Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
Set in a world where Baum's novels were very close to true, Polychrome takes their spirit... and lets it grow up, just a little.
243 backers pledged $7,853 to help bring this project to life.

About

Polychrome, an Oz-based novel project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

$7,853

243

Polychrome

 ***Yes, the video is long; it tells the story of this project in some detail. Read this section if you read faster than you watch stuff. ***

I'm Ryk E. Spoor, author of 8 published novels including Golden-Age tribute space opera Grand Central Arena, epic fantasy Phoenix Rising, and the Boundary series with Eric Flint, and with multiple other novels currently under contract 

Welcome to my Kickstarter for my Oz-based novel Polychrome

The original fourteen Oz novels by L. Frank Baum (that's a Gutenberg link) are one of my oldest and most enduring inspirations. They were my favorite books for many years, and even now that I am an adult I read them with great appreciation.  I have read them all to each of my kids in turn, letting them share in my joy at the wonder, adventure, whimsy, and sometimes not a little creepiness in the world of Oz, as we travel along with Dorothy, the Wizard, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion, and others -- including, of course, Polychrome, the Daughter of the Rainbow.

Polychrome is my addition, and a very personal addition, to the Oz universe. Inspired by an incredible rainbow I saw while driving home one day (a picture of which is the background for the project image), Polychrome finally burst into my consciousness clearly outlined in my head, all the major events detailed – and proceeded to quite literally take my other, under-contract work hostage. As in, I found that if I didn't write at least a chapter or two in Polychrome per week, I could not write anything else at all.

The resulting story was far, far better than I had expected, or even hoped, it could be. My beta-readers, many of whom had started out extremely doubtful, had become enthusiastic, quite a few of them maintaining to this day that Polychrome is the best thing I have ever written. Other people – deeply versed in Oziana – have also expressed very favorable opinions, some of them almost embarrassingly enthusiastic. A few quotes which I have been given permission to post:

"A wonderful story that brings the Oz mythos up to date without subverting or destroying it; the author's love for Baum's creation is clear on every page. It touched and thrilled me." -- Lawrence Watt-Evans

"In Polychrome, author Ryk Spoor combines the wonder of the original Oz series with a fast paced action adventure tale and a compelling romance... Make no mistake: this is not your childhood Oz. It's bloody, it's sexy (if still safe for work), it's dangerous -- and the threat of death is very real. And if the Oz books were about childhood, this is very much a book about adulthood, mistakes, and redemption. But it also contains the best part of that childhood Oz -- adventure and humor, which means that even in its most serious moments, it's still incredibly fun." -- Mari Ness

“Much as L. Frank Baum reinvented the fairy tale at the dawn of the 20th century, Ryk Spoor’s Polychrome revitalizes Baum’s Oz for 21st century audiences. At once a deeply knowledgeable tribute and a lively modern adventure, Polychrome is a wholly enjoyable read – and just possibly a future classic in its own right.” -- John C. Bunnell

But Polychrome is also a very difficult book to sell to a publisher; multiple publishers looked at it, several spent considerable time thinking about it… but none quite took it. It's not a standard Oz book; it's meant for a general adult audience, not children. It's not a deconstruction, like Maguire's Wicked, or a parody. It's not, except in a very minimal sense, an updating or reimagining, like SciFi's Tin Man.

Polychrome is, simply put, an adventure in Oz – an Oz as close as I could make it to Baum's while still making it… work, so to speak – for myself and others who have grown up but still look back and wonder what's on the other side of the rainbow, across a desert that doesn't exist.

I think that adventure's worth publishing. I hope you'll agree. 

Now, you may ask "if you've already written the book, why do you need money?" Well, it's true that the book is written, but it hasn't had a professional editor go over it; and I've learned in the last ten years that a good editor makes a good book better, and enough better that I really don't want to release something without an editor's input. 

Second, I really want a professional cover for Polychrome, and professional covers cost a lot of money. 

And I need layout, proofreading, all the other details that make a book a professional product that can stand proudly next to books from any publishing house. If I'm going to do this, I want it done right.

Additional stretch goals are listed below, and if by some chance we blow by those, I'll think of other cool stuff to add.

And what do you get for this? Well, besides the satisfaction of helping a little dream get realized, as long as you kick in five bucks or more you'll get a copy of the book – in different formats, depending on just what level you back at – and other perks at higher levels ranging from a personalized signature to inclusion on a Thank-You page in the book, a Tuckerization opportunity, and others. Go check out the full list! 

Thanks so much for spending the time to learn about Polychrome

STRETCH GOALS:

$7,000: A cover from the legendary Bob Eggleton. The base funding level will still get me a good cover, but at this level I'll be able to afford a cover from one of the finest cover artists alive today, and he's already agreed to do it if I can meet the price!

$9,000: Map and three interior illustrations. The classic map of Oz and Environs has been around for a long time, but it would be nice to have one specific to Polychrome, and Randy Asplund (who did the map for my novel Phoenix Rising) is my current choice to do this. Interior illustrations, starting with a character lineup sketch, will be done by Morineko-Zion who also did the lovely manga-style illustrations for my Grand Central Arena universe.

$12,000: Several more interior illos will be provided by Morineko-Zion. Ideally, depending on cost, I'd like to have one for every major event in the book.

If we get past this... well, I'll find something appropriate!

Risks and challenges

The major risks associated with this project are time/schedule risks. To take a book from "Word file on my computer" to "Fully edited, proofed, illustrated, covered book in readers' hands" takes a lot of work by a lot of people, and each task takes time. A slip in any one person's schedule can naturally lead to delays all the way down the line (possibly longer than one might think, if -- for example -- one person had planned on doing their part during a two-week "window" they had open, and the delay went past that window, meaning their part of the project now is competing with other obligations).

I have chosen a somewhat aggressive schedule in envisioning release eight months after funding; I have found that I focus best with some pressure (but not too much!) on me for any given project. Even with several delays, however, I would not expect release to be any later than one year after funding.

I have done my best to minimize the risks associated with particular tasks; I have alternative persons in mind to handle any of the key tasks if any of my selected people for any reason finds themselves unable to perform their part when the Kickstarter funds. As a published author with over ten years' experience in the field, I've been fortunate enough to have contact with multiple excellent cover artists, illustrators, editors, proofreaders, and other professionals in the field.

I have also already investigated pricing and timing involved in fulfilling any of the stretch goals, so that if I am fortunate enough to reach them those, also, are well covered.

I am therefore confident that if and when the Kickstarter funds, the project will be completed in a reasonably timely and effective manner.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1.00

    Just Helping: For a single dollar, you get both the satisfaction of helping in realizing this dream, and a subscription (if you want it) to a newsletter which I will begin in celebration of funding the Kickstarter; I'm tentatively titling it Paradigms Regained and it will come out a minimum of once per month (more frequently if I get a bunch of awesome news I can't wait to share).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    5 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    Reader of Oz: At this level, you get a copy of the ebook of Polychrome (available in an assortment of ebook formats). In addition, you can choose to receive Paradigms Regained.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    106 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 15 or more About US$ 15

    Devoted Reader of Oz: The rewards under the $5 Reader of Oz level, plus a high-resolution electronic wallpaper image from the cover painting! This wallpaper will be exclusive to backers of the Kickstarter and only for those at this level and up!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    26 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    Student of Oz: A handsome trade paperback of Polychrome is the primary reward at this level. Along with that comes the ebook in whatever format you prefer, plus an optional subscription to Paradigms Regained.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    27 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 30 or more About US$ 30

    Honor Student: This pledge level gets your copy of Polychrome's trade paperback signed by the author, with a personalized inscription if you so desire. Naturally, you also get the ebook and the option to pick up a subscription to Paradigms Regained.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    19 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 35 or more About US$ 35

    Patron Reader of Oz: A requested addition, this gives you the Devoted Reader of Oz (eBook, subscription, and limited-edition wallpaper) plus your name inscribed on the Patron's Page on the back, with a comment of up to 15 words of your choice!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 40 or more About US$ 40

    Researcher of Oz: For forty dollars your copy of Polychrome is a limited-edition hardcover, signed by the author and with a personalized inscription if you desire; this version of the hardcover does not include a dustjacket or cover art, but does of course include an ebook of Polychrome and optional subscription to Paradigms Regained.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    14 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 45 or more About US$ 45

    Head Researcher of Oz: Everything at the $40 Researcher level, but with the addition of a print – either of the cover painting,or of one of the interior illustrations if that stretch goal is met.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 11 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Visitor to Oz: You get everything at the $30 Honor Student level – the signed trade paperback, ebook,and subscription to Paradigms Regained – and in addition, you will have your name and your choice of a comment of up to 15 words on a Patron's Page at the back of the book.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 6 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 60 or more About US$ 60

    Citizen of Oz: Everything at the Researcher of Oz level – the limited-edition hardcover, signed and inscribed, ebook, and newsletter – plus you will have your name, and choice of a comment of up to 15 words long, on a Patron's Page at the back of the book.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    Noted Citizen of Oz: At this level you get BOTH the trade paperback and limited-edition hardcover cloth-bound edition of Polychrome, both signed by the author, plus of course the ebook version and newsletter.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  12. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 85 or more About US$ 85

    On the Yellow Brick Road: A supporter at this level will receive a limited-edition hardcover of Polychrome with a handsome dust jacket featuring the cover painting. Naturally, this also includes the ebook version and the newsletter.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 9 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  13. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Librarian of Oz: This level includes everything at the Head Researcher level, but in addition to the inscribed limited-edition hardcover of Polychrome, the limited-edition print, the ebook, and the newsletter, supporters will receive a signed copy of their choice of one of my other available books.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  14. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 125 or more About US$ 125

    Resident of the Emerald City: A signed and inscribed limited-edition hardcover of Polychrome is yours, along with the ebook, the limited-edition artworkprint, the newsletter subscription – and a high-quality T-shirt printed with the cover image!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  15. Reward no longer available

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    Hero of Oz: At this impressive level, you will receive a signed Trade Paperback of Polychrome, with the ebook and newsletter… and you will be a named character in one of my forthcoming books. A choice of books, and character types/roles, will be provided when the Kickstarter funds but everything from passer-by to helpful stranger to "redshirt killed spectacularly" will be available!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 5 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  16. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Royalty of Oz: At this level, you will be handed your signed, personalized dust-jacketed hardcover copy of Polychrome by yours truly, in person, at a dinner with me and my wife at any reasonably priced restaurant in the Capital District of New York (Albany-Schenectady-Troy). Getting to the Capital District area is your responsibility, but I'll drive out and pick you up at Albany Airport, bus station, or train station, and return you for your departure or to your hotel, if you're staying in the region. Additionally, you can choose either the limited-edition print, or the T-shirt, to take home, and you will naturally also receive the e-book and newsletter!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  17. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Over the Rainbow: At this level (or above), you will receive the rewards for Royalty of Oz. In addition, you will first receive a photograph of my totally gobsmacked face, and other rewards will be personally negotiated in keeping with your contribution (for instance, a Tuckerization who is a recurring character in one of my books or series).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)