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Please help publish a steampunk adventure novel so a neo-noir feature film can get finished and in front of distributors.
Please help publish a steampunk adventure novel so a neo-noir feature film can get finished and in front of distributors.
Please help publish a steampunk adventure novel so a neo-noir feature film can get finished and in front of distributors.
97 backers pledged $4,246 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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The Wind Merchant & greyscale

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Thank you to everyone who supported this campaign!  I can't express how grateful I am for your help in finishing Greyscale (www.GreyscaleMovie.com) and The Wind Merchant (www.TheWindMerchant.com).

Check out the Facebook Page for future updates and I'll announce when it's finished.  You all are amazing!

-Ryan

Update! (1/13/12)

We made it in 3.5 days!  That's incredible!  A NEW REWARD has been added: A screener copy of Greyscale on DVD at the $40 backer level, and it's thrown in to every level above that!

There have been so many people be a part of this project that have either given money or their time that I would love to see be repaid sooner rather than later.

Mission A: Get funding for the 5.1 surround mix to finish the film - ACCOMPLISHED!

Mission B: Help the 160+ people that were a part of Greyscale!

The Basics

Hi there!  My name is Ryan Dunlap and I tell stories and I'm looking to Kickstart a novel in order to fund the last piece of a 4 year feature film project so it can get in front of distributor.

So what is The Wind Merchant?

The Wind Merchant is a steampunk fantasy adventure novel where giant mechanical cities fly above the long forgotten dangerous world beneath the cloud cover, the world's natural energy source is found on the wind, and intrepid airship pilots fly to dangerous places to collect it.  

It's the story of Erasmus "Ras" Veir, who runs the family trade of being one of the last of a dying breed of Wind Merchants after his father died ten years prior on a mysterious mission given to him by someone who should have been dead long ago.  However, his father's piloting abilities were not passed down through the gene pool and Ras has both an absolutely horrid sense of direction and a total lack of sensitivity to the energy on the wind to know where to go to collect it.

When Ras happens upon a potent source of energy, he inadvertently wrecks the delicate balance of fuel on the wind that keeps his hometown, the flying city of Verdant, aloft.  Ras has little choice but to set out to save the city with the help of Calista Tourbillon, the girl next door, who has spent most of her young life sequestered in a basement reading books, writing stories, and dreaming of a chance to finally leave Verdant and see the world.

Leaving Verdant behind before it's too late to return to it, the pair set out on an adventure filled with dread sky pirates, clockwork automatons, and the remnants that still live in the long forgotten world beneath the clouds on a quest to fly to a place only known as The Wild (which may have been the same mission that claimed the life of Ras' father) to retrieve a rare element on the wind.

Why did you write this?

As an only child I've been telling stories in my backyard since I can remember, and once we got a computer, I spent countless hours writing stories that featured Ras Veir (a blog post about that), and after having the wonderful opportunity to make a feature film, I found myself wanting to continue to write even when my responsibility was to finish Greyscale.  Since I couldn't exactly start out on a new narrative feature, I remembered my childhood years where I didn't need casting calls and location scoutings to figure out what sort of story I could tell... I could have a working airship in my story and not have to worry about how to pull it off convincingly in post production, so writing The Wind Merchant has been a return to my love of storytelling in a realm where telling stories was financially feasible.

As pictured above, the first draft of the book is being handwritten in a Turkish leather-bound book given to me by my sister-in-law, and having the analog experience has been wonderful for the writing process.

Where does the money go?

First off, Kickstarter and Amazon take about 8-10% off the top. 

After that, the printing and shipping cost of the physical books/prints account for a sizeable chunk since I'm doing short run printing. (RAISED!)

After that, the money will cover the self-publishing costs (licensing the cover art, acquiring ISBNs for the 3 different formats of the book, paying the set-up costs with the different printers of the paperback and hardback, and paying for the software that organizes and digitizes the book into the Kindle, Nook, and PDF formats). (RAISED!)

Then the final step until completion: $1,500 that will pay for 3 days of studio time to give Greyscale the 5.1 surround sound mix that it needs before it can be finished and shown to distributors before they will consider buying it. (RAISED!)

(NOW) Finally, any extra money that comes in will go to pay back the cast, crew, and investors that have given their time and money toward this project over the last 4 years, and I very much look forward to being able to not have to wait for a distribution deal to start giving some back.

What if I want to help, but I can’t pledge financially?

I completely understand.  You can help me just by posting this Kickstarter page on the social network of your choosing to raise the general awareness of this project.  This will help me incredibly!

I noticed your hair is considerably longer than it was in the clips of Greyscale.  What's with that?

As soon as I began post production I began to let it grow out to A) not let myself be tempted to do reshoots, and B) remind myself daily that I have a responsibility to a lot of people to finish something big, so every time I look in the mirror I'm reminded of what I have to do. 

So any help in letting me not wind up with Sampson-esque socially awkward hair is much appreciated.


Anybody you'd like to thank?

Always.  First off, I'd like to thank God for putting me on this path and giving me the experiences that have shaped me to be able to tell stories that I tell.  I'd like to thank my beautiful and supportive wife Sarah for encouraging me to write a book and to never give up.  My parents, for instilling in me the hope that I could do anything if I put my mind to it, and helping me achieve my dreams (and buying a VHS camcorder to plug into the TV so I could 'make movies' by dancing around as a little boy); and my friends that have put their blood, sweat, tears, and sometimes money to be able to tell stories like Leave Me, Greyscale, and The Wind Merchant.

I couldn't do any of this without these people, and I won't let myself forget it... especially in the morning when I have to comb my hair.

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    {THE LEAVE ME THEME PACKAGE} You have my absolute gratitude as well as all updates on both The Wind Merchant and Greyscale, as well an mp3 of the Leave Me theme, released for the first time.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    {THE DIGITAL MERCHANT}
    The eBook of The Wind Merchant sent to you in your choice of format (.mobi for Kindle, ePub for Nook, or .pdf), plus the Leave Me credits music as well as the main theme.

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    15 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    {THE DAROS SHORTS PACKAGE}
    All of the above, plus as soon as the Kickstarter concludes, HD digital downloads of the Daros Films shorts: Leave Me, Dear Shane (exclusively on Hulu.com at the moment), and 12:01, and the piano notation of the Leave Me theme.

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    7 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    {THE DIXIE PACKAGE} Who is Dixie? Well, she's a fireball of a character in The Wind Merchant who won't shut up. All of the above (for July '12), plus the AUDIOBOOK, professionally recorded and personally read by me as a digital download.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    {THE BRASS FOX PACKAGE} All of the above, plus a signed paperback copy of The Wind Merchant and a personal handwritten note of thanks written with the pen that wrote the book, shipped from me to you.

    NOTE: If you want more than 1 copy, select this option and add $25 per copy you'd like.

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    20 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    {THE MONOCHROME PACKAGE} NEW REWARD LEVEL! The Brass Fox Package PLUS a screener copy of a certain neo-noir film that I've been working on for the last 4 years as soon as it is completed. Yes, this is the limited time window to see GREYSCALE before it gets distribution. Once this campaign is up, then you'll have to wait until it goes through the distribution process. // NOTE: Every package above this level ($50/$100/$150/$250) AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE this reward.

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    5 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    {THE SILVER FOX PACKAGE} Want something more substantial? How about we upgrade THE BRASS FOX PACKAGE with the paperback to a limited edition signed dust jacketed HARDCOVER. This Kickstarter campaign is the only time to get a hardcover. Also, your name will go on the Thank You page in the book. // NOTE: If you want more than 1 copy, select this option and add $50 per copy you'd like. If you'd like to add any paperback copies, add $25 per copy and we can work out the details of how many of each copy you'd like.

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    Limited 32 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    {THE HALCYON PACKAGE} The Silver Fox Package plus a 8.5"x11" print of Grant Cooley's The Getaway (customized for The Wind Merchant), signed by the artist. // NOTE: If you want more than 1 hardback copy, select this option and add $50 per copy you'd like. If you'd like to add any paperback copies, add $25 per copy and we can work out the details of how many of each copy you'd like.

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    Limited 3 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    {THE VERDANT PACKAGE} The Silver Fox Package plus a 12"x19" print of Grant Cooley's The Getaway (customized for The Wind Merchant), signed by the artist. // NOTE: If you want more than 1 hardback copy, select this option and add $50 per copy you'd like. If you'd like to add any paperback copies, add $25 per copy and we can work out the details of how many of each copy you'd like.

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  10. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    {THE KINGFISHER PACKAGE} The Verdant Package plus one of three handwritten copies of the Kickstarter exclusive short story. // NOTE: If you want more than 1 hardback copy, select this option and add $50 per copy you'd like. If you'd like to add any paperback copies, add $25 per copy and we can work out the details of how many of each copy you'd like.

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    Reward no longer available 3 backers
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Funding period

- (25 days)