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NESS is a Del Toro/Lovecraft-inspired cosmic horror story set on the shores of Loch Ness. A big, scary monster movie in comic form.
NESS is a Del Toro/Lovecraft-inspired cosmic horror story set on the shores of Loch Ness. A big, scary monster movie in comic form.
354 backers pledged £3,490 to help bring this project to life.

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£3,490

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UPDATE: Here's a look at the ART CARDS, available as a reward. Featuring art by Rob Carey, Gav Mitchell, and photoshop silliness by Ian Nesbit.

Important: If you grab a paper copy of the book, you'll get a digital version too. (That isn't very clear from the rewards section, sorry!)

Note! There's an unfortunate error on the Original Cover reward. UK postage is supposed to be free but it's charging £2 for some reason. I've contacted Kickstarter to hopefully get this fixed. If not, all backers at that level will get something extra thrown in to make up for the postage cost. Forgive me!

So, NESS.

NESS is a four-part, full colour comic miniseries set in Scotland, on the world-famous shores of Loch Ness. It has monsters, action, adventure, scares, creepy bad guys, a good dose of Lovecraftian cosmic horror, and a lot of twisted Scottish mythology.

I wanted to give the UK its very own giant monster (Japan has Godzilla, America has Cloverfield and, er, sometimes Godzilla...) because giant monsters are endlessly fascinating to me. Where better to set the story than the home of everyone's favourite cryptozoological creature, the Loch Ness Monster? 

Loch Ness is one of the most inspiring places I've ever been. It's an excellent location and I'm excited to set a story there. Real-world buildings and areas will show up in the story, though some bits have been invented/adapted.

This Kickstarter is to fund the first issue (which is 22 pages of story + pin up gallery and extras). If it goes well, we're all prepped and ready to start on Issue #2.

Here's the 'Original' cover:

(Scroll down to read the PREVIEW on this page, in the PREVIEW section)

NESS is the story of CEIT and her friends on a trip to the Loch to scatter the ashes of Ceit's late mother. They just so happen to arrive the morning after the Loch's final protector is killed by one of the many beasts he and his small tribe have been warding off. He was the last member of a local cult dedicated to keeping the monsters in check, and with him and his kind now gone, the things that lurk in the deep, dark waters, and hide in the surrounding hills, are free to run riot...

In Issue One we see the strange creatures testing the waters, as it were, and venturing out onto land. Causing havoc and terrifying the locals... scaring them so much, in fact, they consider their only option to be a worthy human sacrifice... and who better than the group of young adults who've just wandered into town?

Issue Two (and Three, and Four) will see the group encountering more monsters, meeting almost-friendly faces taken from Scottish myth and folklore, and uncovering a plan to ultimately... well, that's all stuff for the later issues. No spoilers.

(But we promise it's worth waiting for).

Ness is about...

  • Loss.
  • Grief.
  • Adapting.
  • Destruction/Rebirth.
  • Heritage.
  • And lots of scary monsters.

Ness features...

  • A Lovecraft influence to the story.
  • A Del Toro influence to the design.
  • A mysterious woman that collects the clothes of the dead.
  • An amulet.
  • A sacred book.
  • And, er, lots of scary monsters.

That's the preview! Rob Carey is working on new pages now, which I'll post here as they come in. (They'll be uncoloured, unlettered, but you'll get the gist.)

Funds raised by the Kickstarter will go towards finishing the inks, colours, lettering, printing, Kickstarter's fees, producing the rewards, and posting it all out to you.

(Note: All pages are still a work in progress, and may change slightly between now and print).

Iain Laurie, Original Art, Rad As Hell
Iain Laurie, Original Art, Rad As Hell

 ART CARDS:

Dean Beattie of Random Trials

Iain Laurie of ...And Then Emily Was Gone (colours by Harry Saxon)

Gavin Mitchell of The Trolltooth Wars

Rachel Smith of The Rabbit

Ammar Al-Chalabi of Wart - The Comic

ALSO AVAILABLE AS A TEE!

And finally, DAN HARRIS of LOU SCANNON and DRUID INVESTIGATIONS.

That's it for now...

I don't want to look too far ahead, but I've had some ideas and some great offers from people wanting to get on board, so here they are:
  • £2600. At that point, everyone will receive a custom tourist map of Loch Ness showing important locations mentioned in the story. A real cool bit of fake memorabilia. (All postal backers will receive a physical poster, all digital backers will receive a PDF.)

After that, I'll announce more... including new rewards for everyone (around £3000), bonuses for the art team (around £3500), and other rad stuff (around £3800). Until we hit...

  • £4200. Tom Ward (of Merrick The Sensational Elephant Man) is going to pen a short comic story set in the NESS universe, expanding on one of the plot points in Issue 1. He's been bugging me about it so I figured I should let him. He's alright. (If we get close, we'll announce an art team). This will be released digitally to all backers.

If we go higher than that, then I'll put some thought into something else that'll blow your socks clean off. Until then, I'll keep quiet and not tempt fate...

Why Kickstarter?

Kickstarter is ace. Used correctly, it’s an incredible tool for creators and fans alike. We want to make stuff, and you fine folks decide if it looks good enough or not. Hopefully you’ll like it enough to kick some funds our way and we can go on to finish this book. It’s also A LOT OF FUN. Coming up with the rewards and generally interacting with everyone is a blast. I’ve used Kickstarter for other projects (WART and DOC DINO) and deeply value the connections I’ve made through those campaigns. Now I'm hoping to take that experience and know-how to fund this four-part series about big monsters at Loch Ness. It's probably the best thing I've ever written (so far...), I'm super proud of it, and the whole art team is doing amazing work - with your help, we can make this a real thing, which I wouldn't be able to do on my own. That's exciting. I'm excited.

Chris Welsh - Chris is a comic/screenplay writer who co-created WART, DOC DINO and is now responsible for NESS. No one has produced any of his screenplays. YET. He lives in Liverpool, England with his beloved laptop and too many books. He drinks rum. @C_W_Writes

Robert Carey - Rob is an illustrator from Dublin, Ireland and has worked on a variety of projects, including comics published in Lightning Strike anthology, North Bend, The Life and Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, and Afterworld. @Mansloth

Dee Cunniffe - Dee has worked for nearly every publisher as a flatter/colour assistant to some of the world’s top colour artists. Recent credits include The Wicked + The Divine and ODY-C. @Deezoid

Robin Jones - Rob Jones is a British comic writer, part of the publishing misfits Madius Comics, and letterer. He is always the nominee, never the winner, and the proud owner of both of his kneecaps. You can find him on Facebook at his lettering page RobJonesLetters, or harrass him on Twitter at: @RobJonesWrites

Special thanks to James McCulloch, a real life Scottish gent who went through the dialogue for me and made sure it was reasonably authentic.

HEY LOOK! SUPPORTIVE QUOTES FROM EXCELLENT COMIC PEOPLE!

"If the superb writing and beautiful art weren't enough to convince you, it's got ancient cults and giant monsters in it. What more do you need?! Ness is a book that won't just grab your attention, it will wrap its gruesome tentacle around you and never let you go. BACK IT." - Barney, The Awesome Comics Podcast @AwesomePod

"Beautifully visualised by the art team of Rob Carey and Dee Cunniffe, NESS pairs a striking sense of place with a lurking air of dread. An eerie, enigmatic slice of Caledonian Gothic." - John Lees, of '...And Then Emily Was Gone', 'The Standard' and 'Quilte'.

"As with the brutally humbled vampire, recent attempts to domesticate Nessie have yielded ever-diminishing returns. Here at last is a truly monstrous Loch Ness Monster. Sweet dreams, backers!" - Alex Paknadel, writer of Turncoat and Arcadia (Boom!)

"SpookiNess. EerieNess. SexiNess? EpicNess!" - Sarah Millman, writer/artist of Heart Of Time, punster.

"Haunting art, a great introduction to what I hope is going to be an excellent story..." - John Freeman, downthetubes.net

"Madly intriguing. Plus there's a bare ass on page two." - Corey Fryia, Doctor Crowe

"Nessie appears to have moved to the Thames last week in an unfortunate turn of events, but fear not, this makes Ness no less relevant as a beautiful character-driven monster horror rollercoaster." - Tom Ward, Merrick The Sensational Elephant Man

"A dank, dark and creepy looking horror story which will make us never want to look into a Loch again!" - Pipedream Comics, pipedreamcomics.co.uk

"It's fine. Not as good as Wart." - Ammar Al-Chalabi, artist of Wart - The Comic.

Early backer bonus: The first 50 physical backers will get a signed, doodled-on Kickstarter-exclusive NESS Bookplate on each copy they pick up.- ARGH, ALL GONE, SORRY!

Risks and challenges

This isn't my first Kickstarter rodeo, but I know from experience how things can get a bit hectic.

So far I've successfully run (and delivered on) two campaigns for my main series WART, and one for the dinosaur-buddy-cop-surgical-drama DOC DINO. I've also been involved in the campaign for the horror anthology THE GRIME Issue One.
With that experience, I'm confident I can deliver Ness- Issue One in a timely fashion, as promised, with my usual high-standards in place.

The scripts are completed for each issue in the four-part series and Rob Carey is finishing the inks on Issue One as the campaign runs. Your money will go to colours, finishing the inks, lettering, printing, producing the Kickstarter prints and extras, Kickstarter's fees, and postage. Any extra cash raised will go towards the Kickstarter for Issue Two, meaing a lower goal.

I've already put up my own cash to fund the completed preview and the majority of the inks, as well as the production of pin ups and extra artwork. I don't anticipate getting this back, but I strongly believe the investment in this book was worth it.

If there are any hiccups along the way to production, I promise to take responsibility, keep everyone in the loop, and work hard to get this book finished and out there. Having said that, I don't foresee any, unless one of the team is eaten by a giant sinister water-dwelling creature (or drowns whilst hunting one).

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £2 or more About $2.85

    DIGITALNESS

    A digital file of Issue One, with your name in the THANK YOU section.

    You'll get a .pdf and a .cbr version, DRM free.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £3 or more About $4

    DIGITALNESS + NESS EXTRAS

    A digital file of Issue One, with your name in the THANK YOU section.

    You'll get a .pdf and a .cbr version, DRM free.

    PLUS digital versions of all the other rewards on this page (prints, art cards, etc)

    AND a PDF of the Ness Issue One Script by Chris Welsh.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £4 or more About $6

    PHYSICALNESS - Original Cover

    A paper copy of Issue One with the ORIGINAL COVER, with your name in the THANK YOU section.

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £4 or more About $6

    PHYSICALNESS - Variant Cover

    A paper copy of Issue One with the VARIANT COVER, with your name in the THANK YOU section.

    Variant cover by Dean Beattie.

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

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    39 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £6 or more About $9

    PHYSICALNESS + ART CARD BUNDLE

    A paper copy of Issue One with the COVER OF YOUR CHOICE, with your name in the THANK YOU section.
    + 5 ART CARDS

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    (If you would like both covers, please add £4 to this reward and let me know!)

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £8 or more About $11

    DELUXE PHYSICALNESS - BOTH COVERS

    TWO paper copies of Issue One, one of each cover, with your name in the THANK YOU section.

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.
    Cover One art by Rob Carey
    Cover Two art by Dean Beattie

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    Also, digital copies included.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £9 or more About $13

    PHYSICALNESS + ART CARD BUNDLE + PRINT OF YOUR CHOICE

    A paper copy of Issue One with the COVER OF YOUR CHOICE, with your name in the THANK YOU section.
    + 5 ART CARDS
    + High Quality A4 ART PRINT of your choice
    + Digital copies

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    (If you would like both covers, please add £4 to this reward and let me know!)

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About $14

    MONSTER DIGITAL BUNDLE

    Get everything I've put out, in .pdf and .cbr versions, DRM free.

    NESS Issue One, Wart books 1-2-3 (with Ammar Al-Chalabi), The Grime Issue 1 (Horror Anthology story- Blinded, with Kevin Allen + 4 other great stories by other fine folk), Old Enough To Know (8pg short with David Pavol), and Doc Dino Issue #1 (with Tom Ward, Mac Radwanski, Dee Cunniffe, and Micah Myers).

    You'll also get the other rewards on this page in digital formats. The prints, art cards, etc.

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £16 or more About $23

    PHYSICALNESS + ART CARD BUNDLE + ALL 6 PRINTS

    A paper copy of Issue One with the COVER OF YOUR CHOICE, with your name in the THANK YOU section.
    + 5 ART CARDS
    + ALL SIX A4 ART PRINTS

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    (If you would like both covers, please add £4 to this reward and let me know!)

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    12 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $28

    PHYSICALNESS + ART CARD BUNDLE + ALL SIX PRINTS + MONSTER DIGITAL BUNDLE

    A paper copy of Issue One with the COVER OF YOUR CHOICE, with your name in the THANK YOU section.
    + 5 ART CARDS
    + ALL SIX High Quality Art Prints
    + Everything in MONSTER DIGITAL BUNDLE

    22 pages of monster action on high-quality paper.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    (If you would like both covers, please add £4 to this reward and let me know!)

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    20 backers
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge £22 or more About $31

    TEE + Original Cover Issue #1.

    Are you cold? Topless? Well then grab yourself one of these NESS tees. Designed by Ammar Al-Chalabi (of WART fame), the tees will be black with a white design, and available in S,M,L and XL in Male and Female fits.

    Also comes with the digital files mentioned above.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

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    4 backers
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge £24 or more About $34

    RETAILER PACKAGE
    Got yourself a shop? Get yourself 12 copies of NESS #1 to sell. That's £2 per issue (with free postage, if you're in the UK) and I'll even sign them for you.

    If you're within reasonable driving distance of Liverpool, I'd even be willing to come along and sell them myself.

    Also included, some prints and advertising-friendly stuff.

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge £36 or more About $51

    TEE + EVERYTHING ELSE

    Are you cold? Topless? Well then grab yourself one of these NESS tees. Designed by Ammar Al-Chalabi (of WART fame), the tees will be black with a white design, and available in S,M,L and XL in Male and Female fits.

    + BOTH covers
    + Art cards
    + All prints
    + all the digital files mentioned above.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

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    Pledge £45 or more About $64

    PHYSICALNESS + BE IN THE NEXT BOOK

    A paper copy of Issue One with the COVER OF YOUR CHOICE, with your name in the THANK YOU section.
    + 5 ART CARDS
    + High Quality A4 ART PRINT of your choice
    + BE A VILLAGER IN ISSUE TWO. You'll get a line!

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED

    (If you would like both covers, please add £4 to this reward and let me know!)

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    Reward no longer available 4 backers
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  15. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £99 or more About $141

    The ORIGINAL art piece by Iain Laurie, artist on 'And Then Emily Was Gone'. There's only one available, so grab it quick.

    Plus - Both covers of the physical book, art cards, and another print of your choice.

    UK POSTAGE INCLUDED.

    Original art will be sent recorded delivery (where possible) in a tube, separate from the books.

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    Reward no longer available 1 backer
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  16. Select this reward

    Pledge £120 or more About $171

    COMMISSION BUNDLE

    Artist ROB CAREY will do you a special commission - A fully inked, A3 sized, single character piece of art. Your choice.

    Plus - Both covers of the physical book, art cards, and a print of your choice.

    FREE UK POSTAGE

    Original art will be sent recorded delivery (where possible), in a tube, separate from the books.

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Funding period

- (29 days)