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Former Nickelodeon animator invents the next big leap in entertainment: an illustrated, interactive story on social media.

CLOSING STATEMENT:

Thanks to all who supported Hawk Funn. We did not reach funding but will find another way to tell Hawk's story. Read more here.

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The original pitch:

Imagine stepping into the pages of a book, or through a TV screen, to talk with the characters?

For the first time ever, we're letting you go inside a story to interact in real time.

It's not magic. It's a new art form that brings an illustrated story to life on social media. Following books, radio, movies and television, this next great evolution of entertainment is engineered specifically for the internet.

We're a couple of talented storytellers with a groundbreaking idea. We're on Kickstarter because we don't otherwise have the money to produce it. We ask you to support us, the innovators, the hard-working dreamers who will create entertainment you care about.

We developed a really fantastic story for the premiere...

The Story:

Hawk Funn is an epic story about an entrepreneur and family man who tears apart suburbia in order to improve the American economy. The main character, Hawk, is an eccentric, creative visionary who challenges consumptive culture through the hypocrisy of growing his company.

Where It Gets Interesting:

Hawk's life is driven by his deep rooted fear of the indoors. Because he never goes inside, he lives an all-outdoor lifestyle camping in the suburbs with his family. His wife and daughter want a house. Fund the story to find out from where Hawk's odd fear stems.

The Long Term Plot:

Hawk's business, Campanion, is rising in the camping industry. Inspired by visionaries like Jobs and Disney, Hawk Funn will gain fame alongside his camping empire. Follow him as he transforms the suburbs into an outdoor paradise, a path which challenges his family and friends.

Fiction + Reality = The Twist:

What if some of it were real? It's entirely possible that Hawk's fictional camping products are someday manufactured for real. It starts with an engaging story where you get to know Hawk. Fund the story if you like Hawk's creative outdoor products.

The first of many Campanion products developed by Hawk: Aircelona Chair, Teepee, Wassity Chair, Outichoke Lantern
The first of many Campanion products developed by Hawk: Aircelona Chair, Teepee, Wassity Chair, Outichoke Lantern

Why THIS story?

It's purposeful that we're telling the story of a visionary and a disruptor. The story of Hawk Funn is written not merely to entertain, but to challenge you to face your own fears, and inspire you to follow your own passions. 

Revolutionary Social Storytelling:

We're pioneering the next great leap in entertainment. We call it "social fiction," a story told across the entire internet and based in social media.

Social fiction works like this. A cast of fictional characters are on social networks like Facebook and Twitter. They post about their daily lives in the same way you do, except the posts follow a plot. It's a story told in real time.

YOU step inside the story:

Because it's social, you take part in the narrative. Go ahead, comment and have conversations with the characters. You never know what you might say that influences the story.

We're illustrating Hawk Funn so we can do anything our minds can imagine, like Hawk's home campground in their suburban neighborhood.

A prototype story is live right now!

Go like Hawk's Facebook page to join hundreds of others in this "light version" of the story. Don't let it die at the end of this Kickstarter. Pledge today.

You're pledge goes to the first season of Hawk Funn, which is planned for 8 months, to end in April 2014.

Culture advances when technology and art collide in new and profound ways. 

We're at a crucial moment in history to take fiction and entertainment online in unprecedented ways. Social fiction will happen. It's only a matter of when. We want YOU to help shape this new art form today.

The Dream Factory

Years ago, I began designing innovative camping products. As a cartoonist, not an industrial designer, I lacked the resources to build them. They are now Hawk's products. With the success of the story, we will devote future resources (not from this Kickstarter) to manufacture fun outdoor gear. Our dream is that one day you'll be able to buy real products from a fictional company. :)

The Dream Studio

We envision a production studio specifically to make more social fiction stories. We want to employ writers, artists, production teams, software developers, and more. This is the start of a new industry.

Hiring soon: Following the success of this Kickstarter, we'll be hiring our first position, a "social media actor" to assist in being characters online.

Creative Team

I'm a former storyboard artist and background designer for Nickelodeon Animation and Cartoon Network, having worked on Hey Arnold!, Oswald the Octopus, and other animated shows. I've also created, written, and drawn comic strips for children and adults. 

Visual storytelling is my passion.

I'm a freelance illustrator in Boulder, Colorado, and have been part of several technology startups, including one of my own. Hawk Funn is the culmination of several camping themed stories and projects I've developed over the years.

I infuse characters with emotional depth so you care about them.

I'm a published fiction writer, teacher, freelance editor, and blogger. I've worked with top publishers and literary magazines, in advertising and technology, and as a drink slinger and failed actor. I currently live in Berkeley, California.

ALL or NOTHING:

If we don't raise our funding goal in 30 days, Kickstarter gives us nothing and the story, which already started, will be forced to die. Please share this page here.

WHAT YOU GET

We've devised some innovative rewards exclusive to Kickstarter backers for a richer social fiction experience, plus original artwork. Read the FAQs at the bottom of this page for more reward info.

Story Rewards:

To involve YOU in the story, we've devised innovative rewards exclusive to Kickstarter backers for a richer social fiction experience.

  • $24 - Receive a weekly ebook of the story.
  • $25- Vote for what happens next, bi-monthly.
  • $50 - Join the (fictional) Official Hawk Funn Fan Club.

Artwork Rewards:

This is your only chance to get authentic drawings from the world's first illustrated social fiction.

  • $100 - Own an original drawing of Hawk.
  • $300 - Own original production art from the story.

Character Rewards:

This is your chance to star in Hawk Funn. Imagine being in a movie or TV show but not having to show up for production. In Hawk Funn, we'll write your character. You just be the star.

  • $1,000 - Be as supporting character in the story.
  • $2,500 - Be a "symbolic" character, Hawk's fear or future.
  • $5,000 - Be a main character, Hawk's business partner.

Your age and gender don't matter. Be who you want. We'll make it work.

Supporting characters include:

  • Hawk's close friend 1.
  • Hawk's close friend 2.
  • January's (Hawk's wife) best friend.
  • Next door neighbor, one side.
  • Next door neighbor, other side.
  • Rival neighbor across the street.
  • Moderator of the fan club (from $50 reward).
  • Hawk's most obsessed die-hard fan.
  • Journalist covering Hawk's career and life.
  • Hawk's assistant at Campanion, his company.
  • Head of Industrial Design, Campanion.
  • Head of Manufacturing, Campanion.
  • Head of Marketing, Campanion.
  • Campanion's lead investor.
  • Hawk's architect of campgrounds.

Financials

We've budgeted lean, but with padding to grow. This will give us about 8 months of production.

A large amount goes to salary because we need to hire a "social media actor" to comment as characters in the audience interactions.

Monetizing: Read in the FAQ below about how we'll make money to keep Hawk's story going for years. 


- Your pledge tells a fantastic story.

- Your pledge gets you inside the story.

- Your pledge supports a new art form. 

Scroll up and choose your reward to be included in Hawk Funn.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

This project requires A LOT of content creation in order to tell an authentic story. As a new real-time art form, there will be bumps in the road as we find our production rhythm. It's possible story posts or audience interactions will be delayed at times but we'll always work to catch up.

FAQ

  • $24 - GET THE STORY VIA EMAIL - If you just want to see Hawk Funn without participating on social media, this is the way to do it. Read the story on your own time. You can still drop in and comment on Facebook if you later choose. You can unsubscribe at any time.

    $25 - VOTE FOR WHAT HAPPENS NEXT - Voting will happen via a 3rd party site twice a month. Hawk will email you a link to the survey asking for help making a decision. You can opt out at any time.

    $50 - THE FICTIONAL OFFICIAL HAWK FUNN FAN CLUB - The fan club will use Facebook's group feature. You'll be invited to join and can leave at any time. The story content in the group will be public to view, but only Kickstarter backers can interact within the group.

    $100 - OWN AN ORIGINAL DRAWING OF HAWK - Drawings of Hawk will be created in pencil on archival paper. Each will be signed by creator, Steve Lowtwait. Each drawing will be original and different from the next. They will be numbered based on how many pledges were made for this reward.

    $300 - OWN ORIGINAL PRODUCTION ART FROM THE STORY - You'll get to choose which production drawing you want on a first pledge, first choice basis. A gallery page will be made online to display all of them where you can see the details. Each comes with a certificate of authenticity.

    $1,000, $2,500, $5,000 - BE CHARACTERS IN THE STORY - Characters will be named after you, illustrated to your likeness, and given some of your real background in their profile. We will send you a survey so you can tell us what things you want included in your character. We will also need a photo or two in order to illustrate your character.

    Last updated:
  • It's because I live in the mountains outside of Boulder, Colorado. Let me explain. Amazon handles all the payments for Kickstarter, but they don't accept P.O. boxes as an address for payment processing. Where I live, the post office doesn't deliver, so I only have a P.O. box. My street address is considered invalid to Amazon. Scottech Group is my dad's company (with a real bonafide mailing address). Processing the payments through him has been approved by Amazon and Kickstarter.

    REMINDER: You won't be charged unless the project reaches its goal at the end.

    Last updated:
  • During this Kickstarter, we're posting a "light version" of the story, approximately 3 times a week. It's the real story and we're getting into the plot. Once funding is successful, we'll take about two weeks before Hawk begins posting on a more regular basis.

    Last updated:
  • We envision Hawk's story lasting several years but in order to attain that, we will monetize it. First, we must prove this new concept which is why you're funding the first season. Once there is an audience, we can offer merchandise or franchise the characters. We're following the Disney model of entertainment preceding commerce.

    Furthermore, we will offer the production of social fiction to companies wishing to reach their customers through innovative storytelling. We will launch these efforts well before our Kickstarter funds begin to run out.

    Last updated:
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$4,471
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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    11 backers

    LOVE --- Hawk's love can be bought. This is real fictional love we're talking about, and it's cheap. Welcome to the backer community.

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  • Pledge $25 or more
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    28 backers

    VOTE FOR WHAT HAPPENS NEXT --- When Hawk is unsure of what to do, he'll turn to you, his audience, for direction. At least twice a month, you'll get to cast your vote to shape the direction of this real-time story. Voting rights are exclusive to Kickstarter backers. Votes could be for anything from Hawk's next product to what to do regarding a quarrel with his wife.

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    14 backers

    JOIN THE FICTIONAL OFFICIAL HAWK FUNN FAN CLUB --- It's a club within Hawk's fictional world that praises his creative accolades as he gains fame, not a group devoted to the story's production. The club will publish exclusive story content and insider info that only you can interact with, moderated by a character. Using Facebook's group feature, the fan club will be limited to Kickstarter backers for one year before opened publicly. +++ This reward also includes story voting rights.

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  • Pledge $100 or more
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    14 backers

    OWN AN ORIGINAL DRAWING OF HAWK --- Receive an original pencil drawing of Hawk, numbered and signed by creator and story artist, Steve Lowtwait. Drawings are 8x10 on archival paper. +++ This reward includes story voting & the fan club.

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    3 backers Limited (157 left of 160)

    OWN ORIGINAL PRODUCTION ART --- Receive an actual drawing used in creating the story. The final color illustrations in Hawk Funn are made digitally on an iPad but each starts out as a pencil drawing on paper. You'll get to choose which drawing you want on a first pledge, first choice basis. Each comes with a certificate of authenticity. Production art may include any number of characters and events that happen throughout the story. +++ This reward includes story voting & the fan club.

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    BE A SUPPORTING CHARACTER --- A character will be illustrated to your likeness, named after you, and be given some of your real background. Supporting characters will be written by us and will appear regularly in the story. Available roles include Hawk's friends and neighbors, a few key rivals, and his coworkers. See a list of available characters in the rewards description to the left. Choose your character on a first pledge/first choice basis. +++ Additionally, you will receive an original production drawing in which your character appears. +++ This reward also includes story voting rights.

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    BE A SYMBOLIC CHARACTER: THE INDOORS --- Hawk fears the indoors, the underlying driver of his lifestyle. This is a chance to not only be a main character, but to be part of Hawk's personality. The "indoors" character will be named after you, illustrated to your likeness, and be given some of your real background. The character will be written by us and appear frequently in the story. +++ Additionally, you will receive 2 original production drawings in which your character appears. +++ This reward also includes story voting rights.

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  • Pledge $2,500 or more
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    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    BE A SYMBOLIC CHARACTER: THE FUTURE --- Like all visionary entrepreneurs, Hawk has a sense of foresight into the future of his business and family. This is a chance to not only be a main character, but to be part of Hawk's personality. The "future" character will be named after you, illustrated to your likeness, and be given some of your real background. The character will be written by us and appear frequently in the story. +++ Additionally, you will receive 2 original production drawings in which your character appears. +++ This reward also includes story voting rights.

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    Add $8 USD to ship outside the US
  • Pledge $5,000 or more
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    BE A MAIN CHARACTER: BUSINESS PARTNER --- Spoiler alert! Hawk will take on a business partner soon, a main character that will appear quite frequently. The character of Hawk's business partner will be illustrated to your likeness, named after you, and be given some of your real background, and be written by us into the story. The rise of their company is a key theme in the plot, and Hawk and his partner will make a great duo worth following. This character will be Hawk's right hand man or woman, and will only be second to Hawk's wife in the story. +++ Additionally, you will receive 3 original production drawings in which your character appears. +++ This reward also includes story voting rights.

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Funding period

- (30 days)