Why are the quotes in planners always so boring? Why do I need to write my own emergency contact information in this flammable object? Why didn't anyone tell me that Mother's Day was next week? I had a lot of problems with most weekly day planners, and I decided to do something about it.
Last year, I designed a new pocket-sized weekly planner, somewhere between DIY and "legible," from the ground up. Fill-in resources and activities. Quick-look calendars and weekly pages with plenty of writing space. Random lined pages, grid pages, drawing pages, and compliments. Impending holiday warnings. I produced 40 at my old copy center job, and put the extra copies up for sale on my blog. They sold in days. I printed another 100. They disappeared. I printed another 100. Then I got tired.
This year I want to do it better. An outside printer, equipped to produce higher quality books. Better binding. Stronger, more durable covers. Nice, but not too nice. Both "DIY" & legible. Slightly bigger (5"x6"), but still small enough to actually use.
But it's not just about the construction. This planner is personal from cover to cover. Sure, it's got all the basics you need, like plenty of writing space, note pages, and measurement conversions. But it's also full of notes & quotes, handwritten month names and titles, unconventional resources (like the return of the "Zzah Brahs" pizza ranking system, or "Check-in Check Up," a sort of analog Foursquare), guest artist colouring pages, social media interaction with custom hashtags and more. It's a bit offbeat, a bit goofy, and plenty sarcastic. It's not perfect, because neither are you.
The planner will also feature colouring pages from these great illustrators: Alyssa Nassner, Amber Seegmiller ("Ambird"), Danny Brito, Dustin Maciag ("hundredeyes"), Emo Diaz, Jeremy Sorese, Jessica Sea ("The Disaster Life"), Nick Iluzada, and oh yeah some dumb jerk named Adam J. Kurtz.
Your donations can act as pre-orders, but it's more than that. You're helping me produce my largest independent project yet. Usually I have to earn enough from one thing I've produced to make the next, but this project requires a larger investment than balloon and postcard sales alone.
$1,600 is the minimum I need to do a short, digitally-printed run, and I'm not greedy, that would be great. But my real dream is a larger batch of offset printed books. That's going to cost over double, and also requires a larger minimum quantity, because that's how these things work. I'm saving up my money to make this happen, but exceeding my funding goal here would be a dream come true. Help me achieve my 2013 dreams! Believe in me, Kickstarter, I believe in you!
This year's version is still being designed, with lots of fun surprises, guest illustrations, and more! The updated size (5"x6") is a bit bigger than last year's version, but small enough to not be obnoxious. Take a quick look at just a few pages below:
Get the planner! The planner is going to be great, and I am so excited to share it with you! It comes with a Happy New Year 2013 postcard (a personal tradition now in it's 4th year!), an ADAMJK golf pencil (with eraser, thank god), a hand-stamped "intangible" index card to keep yourself moving and motivated, and maybe some other little surprises too! Treat yourself or someone else!
The additional rewards are a combination of items I have already produced, as well as a few new ones. I have been self-producing "super-serious prints and trinkets" for a few years, a small-scale operation where each project funds the next, and all the projects keep me from hating my "more traditional work-that-pays-bills, 9-5" job. Everything can be viewed online here.
Brand new for this kickstarter campaign are these charming and eloquent "thanks for nothing" balloons. The exact opposite of how I feel, these balloons may be exactly what you've wanted to say to someone else in your life. You'll get a package of 10 professionally-printed white balloons with bright red cursive writing to hit your message home.
This campaign is also the first chance to get in on SOMEDAY MY PRINTS WILL COME, my 2013 Mail Art Club! After a successful monthly postcard club in 2011, I've decided to evolve to mixed-media mailings, and an awesome welcome kit that will include a "SOMEDAY MY PRINTS WILL COME" logo t-shirt (American Apparel 2001 Tee & soft, water-based inks, let's be real), pins, and other goodies. Membership is limited, and if spots are left when this campaign is over they'll be a bit more expensive. Combined with the planner itself, this year-long subscription would make an excellent & unique holiday gift! Learn more here.
Risks and challenges
I learned a lot last year, from the design itself to the distribution. Over 50 of last year's users submitted surveys this year to help me identify points for improvement, and most said the same thing: "Don't change a thing... except my cover fell off so can you fix that?" I'm on it, I swear!
But there were things that bothered me personally. With handwritten lettering, you often see the same instance of a written word repeated. Last year I did three variants of each month, so you'd never see the same version on any given spread. This year I wrote each month out five times. I've got more number variants. The surprise pages are better drawn and better designed. I've pulled in some of my favorite illustrator friends to create original work for the colouring pages. This isn't a last-minute personal holiday gift idea this year, it's a (somewhat) solid project that's been in the works for months.
As for distribution, last year I was buying packing supplies at Target by the half-dozen. This year, I'm already on top of bulk ordering the stuff, and I have a home postage scale and stamp printer. I've got my shipping game down after a rigorous year of practice, I've got a P.O. box, and I've made friends with the USPS clerks. I am ready. Gimme those addresses, I got this.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (21 days)