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An anthology of fantasy stories told by or about bards, with a recipe  from the Black Dragon Inn for each tale.
An anthology of fantasy stories told by or about bards, with a recipe from the Black Dragon Inn for each tale.
360 backers pledged $7,250 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

$7,250

360

Blackspoon Press, in association with Silence in the Library Publishing, is excited to bring you The Bard's Tale - an anthology of short fantasy stories told by or about bards.

The Stories

The authors in this collection of 15 short stories each give their own spin to the concept of the bard, with tales running the gamut from traditional high fantasy to urban and post-apocalyptic fantasy.

The authors of The Bard's Tale are:  Donald J. Bingle, Dylan Birtolo, Tracy Chowdhury, Maxwell Alexander Drake, Stephanie Drummonds, Ed Greenwood, Sarah Hans, Gabrielle Harbowy, Rosemary Jones, C.S. Marks, Muffy Morrigan, Daniel Myers, Brian Pettera, Aaron Rosenberg, and Kelly Swails.

For this anthology we have chosen to follow the model pioneered by Silence in the Library Publishing.  The funding goal for this project was set at a level necessary to produce the anthology and pay the authors a competitive rate for their work, Should the project go above and beyond, the authors will share equally with the publisher in any profit from the sale of books.

The Recipes

Ever wonder what a real bard would eat?  Each of the stories in the anthology will be accompanied by a real recipe from a fictional tavern, The Black Dragon Inn.  The recipes have been carefully adapted from a variety of sources, including medieval European cooking manuscripts, to reflect the unique cuisine of a fantasy world while still appealing to the modern palate.

The Black Dragon Inn is one of those strange little places that exists on the edge of town that somehow seems to be the center of action while still being a quiet refuge. There is a fire in the open hearth that lights the wood of the tables and bar with its warm, flickering glow. The air is filled with smells of wood smoke, and ale, and roasting meat. The barkeep looks up from filling pints for other patrons and nods to you. "Take a seat," she says, "and I'll get you something to eat."

Illustrations

Each of the stories in this anthology will be illustrated by David Szilagyi. Here is David's illustration for "The Haunting of the Lordly Lion" by Ed Greenwood.

Add-ons

$15 - A signed 8x10 print of an illustration of your choice from the anthology (if you're an international backer, please add $3 for shipping)  

$20 - A signed 11x14 print of an illustration of your choice from the anthology. (if you're an international backer, please add $3 for shipping) 

$15 - An extra trade paperback copy of The Bard's Tale (If you've backed at an electronic reward-only level, please add $5 for shipping. If you're an international backer and have backed at a print reward level, please add $5 for shipping. If you're an international backer and have backed at an electronic reward only level, please add $20 for shipping)

Stretch Goals

The Bard's Tale is all about telling stories, so the stretch goals are centered around getting more stories into the hands of the readers.

The First 100 Backers - ACHIEVED - Will get a free digital download of the first novel in Maxwell Alexander Drake's Genesis of Oblivion Saga, Farmers and Mercenaries.

The First 200 Backers - ACHIEVED - Will get a free digital download of Donald J. Bingle's anthology Not-So-Heroic Fantasy. This anthology includes Donald's story "The Eye-Candy of Argon", a critical and satirical re-telling (from a different perspective) of "The Eye Of Argon"--widely regarded as the worst published fantasy story of all time.

$6,250 - ACHIEVED - All backers at or above $5 will get a free digital download of Brian Pettera's novella "The Golden Path" from Bards and Sages Publishing.

$6,500 - ACHIEVED - All backers at or above $5 will get a free digital download of Muffy Morrigan's novels The Sail Weaver and The Hunt.

$7,000 - ACHIEVED - We'll add an original story to the anthology by Forgotten Realms author Richard Lee Byers.

$7,500 - All backers at or above $5 will get a free digital download of C. S. Marks' novel Elfhunter.

$8,000 - We'll add an original story to the anthology by Forgotten Realms author Elaine Cunningham.  

$10,000 - Hard Cover!  We'll produce a hard cover version of the anthology, and make it available to all backers for upgrade or purchase.

Risks and challenges

There are risks and challenges with any project. We've done our best to minimize them by having as much of the book ready to go to press before launching the Kickstarter. The stories have been written, edited, and formatted, and the cover is complete. Some of the interior artwork has also already been finished. The remaining artwork and additional stories for stretch goals add some complexity, but nothing that should delay publication.

Aside from the content of the book, the biggest challenges for a publisher are printing and order fulfillment. We are working with the same printers and shippers that Silence in the Library have used for their projects, and expect the same excellent quality of service. Generally they have been able to get proofs back and books printed within 30 days of sending them the book, but there is always a chance that things will take longer than expected. If that happens and it causes the project to run past the promised date, we will send out regular status updates until the books have arrived.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    TAVERN GUEST: At this level, you'll receive a copy of The Bard's Tale eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice.

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    COOK'S SPECIAL: At this level, your eBook copy of The Bard's Tale (in the DRM-free format of your choice) will come bundled with eBook copies of the fantasy cookbooks by Stephanie Drummonds and Daniel Myers - "A Dwarven Cookbook" and "Garden and Table"

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    BARD: At this level you get the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    COOK'S BOOKSHELF: At this level you get the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF). You also get print and eBook copies of the fantasy cookbooks by Stephanie Drummonds and Daniel Myers - "A Dwarven Cookbook" and "Garden and Table"

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    DRAGON-TAMER: At this level you get an eBook of the novel Blood of Dragons by T.R. Chowdhury and T.M. Crim, along with the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, and the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    BARD's BUNDLE: At this level, in addition to all the goodies from the COOK'S BOOKSHELF, you can have an 11x14 limited, numbered, and signed print of an illustration of your choice from the anthology.

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    STEAMBARD: At this level, in addition to the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, and the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF), you also get a pair of Eye Loupe goggles from PH Factor.

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    CHAINED BARD: At this level, in addition to the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, and the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF), you also get a custom bard-themed watch chain made by author Muffy Morrigan.

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    TRACY CHOWDHURY TUCKERIZATION. At this level you have the opportunity to be written into Tracy Chowdhury's story for The Bard's Tale. You'll also receive the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    SARAH HANS TUCKERIZATION. At this level you have the opportunity to be written into Sarah Hans' story for The Bard's Tale. You'll also receive the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    BRIAN PETTERA TUCKERIZATION. At this level you have the opportunity to be written into Brian Pettera's story for The Bard's Tale. You'll also receive the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    GABRIELLE HARBOWY TUCKERIZATION. At this level you have the opportunity to be written into Gabrielle Harbowy's story for The Bard's Tale. You'll also receive the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    C S MARKS TUCKERIZATION. At this level you have the opportunity to be written into C S Marks' story for The Bard's Tale. You'll also receive the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, as well as the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF).

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    MUSE: At this level, in addition to the trade paperback edition of The Bard's Tale, and the eBook in the DRM-free format of your choice (EPUB, MOBI, or PDF), you get to immortalize yourself, celebrate a friend/fictional character, or eviscerate an enemy in song! Acclaimed filker-bard C.S. Marks will compose and record an original song just for you-based on information you provide. Chris is known for infusing humor, satire, and a good deal of silliness into her musical offerings, which include such classics as "Beacon Post Four," "Plastic Legolas," and "The Ballad of Steve." (Some restrictions apply)

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    TAVERN OWNER: At this level, in addition to all the goodies from the BARD'S BUNDLE, you can have the book dedicated to you or someone of your choosing.

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Funding period

- (30 days)