About this project
The gods are as human as we are. Only faster, stronger, wiser than the rest of us.
Time and history have shaped the stories of their lives into myth and legend.
Their descendents walk among us today, still fighting their ancient wars.
Perhaps one of their sacred places hides near your town.
Perhaps you are one of them.
It's a series of novels about factions of ancient demigods and the everyday people caught in the conflict. Secret societies vie for control of the last corners of the Earth where the Mythic Age survives. It's a world of alliances and betrayals, cults and politics, friendship and power. It's what happens when you make a wish, and the horror of it coming true.
Early readers have compared the series very favourably to Neil Gaiman's American Gods, George RR Martin's A Game of Thrones, and Philip Pullman's The Golden Compass.
“Myers’ characters inhabit a world rich with political intrigue; the machinations of aristocratic families descended from ancient gods. Fellwater is taut, poignant, and imaginative.” - Jordan Stratford, author of “Mechanicals” and “Wollestonecraft”
The books are finished, but not ready. They need editing.
As an independent publisher, I know readers deserve a professional product, which is why I need to hire an editor, and then pay someone to lay out the books and finalize the covers. This campaign is to offset some of those costs.
Pledgers will receive some great exclusive rewards, including audiobooks and a never-before-seen novella set in the world of Fellwater.
Book One: Fellwater. The series begins with Katie and Eric, two twenty-somethings who, while having problems in their relationship, accidentally become involved in the struggle between two factions of an ancient secret society, descended from Celtic and Roman gods.
Book Two: Hallowstone. As Eric grieves the death of his lover, the flamboyant Heathcliff Weatherby Wednesday helps him find her killer. But in return, Heathcliff makes some unusual demands. As the mystery deepens, Eric grows unsure of who to trust.
Book Three: Clan Fianna. Accused of a crime he didn’t commit, Eric is banished from the Brigantians. While in exile, he discovers a secret that threatens everyone he loves. But his friends, convinced of his guilt, don’t believe him. Alone and afraid, Eric struggles to prove his innocence.
Spinoff Novella: Jillian Brighton. Thirteen year old Jillian Brighton receives an unexpected gift: a telescope that can see into parallel worlds. But her suspicious parents find that it might have been stolen, and they want it sent back to where it came from.
Spinoff Novella: The Seekers. Three brothers journey into the far north, searching for "The Old Man", a sage who they believe holds the answers to all their questions. But on the way they make some disturbing discoveries about each other. This is a never-before-seen title, available EXCLUSIVELY to supporters of this project.
I've published ten other books, mostly nonfiction, and including a tabletop strategy game. In 2013 I was a TED speaker, at TEDxGuelphU. And a previous Kickstarter project of mine, "Clear and Present Thinking", created a free college-level textbook on logic and critical thinking which is now used in many colleges and universities, including Canada's biggest: the University of Toronto.
I'm a philosophy professor by day. So I know about power relations, and moral dilemmas, and the metaphysics of a believable and interesting fantasy world. I've also got a Drama degree, so I know about characterization, dramatic timing and tension, and the power of language and storytelling. I've put these skills together to create what I hope you will agree is a compelling and memorable series of novels.
I like writing fantasy because good fantasy bends the rules of reality precisely to draw special attention to reality, and our real lives. Good fantasy can be full of magic spells, fantastic monsters, and amazing landscapes – but in the end it's really about people, confronting the natural immensities of fate and free will, reality and illusion, good and evil, life and death, and all things in between. Of course you can explore such things in any genre. But I just think it's interesting and fun to do that in fantasy. And that's what I'm doing with Fellwater.
You're a fan of science fiction, fantasy, and drama, and you prefer to support independent artists and creators.
You enjoy stories about conflicted heroes who don't necessarily get the girl in the end. (Sorry for the spoiler there.)
You're the kind of person who wonders, as some of these characters wonder, what the rat race is really for, and whether there's more to this life than what meets the eye.
If any of this sounds familiar, then I've got a series of books for you.
Thank you for your support!
Risks and challenges
Very few. Since the majority of backer rewards are delivered electronically, those rewards will not get lost in the mail. The print books will be drop-shipped directly from the printer, which reduces costs and hassles for me, and improves delivery time for you.
I'm going to use CreateSpace.com as my printer. It's an Amazon company, so if it goes bankrupt, it will be because the entire internet has crashed, and we'll all have bigger problems than an unfulfilled Kickstarter campaign.
All the backer rewards are finished, and almost ready to go. They just need, well, a little editing. The audiobooks are not yet recorded, but I already have all the equipment that I need for the purpose.
One notable "challenge" is the fact that this campaign is set to end right in the middle of my exams. I will be up to my neck in marking papers for most of the month of May, and I'll have less time to work with the editor. But this is mostly a scheduling problem, not a logistical one. I've therefore set a delivery date of September 2014 for all backer rewards. But it's entirely possible that things will be done much sooner than that. Backers will be kept informed by frequent updates, and posts on my Twitter and Facebook pages.
And if my editors disappear? I've a backup plan for that, too. After completing my last Kickstarter project, "Clear and Present Thinking", I found myself in the middle of a small network of writers, editors, and designers. So if my primary editor becomes unable to finish the job, I have several others I can call on right away.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
At this time, the primary editor is already selected, and already at work on the first book in the series. I will not be able to even consider hiring additional editors unless the project reaches its stretch goals. Having said that, if you are very interested in working on this project, I welcome you to write to me and let me know.
$2000: for editor(s) for the first two books in the series.
$500: for layout and design.
8% for Kickstarter's cut, and various bank fees
20% to fulfill backer rewards
Grand total = $3200
The target of $3,200 should be enough to complete the first two books in the series; I expect to pay out of pocket for the others. But if we succeed beyond that threshold, here's what we'll do.
At $4000: we'll edit all five books in the series.
At $5000: we'll commission more art for the web site, and re-design the front covers. All supporters will be the first to see everything. We'll also do an audiobooks version of The Seekers, and make it available to everyone who pledged $25 or more.
Beyond $5k, we will commit the extra funds to researching and writing the next books in the series. As soon as the next title is ready, those who pledged $20 or more will receive an ebook edition, and those who pledged $25 or more will receive a paperback copy.
The Bechdel Test, for those who don't know, is a measure of the presence of female characters in a story, and the importance of their relationships with each other. To pass the test, the story must meet three criteria: (1) it has at least two female characters who (2) talk to each other, (3) about a topic other than a man.
Most of the books in the series pass the test. The first one doesn't, only because I wrote it in 2006 and I didn't know about the Bechdel test at the time. Later, when some friends pointed it out to me, I found it persuasive, and made certain that the later books did pass the test.
Incidentally, now that the books are being edited, I've an opportunity to correct that omission.
"The Seekers" passes a different kind of Bechdel test: it has at least two African characters who talk to each other about a topic other than a White person.
Choose the $25 reward which offers the audiobooks. I'll throw in the ebooks to backers at that level who want them.
I was going to create a new backer reward at that level, but decided it would be simpler to edit an existing one. That's how I discovered that I can't edit the description of a backer reward which has at least one person requesting it. (Which makes perfect sense, really. We can't have project creators pulling bait-and-switch cons on their backers.)
So, I'll say it here in the FAQ: backers who pledge the $25 for the audiobook(s) will be offered the entire series in eBook format as well.
At this time, I plan to self-publish the books. I have an account with Library & Archives Canada, which allows me to issue my own ISBN's, and to run my own imprint: "Northwest Passage Books". I'll be using Amazon CreateSpace for the paperback editions, and the ebooks will be published on Kindle and on Kobo.
However, self-published writers have a *very* hard time promoting their books and getting them into stores. So I will send queries and pitches to a few literary agents, too.
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