Holy moly, we were fully funded in just one week! That means we get to produce this book and you get to read it. Thank you!
Our initial goal was the minimum we needed to be able to send the book to print. In the next three weeks, the total amount pledged here will determine our print run. Starting at $6,000, we'll start adding 500 books per thousand dollars raised. What will this achieve? From a business perspective, it will, ahem, get the unit cost down. From a magic perspective, it will mean even more people will get to spend some time in a vivid, imaginary world where women shed their corsets and become sports heroes. Talk about a win-win.
Now about this project, really:
We grew up reading about imaginary worlds where men called the shots and had the adventures, and women were stuck with the supporting roles. And we grew up reading about futures built on rocket fuel rather than human power.
But we didn't confine our own imaginations to such a narrow path...and neither, it turns out, have many, many readers out there. Thus, the genre of feminist bicycle science fiction was born. Using cumulative decades of publishing experience, we produced three Bikes in Space anthologies (with more in the works!), and started to cast our nets for longer, more satisfying books to put out there, full of inspiring women getting things done on two wheels.
We are proud to announce that the first full Bikes in Space novel is Emily June Street's stunning steampunk sports action thriller, The Velocipede Races.
About The Velocipede Races:
Have you ever dreamed of being an astronaut? A ballerina? A politician? A doctor? And has someone else, or even just a voice in your head, told you that you can't do it, that you would fail, that the world wouldn't approve, just because of who you are?
Set in the imaginary city of Seren, the story follows Emmeline Escot, a teenage heroine with a rich internal life who seeks to become a pioneer in the all-male sport of racing bicycle-like velocipedes. Her singleminded pursuit of her dream has a series of unexpected and often-disastrous consequences, leaving the very real question open: Will she prevail in the end?
You can only find out in The Velocipede Races... and we can only publish it if this project is funded. If this project is a success, the book will be in bookstores everywhere on April 12th ... and in your hands 3+ months early!
About the rewards:
The default for book rewards are in good, old fashioned paperback format! For some rewards, you'll be able to request an ebook instead when reward surveys go out.
The Velocipede Races: The book itself! A satisfying 256 page read with a gorgeous cover illustration by Caroline Paquette and a story that will have you itching to get up and do the things you most long to do in life.
Bikes in Space books: Three of these collections are in print! The original zine is nearly out of print, and copies are limited. Volume 2 is a stupendous, book-length collection of intersectional bicycle sci fi with strong heroines. Pedal Zombies is the third and newest in the series, and the first to have a theme, which is, well, self-explanatory.
The Gantean and The Cedna Emily June Street's newest books are the first two installments in an ongoing epic fantasy series, Tales of Blood & Light, featuring powerful magic, world-spanning adventures, unconventional romance, and one of the most compelling and unstoppable heroines in the genre.
The Bicycle BFF: A subscription to Microcosm's many bicycle-related books, starting with The Velocipede Races. Learn more about it here.
An excerpt from the book:
"How can I explain what it was like to ride a racing velo for the first time out of doors? You could only understand my exhilaration if you had experienced a long-term denial of your greatest desire. I had been forced to observe a thrilling game, but never been allowed to play. Suddenly I had a place on the field. The air caressed my face. A mania captured me; as Gabriel and I pedaled out the city gates into the western hills, I let loose a yell, a shout of triumph and joy that reverberated in the pit of my soul. Gabriel rode faster. I matched him, keeping time with the rhythm of his legs. We moved together like a body and its reflection in a mirror. We did not need to speak to know which way to turn, when to brake, when to accelerate. We were the two halves of a whole, and riding was what we had been born to do together."
Here's what people are saying about The Velocipede Races:
Cherie Priest, New York Times Bestselling author of Boneshaker, calls it "Tense, thoughtful, and truly thrilling; The Velocipede Races is a marvelous fantasy of manners and machinery."
Benjamin Parzybok, author of Sherwood Nation, wrote, "This novel made me want to burn my corset. Emmy—half ingenue and half Olympian athlete—is trapped in a staid and hidebound culture. And when she starts breaking all the rules, it’s wicked fun to be along for the ride. There was definitely a sense of eating something so good that I could not stop eating it."
Momentum Magazine says, "Escot is a heroine for determined women everywhere, casting aside notions of propriety to chase her dream on two wheels."
About Microcosm / Elly Blue Publishing: Elly Blue has been publishing feminist books about all things bicycle since 2010. In 2015, she joined forces with Microcosm Publishing, which has been producing brightly-colored, self-empowering, radically-minded books since 1996 (that's 20 years this coming February!). The EBP imprint is still going strong; The Velocipede Races is our fifth book under the Microcosm banner (and our second feminist bicycle science fiction one—here's a great review of the first one, Pedal Zombies, which contains a story by Emily and also happens to be one potential reward for this project!). Together, we are excitedly publishing all the books we've always wished existed, many of them about bikes!
About the author:
Emily lives in California with her husband and two mutts. When not hanging upside down in her Pilates studio or madly editing a fantasy saga, she can be found cycling or swinging on a flying trapeze. You can follow her on twitter at @emilyjunestreet. Rumor has it that she is working on a sequel to The Velocipede Races that involves skateboarding.
Risks and challenges
Our office could burn down, our printer could go on strike, there could be a worldwide paper shortage, Congress could dismantle the postal system, and drought-related fires could shut down the highways between our offices in Oregon and our printer in Illinois... and so long as this project is funded, we would still publish this book, because that's how we roll.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (29 days)