About this project
Reward packs which include the Book Three eBook set will now also include the first chapter of Book FOUR (Chapter 16).
Multiplex Movie Review Milestone Goals!
If we can reach the following milestones, I will watch and draw comics of the Multiplex 10's resident film snob Jason reviewing selected works of his arch-nemesis, Michael Bay. (One strip per movie!)
- $20,000 before July 28 at Midnight (Central)
The Rock — UNLOCKED AND POSTED!
- $22,000 before July 29 at Midnight (Central)
Bad Boys and Bad Boys II — UNLOCKED!
- $24,000 before July 30 at Midnight (Central)
ALL FOUR TRANSFORMERS MOVIES DIRECTED BY ACTION AUTEUR MICHAEL BAY — UNLOCKED!
Multiplex is an online comic about the staff of a movie theater. It has been running for ten years — since July 10, 2005. I've previously run, funded and fulfilled two Kickstarter projects, for the print collections Multiplex: Enjoy Your Show and Multiplex: There and Back Again. And now, the Multiplex gang is back, hoping to raise funds to produce a third collection… Multiplex: The Revenge!
Multiplex: The Revenge will contain Chapters 11–15 of the series (strips #217–338, which ran from March 2008 to March 2009). In this volume, Jason and Angie get serious, the Multiplex 10 and Flickhead crews battle it out on the silver screen (sort of), and Gretchen has her long overdue comeuppance.
All of the Multiplex books strive to be new-reader friendly, so if you haven't read either of the first two books (or haven't read them in a long time), there will be a six-page "The Story So Far" comic to get you up to speed. And even if you've read all the comics online, there will be about 35 pages of all-new material to flesh out all the dramedy. That's over four months worth of comics!
All the new material means there's finally room to answer one of the questions I get asked most at conventions — "Whatever happened to Brian?" Brian (and his accomplice) will turn up in a few bonus strips spread throughout the book expanding on their existing appearances, and culminating in an all-new arc at the end of the book set on opening night of Zack Snyder's Watchmen!
Rather than working on the new material for the book sporadically in my "free time" (ha!) between freelance design or illustration work, with your help, I can get the book in your hands next year. I know I would rather be working on Multiplex, and I know Multiplex fans would prefer that, too! I hope I can count on your support to help me continue the Multiplex book series.
Who are you?
I'm Gordon McAlpin, the writer and illustrator of Multiplex. I've previously run — and fulfilled — two Kickstarter projects, for the first two print collections.
Multiplex: Enjoy Your Show (Book One) was enthusiastically reviewed by the Chicago Tribune, Fandomania, Weekly Comic Book Review, Comics Waiting Room and a host of other comics sites and publications. Multiplex: There and Back Again (Book Two) won the Gold medal for Graphic Novel/Drawn Book–Humor/Cartoon in the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Awards.
Tell me more about these crazy rewards!
PDF eBooks! Multiplex is illustrated with vector shapes using Adobe Illustrator. The PDF eBooks preserve the art as vectors, making them the best possible reproduction and a really fun way to read the strip, especially on a tablet.
The eBooks will be made available to backers as they are completed. Chapters 1–11 are already finished and will be made available to backers with them in their reward packs as soon as the project is successfully funded!
Mini-posters! The set of three 11"x17" mini-posters included in several of the rewards packs will feature the movie poster parody artwork from the T-shirts for the last two Kickstarter projects — plus one brand new design parodying a movie poster suggested by you, the Kickstarter backers. Brokeback Multiplex? The Multiplex Strikes Back? It's up to you! (Posters will be folded in half for shipment.)
UPDATE: I totally forgot about another older parody poster I did, so let's make that FOUR instead:
Bookmarks! Bookmarks included with the Basic Sponsor Pack (and up) will look similar to this. The "frames" will pull from throughout the Multiplex series, however, not just Book One:
Sketches! Original character sketches included with Premium Sponsor Pack will look something like this, though not all sketches will be toned with Copics; I like to figure something out that feels appropriate to each sketch:
Be an extra in Book Three! With the Extra pack (as well as the Strip Pack and the Dinner and a Movie Pack), you will appear in one of the bonus comics for Book Three. You may or may not have a line of dialogue (they haven't been written yet; it's kind of the luck of the draw), but you will get a digital image of you as you appear in the strip suitable for use as a social media avatar.
Movie Review Comics! With the Movie Snob Pack (and up), you can select a movie — any (non-pornographic) movie — for me to write and draw a review comic strip featuring either Jason and/or Kurt, whomever qyou prefer (if you have a preference). Here's an example from the Book Two Kickstarter project:
NOTE: To keep shipping costs down, all physical rewards will be shipped at the same time, in as few shipments as possible, when Book Three is ready to ship — approximately September 2016.
The funding goal — the amount needed to create and ship the books and all the rewards — is $24,000. The largest expense, of course, is the print run. Due to increases in both labor and material costs (probably inflation, too), the printing quotes I’ve seen have been at least 30% higher than for Book Two (despite identical specs and projected quantities), and so the funding goal needs to be higher to account for that and the increased fees and income taxes.
I'd also like to use BackerKit (or a similar service), which introduces an additional expense but should greatly simplify the fulfillment and pre-order process for non-backers — as well as give you the ability to upgrade your rewards package even after the funding period has ended.
All the numbers below are approximate, but this breakdown gives you some idea of where the funding will go:
- Printing, including proofs, freight from China, customs, etc.: approx. $8,000
- Production costs, including the creation of Book Three’s new material, print production/pre-press, proofreading, rewards creation, fulfillment, etc.: $6000
- Income taxes: 15% ($3,600)
- Kickstarter fees: 5% ($1,200)
- Payment processing fees: approx. 4% ($960)
- BackerKit, to facilitate order fulfillment/upgrades (tentative): $299 setup fee + 1% of total funds ($240)
- Postage and shipping supplies: $2000
- Rewards printing: $700
- Warehousing/storage fees (one year): $300
- Marketing/promotion (of the book): $700
This budget is meant to give me a little wiggle room, because at $6,000 for roughly six months of work, I’m only making about minimum wage for the time I’ll be working on the book and will not be able to absorb any overages as I did with Book One. (This factors in $600/month from my ongoing Patreon project, which covers the ongoing expenses for the webcomic during that same timeframe.)
Kickstarter funds will be used solely for book-related expenses. If there are any funds remaining once the project is completely fulfilled, I will continue to push forward with the bonus material for the collected editions — and include the eBooks of any chapters produced to backers with the Book Three eBooks (Chapters 11–15).
As with the Kickstarter projects for Books One and Two, this project doesn’t only fund the print run for the books, but also the production of the new material in the book.
- Production will begin as soon as the Kickstarter project passes its funding goal — even before the funds have been received!
- Fall/early winter 2015: Short break in production for my final semester of grad school
- Winter 2015: Resume production of bonus material (2–3 months)
- Spring 2016: Production of the book (layout, proofreading, pre-press)
- Late Spring 2016: Send files to printer, proofing (one month)
- Summer 2016: The book printer will work its magic while I produce the rewards (mini-posters, bookmarks, etc.)
- Late Summer/Early Fall 2016: Fulfillment!
I'm hoping to have the books and all rewards in backers' hands in September 2016. I think this is a fairly conservative estimate.
If we go over the goal, every penny pledged will go toward the production of future Multiplex collections.
For every additional $2,000, I’ll be able to continue working on bonus strips for the collected editions and laying out the print book — reducing the production costs needed for a future Book Four Kickstarter Project.
Chapters 16–20 comprise Book Four, which was conceived as the conclusion to “Act One” of Multiplex’s planned nine book run.
$26,000: CHAPTER 17 EBOOK — I'll also produce the bonus comics for Chapter 17 AND add the finished eBook to all reward packs that include the Book Three eBooks.
$38,000: CHAPTERS 18–20 EBOOKS — I'll produce the bonus comics for Chapters 18–20 AND add the finished eBook to all reward packs that include the Book Three eBooks. (Chapters 18–20 don’t have as much new material in them as 16 or 17.)
Thank you once again for your support!
Special thanks go out to the people who helped me with the "book trailer" in the project video:
Karyn Dossinger as “Gretchen”
Matt Matonich as “Josh” as “The Hulk”
Brandon J. Carr as “Movie Trailer Voice Guy”
Background music courtesy Purple Planet
Risks and challenges
I don't anticipate a September 2016 release date being a challenge. While I can't work on the book during the fall semester, if funded, I will be working full time on Multiplex (including the regular updates) for the rest of the summer and after completing my MFA in December. My timeline on the first Kickstarter project was a bit too optimistic, and I ended up going over budget as a result; I've made every effort to make this timeline more conservative.
There is one likely wrinkle next summer (my fiancée and I making an interstate move next summer) but this has already been factored into the timeline. If it ends up not happening (I’ll know in the next six months or so), the books may be able to ship early.
The biggest risk is not making our goal!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The "Digital Pack" ($18 US level) is what you want. It contains the eBooks for Chapters 1–15. (Book One is 1–5, Book Two is 6–10, Book Three is 11–15.) Sorry that wasn't clear!
I'll also be putting together another PDF of the guest comics and such from Books One–Three to add to that, as well, so the only interesting thing it won't include is the 12-page "Prequel" story in Book One. Unfortunately, there's a licensed film still from Star Wars: Episode III—Revenge of the Sith in it, and Lucasfilm will only license it to me for the print editions, not eBooks, so that story has to remain exclusive to the print collection.
The main reason I don't just do a "Book Two" or "Book Three" eBook, though, is that the way I do them retains the vector artwork, so they're already around 50mb each (and the more recent comics are even bigger, because the art gets more complex). If I put all of them into one PDF, it'd be an enormous file and most PDF readers would choke on it.
Incidentally, because of the transparency effects and other complex elements, I recommend using Adobe Reader or Apple's Preview. (Other readers might handle it well, but I don't have experience with them.) And the files are formatted to be read in "Continuous Page" or "Continuous Scroll" mode (the name varies by reader).
Unfortunately, I'm sold out of them now. (I have my own personal copy, and that's it!)
BUT — it is currently available from Amazon and Amazon.ca (and possibly a few other Amazons)!
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