About this project
Hi everybody! Thank you so much for visiting this project. I’m grateful for your time and support. Your funding of this kickstarter enables me, a lowly independent author, to self-publish my debut modern fantasy series full of adventure, magic, and snarky humor. This will create a foundation for a long and successful writing career that produces amazing fiction for you and a living for my family.
Who Am I?
Lydia Sherrer: writer, reader, wife, cat-mom, musician, artist, archer, cosplayer, nature lover, and not-cook. I was born and raised in the Kentucky countryside, fished tadpoles and snakes out of the creek when I was a kid, and traveled the world from China to Syria during college. Since then I’ve settled down in Louisville, KY to write, live, and love. I believe that every man, woman, and child should have access to good fiction, to learn and grow from it. Therefore, I aim to bring stories into this world that help create positive change.
I love to give back to my community, my country, and my world. That is why, after I'm published, 10% of my book sales profit (NOT kickstarter money, no money pledged here goes to charity) will be going to a local aid organization. I’m currently deciding between St. Joseph’s Children’s Home and the Orphan Care Alliance. I love kids!
Why Should You Care About Stories?
“Stories are as hard to create as they are inevitable; good ones are as elusive as they are necessary to hungry souls” – N.D. Wilson
Stories are important. They help us learn, grow, and cope (I am such a netflix addict, you have no idea). I write stories to help people better understand themselves and the world around them, so we can become better people, and can act to make the world a better place.
What is Love, Lies, and Hocus Pocus?
Click here to read the rest of Chapter 1!
Love, Lies, and Hocus Pocus - the Lily Singer Adventures is a witty, fun-filled series about a bookish and awkward wizard, Lily Singer, her troublemaking witch friend, Sebastian Blackwell, and her talking cat, Sir Edgar Allen Kipling. They must work together to save the world from magical mayhem (some of it caused by Sebastian, shame on him) while Lily searches for clues about her hidden past. Will discovering who she is and where she came from reveal her future? Or doom it? We’ll never know unless we get this kickstarter funded!
Full of life lessons about forgiveness, trust, friendship, and the responsible use of power, the books’ snarky humor will keep you laughing while the original magic system and world building will keep fantasy lovers enthralled. Inspired by ancient Sumerian lore, language, and cuneiform script, I’ve created my own unique reality that you can dive into: bizarre enough to keep you on your toes while real enough to make you wonder if it just might be true.
Where did this story come from? Well, I love magic (can we say, Harry Potter?), tea (I use too much sugar), cats (adorable), libraries (heaven!), adventure (in real life too), history/myth/lore (wish I could time travel) and questions with no easy answers. These books grew out my love for all these things, and wanting to share them with other people so they could enjoy them too.
This kickstarter is specifically funding the publishing costs of Book 1: Beginnings and Book 2: Revelations of this series, both being published simultaneously. Books 3 and 4 will follow in late 2016 or early 2017 (hopefully funded by my own publishing profit), and I have many more plotted out if fans want to see the series continue! See my website lydiasherrer.com/my-writing for a complete rundown of my publications
Why should you back this project?
You know the author: I love my family and friends SO much, I never could have done any of this without you. Thank you for continuing to help me realize my dreams and make the world a better place!
You love to read: This series is a riot of fun laughs, exciting adventure, and life lessons that make you think. With several short stories and essays already published, and no effort or expense spared to make these books as amazing as they can be, I can assure you of their quality. If you’re not convinced, click here to read the first chapter free.
You love fantasy, magic, snarky humor, tea, libraries, books, ancient history/myth and cats: This series has tons of all that, with some fae, Arthurian lore, and time travel thrown in just for good measure.
You love supporting dreams via Kickstarter: So do I! I’ve supported multiple kickstarters myself and love seeing what amazing innovations people come up with.
You support the arts: I’m not only an indie author, but also an artist and musician. The success of my writing career allows me to pursue my musical and artistic creativity as well, bringing even more beauty into the world (I have a youtube channel and art website).
You enjoy fighting the system: Help me show the world that anyone in today’s society with enough drive and gumption can create books as good as, even BETTER than the mega publishers who like to tell us what is, and is not, good enough for print (and are often wrong).
You wish there were more strong females in fantasy: You’ve got a strong woman writing about a strong woman. While Lily is an introvert and socially awkward, her inner strength enables her to grow and develop in character and wisdom, solving problems and doing her duty while remaining compassionate and guided by a moral compass. She serves as a positive role model while going through her own realistic struggles.
You want clean fantasy: While I don’t ignore the realities of life (people really do cuss, kill, and go through horrors), I present these things in a way that gives the story impact and meaning without cluttering the book with unprofitable sensationalism, gore, or intimate details. You can safely gift these books to your teenager, your mom, or even your grandma.
You want the real thing: While I keep my writing appropriate, it is by no means easy or fluff-filled. To learn and grow, we have to face the hard things in life and overcome them, and that is just what Lily and her friends do.
You’re from Shelbyville, Louisville, or just KY in general: I’m a local author. This is the right project for you if you want to support someone local, creating unique art by their own sweat and tears. I can’t do it without you!
Still not feeling it? That’s okay. I really appreciate you giving this project a look. Even if you don’t want to or can’t support it, could you please share it with friends and encourage others to support it? In the meantime, you can follow me on social media and sign up for my newsletter to get updates and giveaways. I love involving my readers in my writing, and do frequent world-building surveys and other interactive content.
The Rewards (Yay Loot!)
Some notes on the rewards: you will get a survey at the end of the project (if it is successful). This is where you’ll provide your address, email, and any other details about your reward preferences. Make sure you fill out this survey and contact me if you don’t receive it.
$5 [Basic] Cool jpg files of the cover art to set as your computer desktop background, plus more jpg files of printable bookmarks you can print out as many times as you want!
$15 [E-Book] The ebook files I can send in kindle or e-pub format (or, if absolutely needed, PDF, but it may take longer). They will be shared using download links via email, so MAKE SURE you provide a working email address in the survey.
$20 [Early Bird Book 1] tier: people get the EXACT SAME REWARDS as tier $25, but at a discount, to thank them for supporting me right off the bat!
$25 [Book 1] tier: I will sign and personalize everything, so if you want anything besides your name and a brief note, let me know in the survey.
$40 [Early Bird Books 1 + 2] tier: people get the EXACT SAME REWARDS as tier $50, but at a discount, to thank them for supporting me right off the bat!
$50 [Book 1 + 2] tier: I will sign and personalize everything, so if you want anything besides your name and a brief note, let me know in the survey.
$75 [Art Lover] tier: regarding the chapter illustration art print: each book has a total of 9 illustrations. I’ll be making prints of groupings of these illustrations that you can choose from. Illustrations are being drawn now, so examples to choose from will be added as they are finished. You'll get to see details of each and pick which one you want by the end of the campaign via the survey.
Choices for illustrations art prints:
Personalized Dimmu rune-stamped Tablet: This item goes with the $150, $250, $500, and $1000 tiers. It is made out of natural clay, hand shaped and stamped by me, and dried in the sun. As a linguist by training (I double majored in Chinese and Arabic in college), I’ve always been fascinated by languages and have long wanted to create my own. Words of power (Enkinim) and runes of power (dimmu) are based off of various ancient Sumerian dialects and cuneiform scripts. I’ll provide a printout of the translation along with the tablet. You will provide me the personalized message for the tablet, with a limit of 140 characters (same as a tweet). I’ll send you all rewards except the clay tablet asap, but the tablet may take longer due to weather: it has to be hot and dry enough to sufficiently dry. I’ll keep you updated.
$150 [The Awesome Backer Package]
$250 [The Awesom-ER Backer Package] tier: you will let me know via survey what name/spelling to thank in the acknowledgements. For the sealed thank you letter, I'll include instructions on how to remove the seal without breaking it in case you want to keep it!
$500 [The Awesom-EST Backer Package]
Minor Character write in ($500 level) and Personalized short story + portrait ($1000 level): For both of these, expect me to contact you personally by the beginning of May. First priority is to get Books 1 and 2 published, then after the launch April 30th I’ll be refocusing on finishing Books 3 and 4, so I’ll work with you on your character at that time. For the personalized short story, I will do my best to get it done by the end of June and will be sending it to you in PDF format. For the personalized portrait, you’ll be working with myself and my cover artist Tony Warne. I’ll send you further details when the time comes.
$1000 [GOD LEVEL]
The Plan (w/a capital P): process and budget
I'm an entrepreneur and a sponge, so I’ve loved the process of self-publishing where I find all the answers I need and learn things for myself. That said, I know I can only self-teach so much, so I’ve hired the most professional cover artist, editor, and formatter I could find. My goal is to create a product so good it’s indistinguishable from a traditionally published book. With both books already written and currently in the editing process, here’s a timeline of how the rest of the project will go down.
I have all this and much more behind the scenes going on to make these books land with a splash and a bang. The only thing I’m missing is…you got it…money. That’s where you come in. I’ve run the race up to this point, but to cross the finish line, I need your help. I can’t do it without you.
$2750 = Minimum goal: here’s a breakdown of the BARE MINIMUM publishing costs needed to put books in hand
**Note for those who care for math-y details. If not, skip this** 2750 doesn’t even meet my bare minimum goal, as kickstarter takes 5% -137, postage and shipping supplies -325, and printing for art -75 = $2213.00 is what I actually get (if there are no unexpected expenses or hike in shipping costs). However, I am still saving up my own money to offset costs, so if we meet the 2750 goal I will be able to fulfill everybody’s reward tier, just not do any advertising/book tour/launch party stuff or any of the stretch goal add-ons. So lets try and meet those stretch goals, shall we? **Annoying math stuff over, math-o-phobes may now rejoin the group**
$3460 = Stretch Goal #1: these are things that are GREATLY needed to make the books do well, but not bare minimum to put books in hand.
$5260 = Stretch Goal #2: these are add-ons that I would LOVE to be able to do for you all, but can only afford investing in if we meet this funding level.
First add-on: The hardback copies would be limited edition (100-200 numbered hardbacks for each book, depending on how many supporters we have). If we meet this goal, people will have the option of “opting in” for a hardback instead of a paperback on the $25 tier and up for an additional $10 per book.
Second add-on: The coin I mention would be a replica of an enchanted coin of Sebastian’s that he uses to see if people are telling the truth. The art for both sides is designed by me, including the dimmu runes. If we meet this goal I can have a run of 100 (possibly more) numbered coins minted just for my amazing supporters. This awesome perk could be added onto the $50 tier and up for an additional 20$.
Note: I am making NO profit on these stretch goals. If we do these additions, what you are adding is the production cost so that I don’t lose money making additions, thus sabotaging the original project.
Now, you may be wondering why my base goal is only $2750 and not $5000+? That’s because Kickstarter is an all-or-none funding program. If I don’t meet my initial goal, I get zip. Therefore, in the interest of putting books in your hands, I have opted to meet the bare minimum costs I think I have the ability to raise so that you all can get your stuff and not be disappointed by a failed Kickstarter (that would stink).
However, if you all help me promote the heck out of this thing (I can’t do it on my own, I don’t know enough people), we can blow this thing out of the water, meet our stretch goals and make this book launch really go wild. Together, I know we can do this, so please, please take the time to share the news. If you pledge money, tell everybody that you did. If you can’t/don’t want to pledge, you can still help by sharing this and telling everyone about it. Thank you!
For International Backers
First off, you guys are amazing! Thanks for wanting to support this project. The first two tiers require no shipping, so click away on those with abandon. For all other tiers I’d be happy to ship internationally, but unfortunately because of ridiculously spiking shipping costs you will have to add an additional $20-$40 based on your country. I’m very sorry this is the case, I know it's terribly inconvenient, and I appreciate your patience and understanding. Please contact me directly to work out international shipping, as I have disabled that option on the applicable tiers to prevent unintended misunderstandings.
Risks and challenges
There is very little risk, but plenty of challenge to get everything done. If the project gets funded, everything is already in line to print and distribute the books (books written, art drawn, etc). The only risk is potential setbacks in the timetable if unexpected errors are found, printing approval is delayed, stuff like that. Barring my sudden and untimely death, however, nothing should push the project back more than several weeks. Come hell or high water, these books WILL get published if you help me fund this project!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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