About this project
What a Mess! A Pop-Up Misadventure
I am SO excited to officially present to you my second self-published pop-up book! It's a Children's Book that is a TON of fun and unlike any otherrrraaaaagggghhhh!!!...Sorry, I just stepped on a Lego.
Anyway, the book comes packed with amazing complex pop-ups that are great for all ages, and a hilarious story that is perfect for young kids 3-8.
It's no secret that most children do not like to pick-up after themselves and my kids are no exception. This book sets out to promote personal responsibility by answering the question: "What would happen if we just didn't clean-up?"
The misadventure unfolds when two siblings let their messy room become so out-of-control that it explodes from their doorway, sends them to the top of a toy mountain, spins them around in a dust-tornado, and much more.
I have always been enamored by pop-up books because of their unique ability to interact with the reader and make them an active participant in the story. This subject lent itself so well to the medium because the mess could literally rise and fall from the pages.
Nearly two years ago I set out on this exciting journey to write, illustrate, and paper-engineer this book. To find the time, I began waking up early at 5am and dedicating at least one hour everyday to the project.
To share in the experience, I documented every step of the process on social media. With each new post I've received support from people all over the world who have shared their suggestions and constructive feedback. All the encouragement has motivated me to not only complete the project, but to pour everything I had into this book and create something really unique and lasting.
I've been working as a Greeting Card Artist and Senior Product Designer for over a decade. It's a fantastic job that is very creative, rewarding, and a joy to go to everyday. Being a creative professional though does mean that you are always working for the client and as a result your work can sometimes feel like an extension of someone else's vision. That is what inspired me to begin this journey.
My biggest inspiration though, by far, is my family. They inspired me to write this story in the first place and dive head first into this massive undertaking. My wife and children are everything to meeeeaaaghhhhh!!...Seriously?!? That's like the fifth Lego I've stepped on.
Pop-up books require a specialized manufacturer that is both skilled and dedicated to producing movable books. I had to learn this lesson the hard way after the first edition of my first self-published book, 'A Day in Rehoboth Beach' was constructed poorly. For the second printing of that book, an industry professional referred me to an outstanding manufacturer that produces Pop-up books for many large publishing houses.
Their quality of product is outstanding and they have already quoted this book and agreed to be the manufacturer of 'What a Mess' when we successfully fund.
Why a physical book over digital?
Digital is great, don't get me wrong! But there is also something so magical about the tangible. When the reader is not separated by a plate of glass they can actually play an active role in the action, and experience real dimension without computer special effects. I look at screens all day long but 'before-bed-story-time' with my kids is a time where we can unplug and bond over a great book.
Manufacturing, Shipping, and Fees. That's it! I've covered everything else up until this point and will continue to take care of marketing and promotions entirely myself. I just really need your help to get us over the hurdle of our production costs.
- I have received overwhelming online support since this project's inception, so I wanted to make this book available to this community first.
- All the reward extra's will only be available through KickStarter.
- Finding a publisher that invests in complex pop-up books is difficult. These books have a high production cost and take up more shelf-space in book stores.
- Self-publishing gives me the opportunity to really connect with my audience and the freedom to be as creative as possible.
Do you love this project and would you like to see it succeed? GREAT...ME TOO! Funding will play a big part in this books success but we can't get there unless everyone knows about it. This is where I desperately need your help! Tweet, Facebook, blog, email, Instagram, and scream it from the rooftop. Every little bit helps!
A very special THANK YOU to: my amazing and supportive wife, Kristen; my hilariously fun children, Maggie & Charlie; my amazing copy editors Jill Jankowski and Rick Reising; and to everyone who has followed along and given so much support. I Love you all!
Risks and challenges
Fortunately I have learned a great deal from my first self-published pop-up book, 'A Day in Rehoboth Beach.' I now have an outstanding manufacturer that is proven and trusted, a logistics company that handles import and shipping, and I have a great deal of experience with fulfillment of orders.
There are many advantages to self-publishing but with it can carry some challenges. Funding is the largest challenge because of the high production costs associated with Pop-Up Books, but with your help we can easily overcome that hurdle with this Kickstarter campaign.
This first edition run will be anywhere from 1,000 - 3,500 books depending on how well we fund. Because these are modestly sized print runs for our manufacturer, our book will most likely not be their highest priority and may take longer to produce. My last book took roughly 4 months to manufacture with 2-4 weeks added for shipping and distribution. The manufacturer promised a similar production span for 'What a Mess.' I promise to take you on this journey with me and will keep you updated throughout the whole process via Kickstarter and social media.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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