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The shocking, revealing and completely unofficial memoir of DC Comics' legendary London office, to celebrate Vertigo's 20th anniversary
The shocking, revealing and completely unofficial memoir of DC Comics' legendary London office, to celebrate Vertigo's 20th anniversary
258 backers pledged £5,636 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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£5,636

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We are SOOO close to reaching our Stretch Target of £5,500! It would be fantastic if we could finish on a high by reaching this before the end (only 7 hours left)! Please, please PLEASE, pledge now so we can send you a beautiful Rian Hughes' designed enamel badge as well as the book! Thank you so much!!

“…For a few glorious years only, before cost-cutting set in, there was... Vertigo's 'British Office' - the comics equivalent of the Loaded HQ in the ‘90s. Vodka, mushrooms, Es, sex, money, travel and the pure unleashed creativity of young people having a good time together.” – Grant Morrison, author of Supergods, All Star Superman, Batman Inc. and The Invisibles.

Book Excerpt:
"Comics were undoubtedly in my blood from day one. I had 'four colour funnies' running through my veins before I’d even heard the expression. Cut me and I bled cyan, magenta, yellow and black. I inhaled the musty smell of old comics, as if they were perfume. I sweated Indian ink and I came in process white. It was my destiny to work in comics."

As a life-long comic fan I finally achieved my dream job working for my favourite comics publisher, DC Comics, in 1993. However, I was completely unprepared for the sheer hedonism that was to follow.

Timed to coincide with the 20th Anniversary of Vertigo, this memoir explores how I became the first British member of the DC editorial staff, and the comics professionals and celebrities I met on the way up and down, including Grant Morrison, Peter Milligan, Jamie Hewlett, Mark Millar, Garth Ennis, Philip Bond, Paul Gambaccini, Glyn Dillon, Jonathan Ross, The Spice Girls, Blur, Adam Ant, and many, many more. It reveals the crazy halcyon days of the British comics publishing, and blows the lid off the debauchery and excess that was part and parcel of the industry.

Candid, uncensored and revealing: this is the completely unofficial and unendorsed story of DC Comic’s infamous Vertigo UK office written by one who was the heart of the drug-fuelled creative whirlwind. Everything you’ve heard is true. But you’ve only heard of half of it.

The book covers, limited edition print, and badges are all designed by legendary comic artist, font designer and decent, all round good egg, Rian Hughes. Rian designed the logos on many of the Vertigo comics I worked on including: Kill Your Boyfriend, Face and Tainted.

All the money raised here will go towards paying Rian, editorial staff, print and shipping costs.

STRETCH TARGETS!

Well, seeing as we achieved our funding in just two weeks - thanks to all you "Babylonians"! - here are a few Stretch Targets we've come up with, as promised. If you can think of anything additional you'd like to see, just drop us a line!

BADGE UPGRADE!!

If we reach £5,500 we'll upgrade everybody's badges to a deluxe, enamel coated, metallic, collectable pin, created by Termight Replicas. Don't forget these have been designed by Rian (Dan Dare, Tales From Beyond Science) Hughes, and are severely limited, so are bound to be a hot item in years to come!

BONUS COMIC!!!

If we hit the £6,500 level I'll send everyone who pledged over £30 an exclusive mini-comic collecting all my Tim True Stories strips, as featured in Comic Book Babylon. These will be re-lettered and digitally re-mastered for the 21st Century. This will be the only place you'll get this rare gem!

BOOK UPGRADES!!!!

Should we make the dizzy heights of £8,000 (ho ho!) we'll upgrade ALL the print editions to full colour versions featuring loads of photographs of famous comic creators and the Vertigo office from back in the day! This will add a whole new level to the paperback and hardcovers.

So tell your friends and family to start pledging now! Because the more money pledged, the better the product!

Risks and challenges

Having spent 20 years in publishing I have a solid and reliable reputation for delivering the goods (18+ books under my belt). This book is already written, it just needs a professional proof edit and laying out, and I have an excellent team on hand for that. The only delays would be from the printer.

Schedule:
I've put down that everything will be fulfilled by September 2013, but realistically you're likely to receive your goodies long before then.

Shipping:
All global shipping costs are covered in the pledge, so there's no hidden costs.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.52

    My undying gratitude and your name listed on my website's "Hall of Heroes"

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    Pledge £5 or more About $8

    My undying gratitude and your name listed on my website's "Hall of Heroes" PLUS: An exclusive "Sex, Drugs & Comic Books" badge!

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    Pledge £10 or more About $15

    A copy of the digital eBook. PLUS: your name in the back of the book.

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    Pledge £15 or more About $23

    A copy of the paperback edition. PLUS: your name in the back of the book and an exclusive "Sex, Drugs & Comic Books" badge.

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    Pledge £20 or more About $30

    NEW REWARD!
    A copy of the paperback edition. Your name in the back of the book and an exclusive "Sex, Drugs & Comic Books" badge. PLUS: Signed copies of my Spliffs 2 and Spliffs 3 books! The first is now out of print and together they have a RRP of £17.98/$27.57, so this is a real bargain!

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    Pledge £30 or more About $46

    A copy of the limited edition hardcover signed by me. Your name in the book and an exclusive "Sex, Drugs & Comic Books" badge.

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    Pledge £35 or more About $53

    A copy of the limited edition hardcover signed by me (there'll only ever be 200 of these produced). Your name in the book. PLUS: All 3 exclusive "Sex, Drugs & Comic Books" badges; And a signed limited edition print (200 max) by the book's designer, Rian Hughes.

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    Pledge £50 or more About $76

    All the above: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; a copy of the limited edition hardcover signed by me. A signed limited edition print by the book's designer, Rian Hughes. PLUS: An hour long conversation with me on the phone.

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    Pledge £50 or more About $76

    NEW PLEDGE PRICE! All the above: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; a copy of the limited edition hardcover signed by me. A signed limited edition print by the book's designer, Rian Hughes. PLUS: An invite to the launch party, either in London or Brighton (or possibly both).

    NOTE: This does NOT include the hour long conversation with me on the phone.

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    Pledge £150 or more About $229

    WORKSHOP PACK: Includes: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; the signed limited edition hardback; and the signed limited edition print. PLUS: An intensive one day course in Writing For Graphic Novels. Aimed at novice writers and intermediates wanting to improve their skills. Maybe you've already written books or screenplays and want to try your hand at comics? Or you may have written a comics script and want editorial feedback on improving it. I will explain the literary tips and tricks unique to graphic novels and help get your work to a publishable standard. The event will take place in either London or Brighton, whichever is the most convenient for the majority. See Updates for more details.

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    Pledge £200 or more About $305

    All the above: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; the signed limited edition hardback; and the signed limited edition print. PLUS: An hour long talk at a UK venue of your choosing about working for Vertigo UK (or any topic of your choosing) for your own specially selected audience. Plus, a signing. This is mostly a retailer-friendly reward, but is open to anyone who wants to organise such an event. (My travel expenses are included in this pledge.)

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    Pledge £300 or more About $457

    NEW PLEDGE PRICE! All the above: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; the signed limited edition hardback; and the signed limited edition print. PLUS: Dinner in a top restaurant with me anywhere in the UK. (The dinner for two and my travel expenses are included in this pledge.)

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    Pledge £500 or more About $762

    PERSONAL TUITION PACK: Includes: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; the signed limited edition hardback; and the signed limited edition print. PLUS: An exclusive, intensive, one-to-one scripting session. Aimed at the intermediate or established writer wanting to improve an existing script. It will involve me assessing your work, a one day brainstorming workshop session in person and three follow-up sessions by phone and email. All with the aim of getting your work to the highest publishable standard. The session will take place anywhere in the UK at a time that is most convenient for you. See Updates for more details.

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    Pledge £1,200 or more About $1,829

    NEW PLEDGE PRICE! All the above: The 3 badges; the eBook; the paperback with your name in; the signed limited edition hardback; and the signed limited edition print. Dinner in a top restaurant with me. PLUS: An hour long talk at a venue of your choosing about working for Vertigo UK (or any topic of your choosing) for your own specially selected audience. Plus, a signing. This is mostly a retailer-friendly reward, but is open to anyone who wants to organise such an event ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD! (This pledge includes my travel and dinner for two costs. Accommodation would be an agreed additional expense).

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Funding period

- (30 days)