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A limited-edition experiential art book inspired by H. P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos and printed in letterpress.
151 backers pledged $29,211 to help bring this project to life.
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$29,211

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 The Miskatonic Papers

In 1907 an expedition to the wild steppes of Siberia makes an astounding discovery before going terribly awry. Gathering proof of the discovery and their troubles, a lone explorer travels back to civilization seeking help. But the Old Ones are persistent and their influence spans far and wide. Madness and death follow. These papers, telling the tale, have been hidden for decades and are only now coming to light, exposing us to darkest recesses of the night.

This book was inspired by the cosmic horror of H. P. Lovecraft and set in the mythos he created. It is about an expedition led by Professor Tyler Freeborn from the fabled Miskatonic University to the Tunguska region of Siberia. The stout party, far from civilization and under great duress begins to suffer from madness, confusion, and violence. It begins eating away at the crew and in order to bring their discovery to light must seek help. Can they maintain their sanity and their very lives until help comes? Will help even arrive in time?

The clothbound clamshell box
The clothbound clamshell box

A Book Like No Other

The Miskatonic Papers is an experiential book limited to 200 signed and numbered copies. You don’t just open the book and read it, you explore and experience the mystery, assembling it from numerous artifacts that have been hidden from view for decades. It’s like breaking open a time capsule and trying to figure out what happened to this expedition over one hundred years ago. Composed of 50 printed pieces, including letters, telegrams, drawings, newspaper clippings, a broadside, burned tatters of found stationery, and a journal that was written by hand and printed by letterpress. All of these – letterpress printed, hand stamped, aged and weathered – comprise this Stygian work of unnameable horrors. 

In addition, you'll receive a cast resin fragment of the artifact that plays an important part in the story. For Kickstarter backers only, you'll also receive a special personalized letter to you from one of Lovecraft's nefarious characters explaining how this secretive tome has found its way to you. 

Three sealed folders are filled with letters, drawings, newspaper clippings and other ephemera which lead you on the story.
Three sealed folders are filled with letters, drawings, newspaper clippings and other ephemera which lead you on the story.

The story, in three acts, is sealed within three custom designed and printed folders from the dusty shelves of the Miskatonic Archives. The folders have been kept away from prying eyes for decades and are held in a beautiful clothbound and foil-stamped clamshell box, which will keep your edition looking gorgeous and protect the forbidden secrets held within.

The Miskatonic Papers  is Angel Bomb's largest and most ambitious book to date. You have the chance to get one of the few copies of this unique book. This small edition will go fast and be prized possessions of collectors for years to come.

Every piece was designed, drawn, and printed on 1950s era Heidelberg presses at Angel Bomb. There is even an alphabet unique to this book based upon the oldest known Slavic alphabet, Glagolitic. By modifying the letterforms into a style more in-line with story elements, I created Cthulhic, which plays straight into the story line. Glagolitic was created by a Byzantine monk to spread Christianity, while I imagined Cthulhic was used by ancient peoples for darker deeds. The journal is handwritten and the pages have been artificially aged using archival methods to ensure the book will endure the ravages of time. 

Cthulhic writing, in all it's horror, spelling out the end of times for humanity.
Cthulhic writing, in all it's horror, spelling out the end of times for humanity.

Book Arts

In 2012 I received a Jerome Book Arts grant to create my first letterpress book, The Airship, a digitally enhanced graphic novel. Since then, Angel Bomb has created two more books, one being an activist piece inspired by Thomas Paine's Common Sense, which was funded in part with an Artist Initiative grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. The most recent book was a miniature accordion-fold retelling of Frankenstein to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley's remarkable novel. It was designed with a custom leather-looking box to vend from a vintage cigarette machine. I have also served as Master Printer for two Winter Books published by the world-renown Minnesota Center for Book Arts. With this project, Angel Bomb seeks to build a larger audience allowing me to create and print books full time. These books have won design awards and are featured in the special collections of over thirty university libraries and museums across the country.

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Rewards

I've created rewards at a variety of prices so that even if you can't get one of the limited edition books, you can still show your support at another level. All of the rewards feature artwork from the book.  

Vinyl Stickers

Ward off evil with two 3-inch vinyl stickers. One features the artifact and one of Miskatonic University's logo.
Ward off evil with two 3-inch vinyl stickers. One features the artifact and one of Miskatonic University's logo.

Discovery Telegram 

Own your very own piece of the expedition, a telegram including morse code on ticker tape, just like telegrams used to have.
Own your very own piece of the expedition, a telegram including morse code on ticker tape, just like telegrams used to have.

Set of Coasters  

Set of six letterpress coasters to protect you and your coffee table from the Old Ones. Protect yourself from the madness of coffee rings.
Set of six letterpress coasters to protect you and your coffee table from the Old Ones. Protect yourself from the madness of coffee rings.

 Expedition T-shirt 

Show your support for the expedition by wearing the official T-shirt. No one has ever gone mad wearing the likeness of a cursed item.
Show your support for the expedition by wearing the official T-shirt. No one has ever gone mad wearing the likeness of a cursed item.

Letterpress Print - The Sculpture 

The Sculpture. A single 3-color, 12 x 18 letterpress print, limited edition of 200.

 Letterpress Print - The Temple 

The Temple. A single 3-color, 12 x 18 letterpress print, limited edition of 200.

 Letterpress Print - Cthulhu 

Cthulhu. A single 3-color, 12 x 18 letterpress print, limited edition of 200.

Fragment of the Artifact 

One fragment of the artifact, cast in resin and painted. Do not gaze upon it too long, lest ye go mad!
One fragment of the artifact, cast in resin and painted. Do not gaze upon it too long, lest ye go mad!

Letterpress Print - Set of All Three 

All three letterpress prints with matching edition numbers. 3-color, 12 x 18 letterpress prints, each design is limited to an edition of 200.
All three letterpress prints with matching edition numbers. 3-color, 12 x 18 letterpress prints, each design is limited to an edition of 200.

All Six Fragments of the Artifact 

All six pieces of the artifact, cast in resin and painted and aged. With the entire artifact, you may be tempted to summon an Old One, but I wouldn't recommend it.
All six pieces of the artifact, cast in resin and painted and aged. With the entire artifact, you may be tempted to summon an Old One, but I wouldn't recommend it.

 The Miskatonic Papers + Fragment of Artifact

One copy of the limited edition book, The Miskatonic Papers, which includes 1 fragment of the artifact. Turn down the lights, make sure you're alone, and break the seals. . .
One copy of the limited edition book, The Miskatonic Papers, which includes 1 fragment of the artifact. Turn down the lights, make sure you're alone, and break the seals. . .

 The Miskatonic Papers + Set of Six Fragments of the Artifact  

One copy of the limited edition book, The Miskatonic Papers, plus all six fragments of the artifact. Turn down the lights, make sure you're alone, and break the seals...
One copy of the limited edition book, The Miskatonic Papers, plus all six fragments of the artifact. Turn down the lights, make sure you're alone, and break the seals...

Book Details

The book measures 9.75 x 12.75 x 2.625" with all 50 of the pieces printed on various sheets of French, Glamma, and Mohawk Keaykolour papers. There are some other handmade sheets as well. The fragment of artifact is cast from resin.

Project Costs

Funds raised through this Kickstarter project will go towards paper, negatives, printing plates, binding costs, silicone and resin for the artifacts, boxes and other shipping supplies, and Kickstarter fees.

Social Media and Project Sites

https://www.instagram.com/the_miskatonic_papers/

https://www.angelbomb.com/the-miskatonic-papers

Risks and challenges

I have been designing and producing fine arts books for seven years. With three hand printed books complete, the only difference in this Kickstarter campaign is a desire to reach a wider audience and expand the existential horrors. The book is completely written and illustrated, 20% of which is already printed. As a graphic design and print vendor for hundreds of clients over twenty plus years, I have carefully packaged and shipped products across the globe. Delivery of the finished books by March of 2020 is easily within our capabilities and experience.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 3 or more About US$ 3

    Stickers to Ward Off Evil

    Get two 3 inch round vinyl stickers with designs from The Miskatonic Papers. Receive the Miskatonic University logo decal with their ancient and proud motto: "Stellae sine nomine continent occulta." Also included is a decal of the artifact found by the expedition in Tunguska.

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    Telegram from Tunguska

    A genuine letterpress-printed telegram from the book. It announces the expedition's amazing discovery! But discovery. . . of what? This expedition used telegraphy for the very first time ever! It has teletype strips with morse code and even printed shmutz. Aged and weathered just like the telegrams featured in The Miskatonic Papers.

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    Set of Six Coasters

    Six unique coasters letterpress printed in two-colors with beautiful designs featured in The Miskatonic Papers including mysterious glyphs of Cthulic. This ancient language is closely related to Glagolitic, the oldest known Slavic alphabet. Both elegant and absorbent, these coasters will protect your table and help ward off the madness that comes to those who drink too deeply from the well of darkness.

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    Expedition T-shirt

    Not actually worn on the expedition, these fine screen-printed t-shirts show support for the brave men who risked life and limb to pursue knowledge, however arcane, on a bold adventure. Printed with the Miskatonic University logo and a replica of the artifact found by the expedition. Challenge your friends to decipher the ancient Cthulhic text and ward off Old Ones. Or call them, it's up to you.

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    Letterpress Print

    These stunning prints, each one limited to 200 signed and numbered copies, is letterpress printed in 3 colors. There are three designs to choose from: The Discovery, The Temple, and Cthulhu. Each one is created from notes and artwork of Doctor Freeborn and his men as they suffered from nightmares and looming madness. You will be sent a survey to select which print you desire.

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    Pledge US$ 65 or more About US$ 65

    Artifact Fragment

    A portion of the actual artifact the Miskatonic Tunguska Expedition finds and then so carelessly breaks. The artifact broke into six different pieces and you'll receive one at random. Painted and aged, it will look similar to the photos, but each one will be different. Lots of people went mad after finding this, so maybe don't leave it out in the open.
    **Kickstarter Only**
    You will also receive a set of six coasters and a set of two stickers along with your artifact.

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    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    Set of Three Letterpress Prints

    These beautiful prints are letterpress printed in three colors. You get all three: The Discovery, The Temple, and Cthulhu, all with matching numbers of the edition (limited to 200 for each print). Created from notes and artwork of the expedition members suffering from nightmares, madness, and violence.

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    Pledge US$ 325 or more About US$ 325

    Artifact Fragments - Set of All Six

    All six pieces of the artifact the Miskatonic Tunguska Expedition finds. Painted and aged, it will look similar to the photos, but each complete set will be different. With the entire artifact set and the correct incantations, you're certain to gain the favor of the Old Ones.
    **Kickstarter Only**
    You will also receive the set of six coasters, set of two stickers, and a telegram of the discovery.

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    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    The Miskatonic Papers Limited Edition

    A signed and numbered limited edition of The Miskatonic Papers. You'll receive this aged and weathered experiential book in a beautiful custom foil-stamped clamshell binding, just waiting to be explored. Includes a fragment of the artifact found by the expedition. Each book will also include a personalized letter to you from a mysterious character of the Cthulu Mythos that reaches out to you and invites you to delve into the darkness.
    **Kickstarter Only**
    You will also receive one of the limited edition letterpress prints, selected at random, and mailed free of charge along with both stickers.

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    Pledge US$ 800 or more About US$ 800

    The Miskatonic Papers Plus Full Artifact

    A signed and numbered limited edition of The Miskatonic Papers plus a complete set of all six pieces of the artifact. You'll receive this aged and weathered experiential book in a beautiful custom-foil stamped clamshell binding, just waiting to be explored. Each book will also include a personalized letter to you from a mysterious character of the Cthulu mythos who reaches out to you and invites you to delve into the darkness.
    **Kickstarter Only**
    You will also receive all three of the limited edition letterpress prints with matching edition numbers mailed to you free of charge.

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    Pledge US$ 3,000 or more About US$ 3,000

    The Miskatonic Papers Super Backer

    A personal presentation for those seeking an in-depth understanding of the production of this work of art and the lore surrounding it. I will hand-deliver a signed and numbered copy of The Miskatonic Papers, along with a complete set of the artifact, set of three letterpress prints, set of coasters, and the stickers.
    Together we will explore the many treasures hidden within and how the book came to be. You will also get a set of the three limited edition letterpress prints. This presentation is suitable for a classroom setting or a group of people to discuss the experiential nature of this book, the written language created for it, inspiration from Lovecraft, how this book became reality, what went into the making of it, and will answer any questions you may have about the creative process.
    Travel to international destinations can be arranged with additional Kickstarter contribution. Please contact Angel Bomb for details.

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Funding period

- (30 days)