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$4,534 pledged of $7,500 goal
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$4,534 pledged of $7,500 goal
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About this project

J. Thomas Derringer Jr.
J. Thomas Derringer Jr.

A boy growing up in 19th-century upstate New York finds out that his father was a professional adventurer, and determines to pursue the same trade -- but where to begin?  That's the beginning of the story for Tom Derringer, only son of the late Jack Derringer.

When I created Tom I set out to write a young adult steampunk adventure, but I got caught up in making it true to the period, and the result... well, it's not what I'd intended to write.

For one thing, I wrote it in the first person, with a narrator who is an educated (and slightly pompous) young New Yorker of the 1880s, so it's in the style of the 1880s, which most modern young readers won't find salubrious.

For another, I got caught up in my historical research, and while it's set in a world of lost cities, professional adventurers, secret societies, and so on, it's still a world very much like our own was in the 1880s, a world where Andrew Carnegie and Porfirio Diaz play the same roles they really did, and where science and technology generally (there are exceptions) don't diverge much from what was really possible at the time.  That's not exactly steampunk in the usual sense.

The style and the restraint made it impossible to sell to the major markets, but it is still a grand adventure story.  You can read the first chapter at http://www.watt-evans.com/tomderringer01.html

If we reach our target, I'll have the money to publish the novel, have it professionally edited by Deborah Hogan (who edited Vika's Avenger and several of my other novels), and commission a cover.  Bob Eggleton has agreed to do the cover art.

(There will also be a couple of interior illustrations by Kyrith Evans -- details from those appear above and below.)

Miss Elspeth Vanderhart
Miss Elspeth Vanderhart

Risks and challenges

What could possibly go wrong?

Well, there's always something, but in this case the novel is written, and I've done this before, so I don't foresee any major problems. I could get hit by a bus, my editor and cover artist might be kidnapped by aliens -- there's always something. Probably the most likely disaster is that either printing or shipping will turn out to cost more than I've planned on.

I'll do my best to produce a good-looking book, and get it delivered without excessive delays. I don't see a lot of ways it could go wrong, but I'm sure there are a few.

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    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    You'll get the backer updates and my gratitude.

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    You'll receive a holiday card from the author's collection -- either blank so you can use it yourself, or signed. We've been making our own cards most years since the 1980s -- some are topical or fannish (Red Sox World Series win, Babylon 5 reference), others are more generic -- and you can request any variety we have left, or take pot luck.

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    You'll receive a copy of the novel in e-book form, either ePub (for most e-readers) or .mobi (for the Kindle and some others).

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    You'll receive both the $4 and $5 rewards. The card should arrive in November, the e-book next year.

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    You'll receive a copy of the book in trade paperback.

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    You'll receive a copy of the book in trade paperback, and the e-book in either mobi or epub.

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    You'll receive a signed copy of the book in trade paperback, and the e-book, in either mobi or ePub.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    You'll receive a signed copy of the trade paperback of Tom Derringer and the Aluminum Airship, and you will also receive a signed copy of the trade paperback of Vika's Avenger, the book financed by my previous Kickstarter campaign.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    You'll receive a signed, limited-edition hardcover with dust jacket, and a copy of the e-book in either mobi or epub.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    You'll receive signed trade paperback copies of Tom Derringer and the Aluminum Airship, Vika's Avenger, and my essay collection, Mind Candy.

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    Pledge $95 or more About $95

    You'll receive a signed copy of the trade paperback, the e-book in either mobi or ePub, and a twenty-minute chat with the author on Skype or phone, discussing anything you like.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    You'll receive a copy of the book in trade paperback and e-book, and your name will be included on a "Patrons Page" at the back.

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    Pledge $240 or more About $240

    You'll receive a signed trade paperback of the novel, hand delivered when the author buys you a burger and beverage on a weekday night at your choice of the following establishments:
    The Quarry House, Silver Spring MD (dive bar);
    Fire Station 1, Silver Spring MD (sports bar);
    Union Jack, Bethesda MD (pub);
    The Olive Lounge, Takoma Park MD (small neighborhood bar). Transportation and additional guests are the backer's responsibility. All locations are within walking distance of a Metro station.

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    Pledge $450 or more About $450

    You'll receive a signed trade paperback copy of the book, hand delivered when the author buys you and a guest dinner at Mandalay, a Burmese restaurant in Silver Spring, MD. (If you're a vegetarian considering a dining option, this is the one to choose.)

    Transportation to the restaurant, and additional guests, are the backer's responsibility. It's walking distance from the Silver Spring Metro.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    You'll receive a signed hardcover copy of the book, hand delivered when the author buys you and a guest dinner at Chef Tony's Seafood in Bethesda, MD.

    Transportation and additional guests are the backer's responsibility. The restaurant is walking distance (several blocks) from the Bethesda Metro station.

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    You'll receive a copy of the book, of course, in any edition you like, but I will also send you the beginnings of at least a dozen unfinished stories, and YOU get to choose which one I'll write next. When finished, the chosen novel will be dedicated to you.

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Funding period

- (30 days)