*Update*: First goal reached! The Barest Bones @ $3,192: Print the book; write it while working; no slipcase or deluxities, but a book.
Second goal reached! The Musculature @ $5,770: Print the book at max beauty; pay the editor; write it while working.
Everything that comes in after this is gravy. Pay Johnny a bit more, get your copy of the book. We aren't going to get me out of working but I'm already halfway through the month and resigned to the fact that this boy's gotta work while he writes until he isn't doing it all himself. That's fine. I got good bones, good teeth, and some work ethic.
Thanks everybody. A more wild success wasn't had by any other demi-Swedish lad this year.
My name’s Eric Westerlind. I’m sitting here, happy that it’s not as hot as yesterday.
Now that we know each other (if we didn’t): I’ve written a book. It’s called Ugo, as you’ve surmised from the title of this Kickstarter.
What’s your book about?
It’s about a young man named Ugo.
By about though, I don’t mean to imply ‘the story tells you what Ugo is like and what he does’.
I mean to say ‘about’ like ‘the bee buzzes about the flower’. ‘About’ is much like ‘around’, right?
What is around Ugo?
At the start of the book, a town is around Ugo. His parents are around him. His dog is around him.
There are a lot of folks around Ugo. They talk about what they wish they’d done and talk about what they did do.
What he intuits is that those who talk about what they did had to venture away in order to do.
So he goes.
Where does Ugo go?
He aims at a city called Trang-Un. It is a city he has only imagined, and never visited. Through the mountains.
I choose the word ‘aims’ because no journey is made in a straight line.
Along the way, he encounters all manner of peculiarities.
When I set out to write the book, going on eight years ago now, I wrote for my twelve-year-old self. The self that loves men transformed into trees; that loves potions and powders and pastes and alchemy; and ghosts, god yes!; and giants and adventures in the woods.
I didn’t write it for the me-who-loves-to-wade-thru-jungles-of-text though I admit that part of me exists. I save him for future books.
I’ve found the more people I meet in life—and peculiar Natures I discover— the more they seem to match up with the stories I grew up reading as a kid. This book can't help but be infused with those tales. I started my life in Greek mythology. I started in Tikki Tikki Tembo and the Five Chinese Brothers, in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. Stories that sat in sidecars to the 'real world'.
Then I went to college and got steeped in the literary canon, got too serious about my writing—got cryptic, I suppose. (Funny that word cryptic having ‘crypt’ in it. Reminds me of the Crypt Keeper—ancient, boney storyteller that he was).
But then I left, and I've been gone long enough that I can promise you, it is not a cryptic book. It is a story about banditry on the road, about surviving in conditions you cannot blame on anyone but yourself.
It can be read to anyone. It can be read by anyone.
Are you doing it all by yourself?
No no no. From the outside in:
Matthew Legrice is designing the cover. He is a close friend and an expert.
Stephanie Adams-Santos has already revised the thing once.
Johnny ‘Badheart Wolf’ O’Hanlon will revise and edit the thing again.
Joseph Spece will edit the thing again again.
Ryan Carr may be peppering the book with some of his illustrations if I can find him.
My mother Kim Caroline-Strange, Rob Strange, and Van Roberts are allowing me space on their property to retreat to, in order to finish the book.
My darling Alyssa will hold me when I start to shake. Believe it or not, these things happen.
Purchasing & Costs
How do I get the book?
There is a $38 option to the right where you can purchase the book.
$38? Where’s that number come from?
It costs $25.21 to print my dream book through Friesens, in nearby Canada. ￼
The cover isn’t designed yet, but decisions have been made: I’d like a sleeve for the book, and to have it bound in Pearl linen, among other details. I'll design the interior, because that's what I've done for a living.
Friesen’s minimum is two-hundred books to print, which pins me at $5,042 + KickStarter’s 10%: $5,546 / 200 = $27.73.
That's not $38.
I need to live also, while writing.
Johnny, my editor, he needs to live too.
I need a month to finish. My month costs, fixed, are $2410.
Johnny I want to pay for his diligence. His eyes are fuzzy from Lyme disease and he’s already straining more than he should be. The best I can offer him myself is a dollar a page, and that’s low. I’d like to pay him more. Average rates online suggest $3-$5 a page…
The total though, where I’m at? $8,443 / 200 = $38.38, a magic number.
The Barest Bones: $3,192: Print the book; write it while working; no slipcase or deluxities, but a book.
The Musculature: $5,770: Print the book at max beauty; pay the editor; write it while working.
The Bag in Hand: $8,667: Print the book at max beauty; pay the editor $2 a page; go on retreat for October; writer’s journal (daily updates from the island, process thoughts, pictures of mushrooms, etc.)
World/Destiny: Beyond $8,667: increase the editor’s pay-rate; book tour.
I can break numbers down further if we get anywhere near beyond that, but the danger in dreaming is Narcissus’s fate.
Let’s stay tight to what’s right.
How do I know you write alright, or have reasonable opinions.
1) There’s a video up top, me being honest.
2) There’s stuff up on the internet. From newest to older:
- There’s a story about that guy who pumped prices on EpiPens, when he runs off to a cave in Connecticut, walls the place in mirrors, and blinds himself in search of deeper meaning.
- There’s one about the First Poet Laureate of Mars, his catastrophes.
- And yeah, poetry.
- There’s a vampire story I wrote on a postcard.
- There’s a werewolf story I wrote at a pizza parlor in France when I was broke there.
There’s more too, plenty more, but that’s what I’d share for this. Links?
3) I have two editors who care about quality almost more than they care about me.
Johnny ‘Badheart Wolf’ O’Hanlon
Johnny is a good friend of mine. We’ve been sharing writing more and more, but have been doing so since college.
He has the syrup, you hear? This boy is full. He’s also riddled with Lyme, and so his editing of my book, and the writing of his own, is taxing times thirteen hundred.
He’s finished his book about meeting the love of his life—and having written her from the veins out, he’s written himself the same.
Let’s call it HMS for now, but the book will sail under different titling in 2018.
We are making that next, so I’m offering interested parties the opportunity to give us a head-start & get themselves a copy.
There is an option to the right where you can buy both books for $76.76. I love whole/decimal parallel.
You can try the latest draft of his short fiction, The Runnel, a dramatic tale of Curse, if you’d like.
Please remember, as a prize: this will not be shipping the same day as Ugo.
So I will walk into his office with probably that, and be chastised, and then you and I will both benefit.
Prize & Donation Tiers
• $1: The Busker's Nod. Thank you for stopping by. You’ll get daily alerts if we hit The Bag in Hand goal.
• $7: The Grandma’s Thanks: A hand-written letter from me pretending to be my Grandma Dorla Jill.
• $11: Postcard from a Witch: Pretty self-explanatory.
• $15: Peg’leg Legacy: Your name in the book’s acknowledgements, as if written by a pirate. E.G. Matthew Legrice = Bathview Churchmice.
• $21: Tarot Obscuro: Tarot reading by Stephanie Adams-Santos, delivered emailishly. Also, you in the acknowledgements.
• $28: Ghostography: A photograph of me over the manuscript with you photoshopped in, rubbing my shoulders. And the aforementioned Peg'leg'ing.
• $38: Ugo, the book: A copy of the book. Hooray! Signed? You decide. Hooray! Also: you in the acknowledgements: if you prefer your name not Peg’leg’d (see above), you could ask me to not do that.
• $50: Picture Book: Ugo, the book, and a one-off drawing of Ugo, pencil and paper, by me.
• $76: Ugo + HMS: The book, plus Johnny’s book, finishing up here in 2018. See above for details on JOH's book.
• $100: The Books, Plus: A hand-written letter of thanks and a photo of me as a child and a special rock.
• $106: The Books, Plus Plus: A copy of ROADS by Joseph Spece & Swarm Queen’s Crown by Stephanie Adams-Santos (poetry not to be missed) and a hand-written letter and photo of me as a child. No rock, sorry.
• $160: The Mom’s Birthday: Ugo and HMS and a hand-written letter each month, from me. Your choice of stationary. Your choice of date. And a book of my choosing on your birthday from my shelves.
• $228: Box of Magic: Ugo and HMS, and the Box of Magic, filled. Photo in the details, at the bottom. Follow this footnote: *
All told: the book will be finished by Halloween, god-willing. It'll be in the editor's hands for cleaning. It'll be handed to Friesen's with your kind contribution, and it'll be shrink-wrapped on your door shortly thereafter.
Risks and challenges
I will finish this book. No question of that. It might not get printed this way, if it goes unfunded or underfunded. I will simply try again another time.
There might be some shipping error in which fifty copies are soaked. I will pay for insurance. It's $155. They'll be replaced.
Your copy might get damaged enroute! What the hell were they doing! It's shrink-wrapped and well-packaged! Let me know. I'll figure either reimbursement or just give you my copy.
I'm not printing-on-demand, let me be clear. This is the print run. If we hit the goal, the lowest goal, there are liable to be extra copies. I'm planning to get those out too, but I will make sure you get yours.
Thank you so much for stopping by and supporting just by your digital tracks.
In many ways, this is unreal.
-ewLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (20 days)