Lesbian fighter pilots. Transgender sorcerers. Nonbinary rock stars. Asexual interstellar explorers. Demiromantic goddesses. Bisexual detectives. Gay gunslingers.
What we have heard over and over and over again from friends, popular queer writers, book reviews, and people on the internet is that the queer community wants to see stories about people like themselves that don't fixate on how "alternative" our lifestyle is, or the various "issues" we face, like coming out, transitioning, understanding their sexuality, etc. We want to enjoy the same awesome books, movies, video games, etc. that we have always enjoyed. We just want our protagonists to be queer.
Vitality is a literary magazine filled with entertaining stories of all genres that feature queer protagonists. We include short stories, poetry, comics, art, and anything else you can fit in a magazine. The possibilities are absolutely limitless. And every single one centers around queer people.
We have already released a short mini zine to show off the kind of thing we're about. You can download it for free at our website - click here! But we need you to take these stories to the next level.
Your donations will go directly towards making Vitality happen. Our first issue is slated for early 2015, and we hope to make it about 60 pages long, filled cover to cover with short stories, flash fiction, poetry, comics, and art all centered around a positive portrayal of queerness.
With your support, we will be able to pay our writers and artists a fair, industry-standard price for their work. This will encourage quality writers to submit to the magazine, and support queer artists, enabling them to produce even more great work.
We will be able to create a beautiful, vibrant magazine without cluttering it up with ads. The only ads we will be printing will be minimal, and go in a special "Thank you" section at the back of the magazine, leaving the rest of the pages to be 100% content.
We will be able to do a full-color print run of the magazine, as well as publish digital copies. Color printing costs a ton, and with your help we'll be able to print Vitality in all its glory without skimping on quality.
If we are lucky enough to meet our goal of $5,000, we have prepared the following stretch goals:
- $8,000 - we will be able to fully fund a second issue of the magazine, slated for summer 2015.
$10,000 - first issue will be 100 pages instead of 60, and will also be "perfect bound."
- $12,000 - all stories in the first issue will be illustrated in full color instead of only a portion having illustrations.
$15,000 - we will produce another free minizine to be released separately and available for anyone to download, sometime before the second issue.
Here is a handy chart to help you figure out the reward levels:
To download our sample mini-zine, go to ReadVitality.com/minizine! Our first issue will be along similar lines, but with loads more content. .
Ads : We will work with you to create your ad to the best of our ability. We have the right to refuse offensive or rude ads, or ads that violate the spirit of our magazine.
The t-shirts will be screen-printed, cotton charcoal grey unisex t-shirts, and come in adult sizes from S-4XL. We are offering TWO OPTIONS for t-shirt designs.
On the front, they will say "I'm a ______" and on the back "and my story is vital" with Vitality's url on the back. We will write in your custom identifier on the front in permanent, high-quality Vitality-blue t-shirt paint. We're going to use professional-grade t-shirt paint and heat cure it so it will not come off in the wash.
The idea behind the shirts is to say "I'm a [queer character] and my story is vital!" so your shirt can say "I'm an asexual astronaut" or "I'm a gay unicorn" or "I'm a transgender sorcerer," or anything you like! However, we will refuse to write rude or offensive things on the shirts, so keep it clean.
This is an EXAMPLE of our idea for the t-shirt. Sizes and placement are not FINAL. Text, text color, shirt color, etc. are final, however.
And when we handwrite it, it will look something like this. Again, note, we are actually going to hand-write these, so this digital image is just an example. ((for identities beginning with a vowel, we will add an n to make it "I'm an."))
This is an EXAMPLE of our idea for the t-shirt, not the exact t-shirt. But the front WILL have the logo and the back WILL say "queer stories are vital."
Stuff packs - two stickers and two bookmarks with the Vitality logo. Stickers will be vinyl 2 x 3" stickers with rounded edges. Bookmarks will be double-sided with rounded edges with the Vitality logo on one side and "queer stories are vital" on the other side.
A rough example of what we're going for with the sticker and bookmak designs:
^^NOTE: NOT THE FINAL DESIGNS. ROUGH EXAMPLE ONLY.^^
Due to Kickstarter regulations, we cannot provide more than 10 of a single item. The only exception to this would be if you would like to purchase copies of the first issue to donate to a GSA, library, or other organization that would not actually be sent to you, and even then, we cannot send more than 10 to a single location.
For t-shirts - add $15 for each additional t-shirt.
For copies of the first issue - add $10 for each additional copy.
Stuff packs - add $5 to your pledge and receive an additional stuff pack containing two stickers and two bookmarks with the Vitality logo
Risks and challenges
Our biggest challenges are going to be getting the kind of quality material we want in our magazine, and getting it to the people who want it most.
Getting material - A lot of publishers don't publish queer lit because they think it doesn't sell. Because of this, there aren't as many writers writing queer lit. By offering a competitive rate of pay for those who submit to our magazine, we can prove that it is worthwhile to write queer content, and encourage writers to submit to us. By running this kickstarter and gaining publicity and funding, we are proving there is a need, and there are people out there willing to pay for stories that represent who they are. All of this goes toward getting the writers and artists to create the work we want, and to give them an outlet to share those stories with the world.
Getting it to the readers - This magazine is powered by a handful of young people with a passion for great fiction and great writing. We don't have a publishing company backing us up or a long list of connections in the writing world. What we do have is a strong social media presence, especially across tumblr, where we have all been active for years. Using our connections in the online queer and reading communities, we hope to spread this zine to everyone who ever said they wanted to read these kinds of stories.
The best way that I can prove to you that we're qualified to do this is to show you what we've already done. Please download our free minizine at readvitality.com!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)