Music - "A Lullaby for Mr. Bear" by The Doubleclicks
Artwork and animation - the Midnight's Masque team
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UPDATE! - New Stretch Goal Added - check it out on the Updates page.
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MIDNIGHT’S MASQUE: a tale of dreams, disguises, and dolls. Follow the adventures of Maquette as he protects his ward from the terrible truths in the dark. Danger lurks in every shadow, and friends are few and far, but his fate is forever entwined with his charge, and he will see it through.
Maquette is a toy bear who comes alive at night to guard Anna, the human child he has been charged to protect. Protect from what, you ask? The WRAITHS, horrible creatures of innumerable variety that appear after midnight and attack with clicking claws and gnashing fangs.
Mac is not alone in this duty, but just because the other Guardians also fight the Wraiths does not mean they are all his friends. The dangers come from every side as he battles to save Anna’s soul.
Midnight's Masque is a fantasy story appropriate for ages 8+, with just a bit of scariness in the form of monsters that stalk the night.
The first five issues of Midnight’s Masque are complete and collected together into a single volume that makes it easy to own and read. We've decided to publish with Amazon’s CreateSpace service, a print-on-demand option that allows small, independent creators, to defer all printing costs until each copy of the book is sold. In other words, we don’t pay upfront for each book, instead the cost is deducted from the sale price.
So why Kickstarter? One piece of advice that came up from everyone who uses CreateSpace was to optimize your “splash” on Amazon when releasing your book. You only get one shot at being a New Release, and if you can generate enough sales to make a blip on one of the best seller lists, it's like lighting the fuse on a bundle of dynamite, potentially blowing up your sales sky-high!
So the goal of this Kickstarter campaign is to collect as many advance orders as possible, then place the purchases all at once, building the momentum and aiming for those best seller lists. It's a big task, and that’s where you come in. Each book-level pledge here represents a sale on Amazon, and each sale pushes Midnight's Masque up the listings. That's also why there are no digital copies as part of this Kickstarter. We'll make those for the next time around.
There should also be a small profit on each sale, which will go to producing Midnight’s Masque, Volume 2. The sequel book will contain issues 6-10 and conclude the story of Maquette and Anna in the world of stalwart Guardians and soul-sucking Wraiths!
Thank you for helping make this story of dreams, disguises, and dolls come true!
There are some great advantages to using Amazon’s CreateSpace for printing that we will use for this Kickstarter: High quality printing - I have the proof copy and it’s excellent! Free shipping - as a Prime member, we can ship free to to you in the US. Fast shipping - Prime is 2-day delivery! No additional costs - whatever profit is made can go direct to production of the next volume.
MIDNIGHT'S MASQUE, VOLUME 1, collects the first five issues of the comic into a gorgeous book that's 140 pages long with a premium glossy softcover.
If you are outside the US and wish to pledge and receive a copy of Midnight’s Masque, Volume 1, there will be additional shipping costs as Prime doesn't work. The rate to your country will be added at the conclusion of the campaign. Thank you for supporting us from distant lands!
Funds Allocation (estimated)
Printing & Shipping- 67%
Fulfillment - 10%
Vol. 2 Production: 13%
KS Fees - 10%
Our campaign has simple pledge levels as we are totally focused on getting those sales numbers on Amazon and making this a successful launch. Each level of $30 or more includes a copy of MIDNIGHT'S MASQUE, VOLUME 1, collecting the first five issues of the comic into a gorgeous book that's 140 pages long with a premium glossy softcover.
Should the campaign really take off, we have much grander plans for the launch of Midnight’s Masque, Volume 2, including lots of additional artwork (backmatter), swag items, and bonus content! There are some cool pledge levels that will get you into that backmatter for Volume 2:
SEER Level - your own Selfstone
At this pledge level you get a copy of Midnight's Masque, Volume 1, and you also get your name into the credits pages of Volume 2 with your very own Selfstone. The mystical gems that harness vitality and allow Seers to exist in our world. You can submit your own design or we'll make one for you.
GUARDIAN Level - your own Otherstone
At this pledge level you get a copy of Midnight's Masque, Volume 1, and you also get your name into the credits pages of Volume 2 with your very own Otherstone. The magical gems that bond a Guardian to a human Ward, allowing them to feel their thoughts and sense the imminent danger of the Wraiths so they can jump into action and fulfill their duty to protect. You can submit your own design or we'll make one for you.
WRAITH Level - your own Signaculum
So you're a fan of the bad guys, eh? At this pledge level you get a copy of Midnight's Masque, Volume 1, and you also get your name into the credits pages of Volume 2 with your very own Signaculum. These rough-hewn sigils and talismans focus energy and allow the Wraiths to spew forth into our reality, intent on harvesting the vital essences of humans. You can submit your own design or we'll make one for you.
ELDER Level - the triad of leadership (limit 3)
Wow, you really mean business! Your generous support will be used to fund convention appearances and marketing for Midnight's Masque. At this pledge level you get a copy of Midnight's Masque, Volume 1, but first it will ship to us to be signed by the author, then mailed to you. You also get your name into the credits pages of Volume 2 as one of the three Elders, the most experienced and respected Seers in existence. Choose from wise Nonaxius, mysterious Decimarum, or powerful Mortae. Choices will be made on a first pledge, first choice basis, so make sure you pledge early to get the one you want!
A huge Thank You is due to everyone who helped create this book, whether it was the friends who encouraged us, the designers and writers who advised us, or the family that helped us stay up so many late nights to finish that one last detail. This book would not be possible without each and every one of you!
Dan Siger - story, scripts, letters, production. He lives in Portland, OR, USA, with his wife, kids, and cats.
Darren Cools - art and colors. Darren is an illustrator and designer who believes in making things that are good for people. He loves real books, and tends to obsess over graphic novels and comics. Sometimes he works on old cars and motorcycles to chill out. You can find more of his work at darrencools.com.
Milan Andjelkovic - art, character design, more art, and even more art. Milanlives in Belgrade, Serbia with his wife, Milena. He’s a professional artist, very active in the international comic book world as a penciller, inker, and colorist. His credits include: Arcadian Knights, Gladiator series, The Rise of Red Moon series, Temporal Law, Unrequited Homicide, Action Dudes, and Get A Life. One of Milan’s goal is to write a screenplay and draw a comic book based upon the folk tale Baš Čelik (Man of Steel), which he is convinced influenced Tolkien when he wrote The Lord of the Rings novels. You can find more of his excellent work on his blog.
Edwin Domingo - colors, so many colors, Edwin is a freelance artist who does pencil work, a little inking, but mostly color on comics commissions. You can see more of his fantastic work at deviantart.com.
If you're new to Kickstarter, here is some info about how about how it all works.
Risks and challenges
There are virtually no risks to this campaign - we already took all the risk getting Midnight’s Masque, Volume 1 made! The book files have been approved by CreateSpace and are ready to print shortly after the campaign ends. Shipping through Amazon is extremely reliable, not to mention fast. Upon the successful conclusion of this campaign, we will be focusing on getting Volume 2 wrapped up so all our fans can read the conclusion to the story of Maquette and Anna.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)