What is Iceland, defrosted all about?
This is the story of one Englishman’s obsession with a half-frozen, roughly duck-shaped island in the cold north Atlantic. That Englishman is me. That duck-shaped island is Iceland. It’s an obsession that started with hearing Sigur Rós in a record shop and one that shows no sign of abatement.
This is a story that is less about wars over codfish, flight-halting volcanoes or globe-shattering financiers, and more about relaxing in natural hotpots, sharing barbeques in howling winter storms, eating waffles and rhubarb jam whilst watching playful Arctic foxes and desperately, desperately searching for the elusive Northern Lights (that might not exist anyway).
Loosely based on a circuitous route around Iceland, this trip becomes the line on to which the dried fish of interesting stories and exciting tales are hung. It concentrates on the places, people and experiences I found in Iceland, soundtracked by the coolest Icelandic musicians, all wrapped up in the warmest lopapeysa and jump started with the strongest coffee.
Despite all these adventures, I found that the real Iceland is well beyond the confines of a hire car, or a weekend trip to Reykjavik. It doesn’t exist in current guidebooks and can’t be brought with a stuffed puffin toy. The real Iceland is one where warmth, friendship, creativity and quality of life abound, making this small community into something really special. It is the story of an obsession that verges on a love letter; a constant yearning for this special place, with an undercurrent of understanding and uncovering of the real Iceland.
I have travelled to Iceland on many occasions; I pretend to forget the exact number. My wife knows the exact number. Iceland has always appealed to me. At first it became an adventure to travel there. Somewhere on the edge of the Arctic. Somewhere impossibly remote and exciting. Now it feels like a sanctuary, somewhere to go to be with friends, to relax, and hope the Northern Lights show up. I don’t pretend to know everything about Iceland. Actually, I do, but my Icelandic friends are very good at correcting me in a firm, yet empathetic manner. They have shown considerable patience with me turning up at short notice, crashing weddings and family events, borrowing warm clothes and constantly asking questions.
What's the funding for?
Iceland, Defrosted deserves to be produced into a high quality, enjoyable book, both in an old fashioned paperback, and into a new fangled e-book edition. I have the skills to produce decent prose, but I need professional help in editing, typesetting, design and even flat-out, really dull stuff such as ISBN and bar codes. Iceland, Defrosted needs to be set free into the wilds of the internet and book stores. Any residual funds will be used in marketing.
Will it be any good?
Yes, it will be the best piece of literature ever written about Iceland. Well, I hope so. I think it's pretty good. You can read an excerpt of Iceland, Defrosted here.
You've already reached your funding target, why bother?
Iceland, Defrosted reached its funding target after an outstanding 5 days. This means its definitely going to be published. However, there were still 25 days left of funding. I’m not going to waste this opportunity. I’m not going to set a ‘stretch goal’ as they say here on Kickstarter, but I am going to use this window to promote the heck out of Iceland, Defrosted. Additional funding will be used to advertise, promote and generally launch Iceland, Defrosted into the market.
Iceland, Defrosted is going to be an actual book. I still can't quite believe that! That is thanks to my backers, for their unwavering support and help. I’ve not just had financial backing, but moral and actual help too. Even Laylow, Eliza Newman, Lily & Fox and somewhat bizarrely the Major of Reykjavík Jón Gnarr have helped to further the reach of this project.
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge - writing the book - is done. There are other challenges ahead. I'm sure that the editing process will be difficult - not just because it will cost half the funding(!) - but to have a harsh, critical eye looking over my work, like an over-zealous teacher is not something I relish.
The biggest risk, however, is here and now. I need Kickstarter and people like you (Kickstarters, Kickstarterists?) to get Iceland, Defrosted off my hard drive and on to your coffee table. Without your support, I've just spent a huge chunk of my life writing something that will never be read by anyone else. I'm not prepared to let that happen. I want my friends, my family and all the kind hearted Icelanders who helped me with this project to be proud of it.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)