Lies (stories for romantic cynics), Weird Lies (Fantasy & SciFi - winner of the Sabotage2014 award for best anthology), Mosaic of Air by Cherry Potts (Lesbian Sci Fi/Fantasy/Contemporary)
    more info https://arachnepress.com/books/

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    Cake!

    We take our cake seriously at Arachne, there's usually BIG themed cakes at our launches mostly baked by editor Cherry Potts, though sometimes Katy Darby makes her famous cupcakes/ muffins.
    So if you are within safe cake carrying distance of borough of Lewisham, Cherry will bake you a cake and hand deliver it. Please don't go for this if you have any serious allergies, its a standard domestic kitchen and I cook all sorts of things you might have problems with, but if you like chocolate and what have you, this might be right up your street. Not to GBBO standards, ok? Will taste amazing and be a laugh, not exquisite.

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    Signed copy of OUTCOME

    Our spectacular full colour photographic portraits by Tom Dingley, signed by him and as many of the subjects as we've happened to bump intol

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    Pledge £50 or more About $64

    Kevin Threlfall print

    One of three unique prints on canvas by our cover artist (Weird Lies, With Paper for Feet, Happy Ending NOT Guaranteed) Kevin Threlfall, printed especially for us. 60x40cm. UK only as postage costs would be prohibitive elsewhere. If you are outside the UK and really really keen get in touch and we'll work something out! See pictures in story and gallery.

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    Fiction Critique from Katy Darby

    Katy Darby is co-editor of our Three 'Lies' books and runs Live Lit event Liars' League. She is also a novelist published by Penguin, writing teacher at City, former editor of Litro short story magazine and judge of this year's Cambridge Short Story Prize
    She will give you a professional critique of your fiction at £50 for 5000 words - (Electronic delivery ONLY, please don't send paper) so if you want her to critique something longer, pledge more times! OPTION: personal face-to-face critique (30 min) in London for an extra £25 as an add on- you can pledge more than the £50 through the site, just let us know that's what you want.

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    bespoke story from David Mathews

    here’s the deal – commission David to write something tailored for a friend or a loved one for, say, a Christmas pressie? 1000 words. David needs three weeks’ notice. One week to write and two to edit, with your input if you want it. Copyright stays with David, but you can distribute widely.
    David has been published by us several times, and was one of the winners of the 1st Solstice Shorts competition. And he's funny.

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    Pledge £100 or more About $129

    Become an Arachne Friend

    Become a friend of Arachne: you get:
    a special 'friend' badge, automatic invitation to all book launches, your name in the thank you list in the next book we publish after you join (unless you wish to be anonymous) and one free copy of that book. (Obviously if you arent in the UK, the launch invitation is of limited value, but you can nominate someone else to receive your invitation if you like)

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    Pledge £120 or more About US$ 154

    Book Making Workshop

    A practical 3 hour workshop delivered in your home by Poet/artist Jeremy Dixon (Liberty Tales & The Other Side of Sleep). You will learn to make: a one sheet book; a zig-zag book; a pamphlet-stitch book; and a stab-stitch book. All materials will be provided and Jeremy can run the workshop for up to eight people at a time. Why not invite your writing group, friends and family along to share a fun and enjoyable experience.
    Available Wednesday or weekends within a two-hour drive from Cardiff or along the M4 corridor (as far as London).
    Email any questions to Jeremy at jh_dixon@hotmail.com, or visit See www.hazardpress.co.uk to see examples of his work.

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    ORIGINAL painting by Kevin Threlfall

    Absolutely thrilled with this one. Kevin has done three covers for us so far, and kindly offered us an original oil painting, 'Mist Descending' This is unframed on canvas board and 12inches by 12 inches

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    Pledge £150 or more About $193

    A Weekend in Scotland

    Our Inverness organisers Sherry and Phil are offering to host one person (or a couple) for a weekend in their gorgeous farmhouse outside Inverness. (Their bit is to the right of the archway in the pictures.)This amazing offer covers two nights, Friday/Saturday (dates to be agreed), bed, breakfast (Shared bathroom and lounge) and pick up/drop back to train station or airport in Inverness (if needed). Writers prefered! £150.

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Funding period

- (30 days)