'If the world was going to end in seven days, how would you spend your last week alive? The End examines how many different people react (or refuse to react) to their own impending doom.
The End is a comic book anthology series with 2 stories in each issue. Each issue is completely self-contained, meaning you can read one issue without having read the other. Plus, each issue is based on a central theme linking the two stories. The themes (in chronological order) are Madness, Romance, Fantasy, Hope, & Survival. In addition, that means that each story will have a different tone and artistic style. This will lead to a sense of surprise from issue to issue, because though you might know the theme, you still never know just what kind of end-of-the-world story you are going to get.
Each story takes place in the same universe, where a series of comets will collide with the planet and rip it apart. No characters from other stories interact with others, as they are meant to be self-contained.
Who Are The Artists?
All the stories are written by me, Shawn Padraic Murphy, yet each story is drawn by a different artist (so techinically it's an anthology, but not quite).
Past artists who have worked on the comic are Stefano Cardeselli (Heavy Metal), Ava Berman (Super Squirrel), Brad Bowersox, Rand Arrington, Jacob Warrenfeltz (Villians, Trickster), Marcella Kim, & Wu-Gene Hong,
Issue 4 & 5 will feature covers once again by Robyn Haley. The stories for Issue #4 will be illustrated by Lauren Sparks and Tina Lee. Issue #5 is illustrated by Sonia Liao & Kathleen Parker
What The $2,000.00 Is For
The money is for the cost of the pages from the artists I hire, taking into account shipping fees, all payment fees, and Kickstarter fees. None of this covers the printing costs of the actual comic books, as I will be paying those out of pocket.
What About Printing?
I will print a run of 200 copies for each issue of 4 & 5 to sell to cons and give to reviewers, which is not factored into this Kickstarter price; this Kickstarter is solely for funds I need to hire artists. Combining the artists fees and the printing costs is not an amount I believe I can achieve on Kickstarter. Since the series is stand alone, I know from experience that it is easier to sell because readers can chose a theme that interests them rather than simply start at Issue #1, and I know I can sell through all 200 copies of each issue within 1-2 years on the con circuit.
Where Will 'The End' 4 & 5 Be Available?
The End (all five issues) will be available on LushComics.com, IndyPlanet.com, iBookStore, & Amazon in digital form. They are will be available on IndyPlanet as Print-To-Order. Issues 1, 2, & 3 are currently available on all the above platforms. It was currently accepted onto Comixology (Issues 1), but has yet to appear in the store.
I will attempt to sell out of my The End single issues for all 5 issues in the next 2 years, while raising awareness of the series. The main goal is the near future is to compile all 5 issues into a graphic novel and publish it through CreateSpace to make it available on Amazon & Barnes and Noble (and continue to sell at conventions), but I will also be trying to get another company to publish it to increase viewership and sales.
The End was originally envisioned as a 10 issue mini-series, with one issue coming out each year. I have the stories ready for the next 5 issues, but due to a limited budget I have to put the series on hiatus after Issue 5 and the graphic novel unless this Kickstarter makes more money than I expect.
Stretch Goal #1 - The Graphic Novel ($3,000.00)
If my Kickstarter gets over $3,000.00, I will jump-start the production of the graphic novel to get it done within the end of the year (rather than 2 years from now) and add it as a Reward. I will also include many new rewards should I start to exceed my $1,000.00 goal. This extra $1,000.00 will pay for the cost of organizing all the comics, editing text errors, art errors, format it all into a single PDF/single file TIFs for all the various formats needed for each and every publication's specifications. I will pay someone to do the above immidiately. If I don't meet the goal, I'm going to have to do it all myself, which, since I am inexperienced with Adobe, will take a lot longer than I want it to.
Plus, the graphic novel will have a bonus 7 page short story (text) in the view of a diary entry only available through the graphic novel. In addition, the graphic novel will feature over 25 pages of character conception art for all the various covers and stories from a variety of different artists.
Because the sidebar can be a little confusing, I am condensing the rewards here for easier viewing. Look for the reward below, and chose the appropriate selection on the right. All prices already include shipping (unless you live outside of the USA, and obviously digital comics don't require shipping)
For the comic books themselves, you can chose from Issue #1 (Madness), #2 (Romance), #3 (Fantasy), #4 (Hope), & #5 (Survival).
Additional / Add-On Rewards:
GET YOUR IDEA ON HOW YOU WOULD SPEND YOUR FINAL DAYS PRINTED ($20.00): How would you spend your last seven days on Earth? Donate $25.00 and get your sentence published in Issue #4. You can make it crazy, funny, or serious.
MAGNET SET ($9.00): Get a series of 3 magnets, all from the covers for Issue 3, 4, & 5 below.
T-SHIRT ($30.00): Get a full detailed image of The End #4's cover on a black shirt. See Update #8 to help me chose the color for the text on the shirt.
Bonus Mechanaflux Comic ($7.00): Fantasy, full-color comic written by The End's author (me) and The End #2's artist (Ava Berman).
All 5 Comics Digital + Physical + 5 Prints ($50.00)
Most rewards haven't been combined; but you can combine items if you donate a certain amount (So if you want to submit a quote and get Issue #4, simply donate $30.00 [$25.00 for the quote / $5.00 for a single issue] and tell me you want both when the Kickstarter is over).
Below are the covers of issues 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5.
When Will They Be Available?
Issue #5 was already sent to the printers because it was just recently finished. Issue #4 is 90% completed. I expect to have all the files finished by June.
Below you will find a page from The End by each artist. You can see more pages and original sketches in the Updates section.
Risks and challenges
The risks involved are very minor. I have fully paid for all the Cover Art and Interior Art (except for the one story still being finished) and almost all of the art is finished.
However, I originally envisioned this as a 10-12 issue mini-series, and the challenges I face are not enough money to continue this title (though 4 & 5 will still be completed either way). A successful Kickstarter would make me jump-start the graphic novel and continue the story knowing enough people liked the idea and funded it.
1 DIGITAL COPY: Your choice of any 1 copy from The End 1 - 5 (PDF). Chose from #1 (Madnes), #2 (Romance), #3 (Fantasy), #4 (Hope), & #5 (Survival). PLUS: Anyone who donates $2.00 or more dollars with GET A CREDIT in Issue #4 detailing them as a BACKER.
BONUS REWARD - Mechanaflux Comic (fantasy & full-color). This is available as an add-on to anyone who donates $7.00 more than previous donations. Please email me if you have this and another reward selected. You may also just simply just chose this as a reward.
GET YOUR IDEA ABOUT WHAT YOU WOULD DO IF THE WORLD WAS ENDING PRINTED! If the world was going to end in one week, how would you spend your last seven days alive? Submit a 1-2 sentence entry. It can be serious, funn,y or just plain crazy.
PHYSICAL COPY 5 + 5 DIGITAL COPIES: You will get a physical copy of all 5 issues of The End. You will also get all 5 issues of The End in digital form (PDF). This is the same as buying the physical copies reward, but now you also get each digital verson for only $1.00 a piece.
HELP CONTRIBUTE TO THE SHORT STORY FOR THE GRAPHIC NOVEL (+ get all the awards above [5 Digital Comics, 5 Physical Comics, 5 8x10 Prints]
For $250.00, I will tell you the general idea for my short story (text, not a comic book) that will be included in the graphic novel in the near future, and you will help me with ideas for the plot, character, etc. You will get a writing credit for the story in the graphic novel. PLEASE NOTE: This is not applicable unless I meet my stretch goal for the graphic novel. If you are outside the US, you must be able to hold a conversation through email and/or phone in English.