Final hours, and thanks from Team Erfworld
As I write this, the Erfabet project is in its last hours. The final page drawn by David (G is for Gobwin Knob) is posted, and the one remaining page will be drawn by Xin.
I just wanted to let everyone know how much you've helped us, and about some of the decisions we made along the way.
I took everybody's advice seriously, and the bulk of you said that we should not add rewards to this project because of the risk of overpromising and overreaching and getting into similar trouble as the first project.
So we did not! And that's wise and sane and perfectly fine. We had considered doing a 2014 calendar, but David wants to first make sure he can turn out the epilogues we're already committed to. If he feels he can do that and a calendar (in time to print it) too, then we will add the calendar to the next Kickstarter.
A few people, though, were pretty insistent in their feedback that we add some more high-level rewards. I was hard pressed to think of one that wouldn't involve committing to a major amount of new work or laying out new capital, but I did come up with this:
There is a new $500 reward tier called "Erfworld Soap Box." Donors at this level get to take over the Erfworld News for a week to promote their own projects or whatever they want to say to the readers of this comic.
I don't know if anyone will be interested in this or not. But for those of you highly-generous souls who mainly just want to offer monetary support to the comic in general, this is a good way for you to do it, because you can use the space to call attention to anything else in the world that you're inclined to support, too.
Thanks to the additional pledge money, we now have a new team of pros in place and working on bringing the website together. My dream is to have it launch before GenCon, but I can't make that promise. We just intend it to happen soon. Stuff is getting done on it even as I type. We think we have the money now to make it happen with this team, but of course with one day to go, more would not hurt. We haven't quite reached that $36,000 quote that stopped us dead last year, but I don't believe we'll need that much with this plan.
David and I have made big steps in developing our work process, and it really started to click for the last batch of pages. He has learned quite a lot about drawing Erfworld. It's worth noting that for the first time in Erfworld's history, we announced a schedule and then stayed with it for 35 updates. That is a big part of what David brings to the table and I appreciate it a lot. And thanks to you, he and I will get a chance to work in person at GenCon, which will really help us cement our collaboration.
The Next Project - Book 3
We're not going to launch the Book 3 Kickstarter until we're well into the epilogues, maybe even finished with them. We have more work to do on developing and refining our process, and the real test will come when David and I are working together to tell the story. I want to see how that goes before deciding how to proceed with the next book, and the 25 updates/50 illustrations of the epilogues will be the perfect test.
Victory Lap and Thanks
It was a strange 35 days. We basically "won" this project in the first three days, then intentionally cooled it down. I'm not sorry about that, and I'm just as grateful and thrilled about how we've done as I was a month ago. Every day of the project has been a victory lap since then, as far as I'm concerned.
Yes, there were things I could have added—i.e. new promises I might have made—that might have inflated the final figure. But that's not the goal here. Making Erfworld is the goal, and being reasonable and staying sustainable will help that happen more in the long run than trying to pester additional support out of you just because we can.
I'm in awe of your generosity and the love you've expressed for our work, and it just makes me want to plow more into the story and make it as good as it can possibly be. We'll be counting on your help for the next one, but let's enjoy this and we'll get there when we're ready.
Donors at all levels, and those who helped spread the word and give their feedback, thank you, everybody! You mean everything to Team Erfworld.