Anna O'Brien had her future set, scratching out a living in the remote hills of southern Appalachia with her new husband at the turn of the 20th century. Now, cast out by tragedy and strange magic, she’s bound to wander the countryside, living by her wits and banishing spirits for her work. But for Anna, some things aren’t so easily settled, and some traditions aren’t so easily forgotten. Dark, ancient things are stirring in the woods, awakened by the war between the states, by the new roads, the belching locomotives and logging cuts. There’s granny witchery and her own roots to learn. If she’s going to survive, she’d better learn them fast...
Anna O’Brien: Ghost Days is an illustrated collection of short stories, with tales of the uncanny that draw from the (often misunderstood) history and folklore of the Southern Appalachians. An enchanted mask that exacts a powerful price; a bank heist that runs afoul of an undead curse; dark things yearning for an even darker savior on a remote hill; and two women tormented by a relentless suitor.
Born out of a deep love for the southern mountains, Ghost Days is road trip through a world on the brink of massive upheaval and ecological collapse, a world of old traditions and remnant spirits. It's a mix of historical fiction and magical realism, plus a hefty dose of monsters, hags and haints. If you like the work of Mike Mignola, Andrzej Sapkowski, and Manley Wade Wellman, this is the book for you.
But you don't have to take our word for it. You can read the first story, Wampus Mask, for free right here!
We're asking for $7,000 to make a physical book!
The manuscript for Anna O'Brien: Ghost Days is already written, and the art is already done. Should we make our goal, we will deliver unto you an 8" x 5.5" (22 cm x 28 cm) perfect bound book, with black and white interiors. It will have eight stories and nine gorgeous interior illustrations, comprising about 52,000 words and around 250 pages.
Here's an early mockup of the cover!
And one of Tiffany's interior illustrations, from the story Night on the Bald.
In addition to digital and physical copies of the book, we're offering a number of rewards! These include digital extras like research notes, author commentary and tutorial videos. But what about physical rewards, you ask?
But that's not all! We're also offering a limited number of hardcovers, plus two collectible, hand-annotated editions at $800, which will never be available again!
We got ‘em! At $7,500 we’ll add a process section in the back, including a sketchbook portion from Tiffany and folklore and research notes from Asher. This is a feature we've seen in comics, and we feel it would be neat to have something similar in a fiction collection. [UNLOCKED!]
At $10,000, some of Asher's original design sketches (which you can see in the backer updates!) will be added to the already unlocked sketchbook portion of the book! [UNLOCKED!]
If we crack to $11,500, then we’ll produce a print run of 500 books through PrintNinja, which will be sold in bookstores and on Amazon, given to libraries, and released out into the world! [UNLOCKED!]
If we get to $12,500, Tiffany will produce five new interior illustrations for the book, giving you even more spooky bang for your buck! [UNLOCKED!]
And if we reach $14,000, we’ll upgrade the print run to 500 hardcovers, which means everybody who’s pledged at the paperback level will get a hardcover book! (These books will only be signed if you’ve pledged above the 75$ tier.) [UNLOCKED!]
If we reached $16,500, K Stellar Dutcher of the indie folk band The Seventh String will write, record and release an Anna O'Brien single! [UNLOCKED!]
Asher Elbein is a journalist and short fiction writer based in Austin, Texas. He began writing fiction in high school, briefly set it aside to focus on narrative journalism, and now makes time in his life for both. His work has previously appeared in The New York Times, The Texas Observer, The Atlantic, Bitter Southerner, Oxford American, and Audubon. He likes hats, folk music, wandering back roads and wild places, looking for snakes and listening to stories. You can visit his website at www.asherelbein.com
Tiffany Turrill is an illustrator, concept artist, and ex-Texan based in the San Francisco Bay area. She works in publishing and games, and has created pictures for the likes of DC Comics, Fantasy Flight Games, and Disney Interactive. She’s designed horrifying monsters for a Star Wars game no one will ever see, illustrated two very sweet children’s picture books, and enjoys creating toothy monstrosities on her spare time. You can visit her website at www.tiffanyturrill.com
Gretchen Felker-Martin is a writer and film critic. Her work has appeared on Polygon, Ignota, and VRV as well as in the comics anthology Mirror Mirror 2. She is the author of No End Will Be Found, a horror novella about the witch trials of Wurzburg, and writes the weekly film column In the Flesh for the VRV Blog. Born in backwoods New Hampshire, she now lives with friends and her cat in Massachusetts.
Good question! You pledge a certain amount to back this project. If you back at certain funding levels, you get rewards. If the project is funded, we get to make the book, and you get it as well as that sweet, sweet merchandise. If we don’t make our goal, you won’t be charged! Not a penny.
In the interest of transparency--and to explain why we’ve set a high funding goal--We’ve worked out the costs for the goal as follows:
- $1,800 for Tiffany’s art;
- $400 for editing by the fantastic Gretchen Felker-Martin;
- $1200 for book design;
- $1000 for pin/patch/sticker designs and production
- $1500 for print-on-demand to match backer levels;
- $1200 (to account for unanticipated costs and Amazon/Kickstarter’s cut)
We’ll be utilizing print-on-demand through Ingram and MakeThatThing for fulfillment services. Both come highly recommended and have a proven track record for producing products and getting them out on time.
We hope to have a finished book by February at the latest, and all physical rewards--pins, prints, original art--will ship with the book. Digital rewards, including ebooks, should ship by December.
Risks and challenges
As this is our first kickstarter, we’ve taken every opportunity to minimize risk. The manuscript is written and edited; the art is done. We just need your help to make sure everyone gets paid for their time, and to make sure we can hire the designer and print the book!
Any snags, obstacles, or delays will be promptly addressed, and Asher will be in constant communication to update backers and insure that the rewards are delivered on time.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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