Share this project


Share this project

Surviving the World: Photocomic Page-A-Day Calendars's video poster

Over five years of photocomic archives condensed down into 365 pages of chalk-free humor and education Read more

Boston, MA Comics
Share this project
pledged of $12,000 goal
seconds to go


This project was successfully funded on July 10, 2013.

Over five years of photocomic archives condensed down into 365 pages of chalk-free humor and education

Boston, MA Comics
Share this project

About this project


Oh man, look at these beauties!
Oh man, look at these beauties!

Hey, we did it!  We reached our goal!  Thank you!  So here are some stretch goals moving forward to make the calendar even better!

Because we met our goal by the challenge deadline, everyone receiving a physical reward will also get a set of STW coasters with their reward!

  • $5,000: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED! Everyone's calendar will include three original comics!
  • $10,000: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED! The calendar will include another three original comics! That's six total original comics!
  • $15,000: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED!  Sick of only hurricanes getting official names (and winter storms getting unofficial names)? Well, each page of the calendar will now include a name for all the clouds you may see that day! Cloudstorm naming!
  • $17,500: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED!  Sick of everyone trying to impress you with their word-of-the-day that they learned and are now trying to work into every conversation? Well, each page of the calendar will now include a rudimentary word-of-the-day, like "house" or "cat" or "ball" or "eat", to give you the perfect complementary response to your annoying co-worker!
  • $20,000: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED!  Each page of the calendar will include a new fake international holiday for you to celebrate, giving you a new back-up reason to party every night!
  • $22,500: ACHIEVEMENT ACHIEVED! Each calendar will include a total of 12 original comics! One for each month!
  • $25,000: Each calendar will have a soundtrack listing included, with a different song named to accompany every single page!

Hello there! Grab a seat, let's get class started, and I'll tell you what this is all about.

Page-a-day calendars.  Whoa!

Wait, wait, start at the beginning.

I'm Dr. Dante Shepherd.  For the past five years, I've been producing Surviving The World, a daily photocomic with a chalkboard and labcoat and lessons touching on just about everything (science, literature, creeping people out, you name it).  The comic is a mix of humor and education combined with complete destruction of the fourth wall.

STW has been used in classrooms as a teaching material, for a wedding proposal, as a daily mantra, and it's funny, too!

So why page-a-day calendars?

Readers have been asking for some kind of STW collection for years.  The format of the comic traditionally is presented as stand-alone content, so the comics would fit seamlessly into the page-a-day format.  Further, there are close to 1800 comics in the STW archive at this point, so there's a wide range to select the best material from.

Meanwhile, instead of getting the '365 Days of Cats" yet again, you can relive those fond memories of the classroom!  You know, the times when you weren't suffering chalkdust torture.

What else is great about these calendars?

You would get 365 days of content.  You get a ready means of sharing different pages with friends and co-workers - an easy way to get introduced to STW or to introduce someone else to it.  You could potentially rip off every page and decorate your cubicle like a calendar mathematic John Nash.  Further, all pages will be printed in color!  How great is that?

And to thank you for your contribution to the campaign, there are number of pretty cool rewards available at the different tiers, many of which will only be available through this Kickstarter.  These rewards may even increase your happiness, which, hey, who doesn't want that?

What are some of these great rewards?

Besides the calendar?  Alright, let's talk about them!

First and foremost, anyone who donates will be recognized on the Surviving The World site as a member of the Dean's List, where you'll also be given a nickname for your fellow classmates to call you by (if you so choose or whatever).  Because, hey, everyone who helps is helping, so thanks!

If you get a calendar as part of this Kickstarter, you will also receive a STW report card which you can use to either grade yourself or someone you know!  This will only be available as part of the Kickstarter, so if you'd like to get one, you need to get your calendar early.

There are new STW prints (available only through the Kickstarter campaign) that will be signed/personalized, and at higher levels, individual slate blackboards that can be personalized, too.

What about velociraptors?  Talk to us about dinosaurs, we think they are awesome.

What about them? Oh, you mean velociraptor impressions like this one, based on suggestions from the audience?  Well, yes!  Everyone who donates $75 and higher will receive a USB drive shaped like a dinosaur, full of videos of velociraptor impressions.  A velociraptor who is watching Jurassic Park in the theater and is upset at the depiction of his own kind, a velociraptor who is running for political office, a velociraptor prom . . . all the best, some potentially based on your suggestions.

The USB that could hold all the velociraptor impressions you ever wanted
The USB that could hold all the velociraptor impressions you ever wanted

Those sound pretty great!  But what else?

Well, for a limited few, I will actually handcraft wooden mallets that you can use to play Thor or do whatever non-violent mallet thing you'd like to do.  I have treasured the one I've had for over a decade (even brought it to class throughout college, just because I could; perhaps it would look great in your office?) and I bet you would love one, too.

Stop!  Mallet time.
Stop! Mallet time.

I've also done a stand-up-storytelling session at a number of colleges, and would be happy to deliver your calendar and other goods directly to you (if you live in the continental United States) and do a session in your region.

What if we want to make you suffer?

Well, one person can force me to break my New Year's Resolution not to eat any raisins (because I hate raisins; this was a sound resolution) by making me eat a pound of raisins.  But only one person, because I like living.

Anything else?

Actually, yes!  There are a number of STW items which you can directly choose to include as a reward if you add it on to your backing tier.  These can include additional calendars as well.

First, select the reward tier that you're interested in, with the amount necessary to support the campaign at that tier.  Then, make your donation an additional amount to reflect the add-on item that you wanted.  This will cover the shipping of both items, too.  The pricing for the add-on items are as follows:

  • Extra calendar = $25 
  • STW labcoat = $36 
  • A signed labcoat  = $45 
  • A Happiness pint glass = $10 
  • Set of four pint glasses = $35 
  • 200 Proof Coffee coffee mug = $13.50 

How do we know you can pull this off?

That's a fair question!  All I am is a lowly chemical engineering professor, and if you wanted me to define fugacity (a real, not actually made-up term although it certainly sounds like it should be), I'd be much better at that than I would be at assembling everything I've described.

Which is why this campaign will be working hand-in-hand with Topatoco and their Make This Thing division!  They've helped handle the assembly and shipping of several previous Kickstarter campaigns, and have done an excellent job of it.  So you know your goods will be in topnotch hands!

Ok, I wasn't paying attention.  You said 'class' and I zoned out.  Can you summarize?

Page-a-day calendars made with comics from Surviving The World.  You'll love them.  Thanks for your support!

Risks and challenges

The general design of the calendar is complete, and much of the additional material has already been prepared. Working with Topatoco and Make That Thing should help ensure that the quality of the goods and delivery will be completed to the highest degree and on time. So there shouldn't be too many concerns moving forward! In addition, I will be able to devote significant attention right now to making sure the calendar is delivered to the printers with more than enough lead-time, so all systems are go!

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter


  • . . . do you realize what crushed chalk powder in an envelope would look like? Are you trying to get me in trouble with every government agency?

    Last updated:
  • The calendar will be for 2014! It will arrive in more than enough time for you to use it in 2014 or for you to use it as a gift at the holidays. Which, yes, is an INCREDIBLY long way off, but you know, still . . .

    Last updated:


  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    7 backers

    TEACHER'S PET: My hearty thanks, as well as being listed with a STW-sanctioned nickname for your contribution on the Dean's List, to be posted on STW.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    382 backers

    HONOR ROLL: One page-a-day calendar, being named to the Dean's List, as well as an official STW report card for you to fill out as you wish.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $45 or more

    75 backers

    MAGNA CUM LAUDE: One page-a-day calendar, the Dean's List, a STW report card, and a signed limited STW print to be available only through the Kickstarter campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $55 or more

    47 backers

    FELLOWSHIP: Not one but TWO page a day calendars, the Dean's List, a report card, and a limited signed print.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    31 backers

    THE AV CLUB: Everything in MAGNA CUM LAUDE, plus a USB drive containing a new series of Dante's velociraptor impressions. Oh, and the USB is shaped like a dinosaur.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    29 backers

    THE SCHOOLMARM: Everything in THE AV CLUB, plus a small slate chalkboard, individually personalized with a lesson related to a subject of your choosing.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    3 backers Limited (7 left of 10)

    THE BOARD OF EDUCATION: Everything in THE SCHOOLMARM, plus you will choose one of the velociraptor impressions to be included on the USB drive for all to see.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    4 backers Limited (1 left of 5)

    WOODSHOP: Everything in THE BOARD OF EDUCATION, plus you will get a wooden mallet handcrafted by Dante, similar to the one that has appeared in many STW comics.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    THE CAFETERIA FROM HELL: Everything in THE BOARD OF EDUCATION, plus Dante will eat an entire pound of raisins and record the punishment for your enjoyment.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,250 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    THE FIELD TRIP: Everything in WOODSHOP (including a mallet!), which will be delivered to you anywhere in the continental US by Dante.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States

Funding period

- (30 days)