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Here's the Story, potlucks, secret story swaps, and open sourced, giant games of tag abound throughout 2013!
Here's the Story, potlucks, secret story swaps, and open sourced, giant games of tag abound throughout 2013!
57 backers pledged $5,537 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Here's the Story, a full season of storytelling! project video thumbnail
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$5,537

57

Here's the Story
With this Kickstarter we are putting together all of next year's season. 

There are many ways you can join in on the fun. For a gift of $100.00, you’ll receive a season pass to all of next year's shows at a deep discount, two limited editions art prints from Amy Kuttab, a limited edition Here's the Story Kickstarter t-shirt, our thanks and a cool hand made prayer flag.

We also understand that though some will generously pick up deeper rewards, not everyone in our base has $100.00 to share. Some people don’t have any money to give at all! And that's cool because Here's the Story is for those people!

And if you want in on the excitement rsvp to our Oct 7th event. It's free if you bring a dish! Get excited, download this action pack, follow us @hearsthestory, like us on facebook, go crazy and post a flier up at your favorite coffee shop. Because audience is what we always need most.

Here We Are

Here’s the Story as a non-profit has grown to include all these awesome people, and with their help we have been able to produce shows that tap into people’s inherent wish to play and have adventures well into their adulthood. 

Here's the Story Potluck & Telling

Here’s the Story's main show is one part big old community potluck dinner, and one part theater-full of interested and interesting people who come together to listen and share through the universal art of storytelling.

We wanted to bring people together from Chicago’s various artistic, academic, activist, social and professional communities for the chance to know one another, and to connect across lines that aren’t crossed often enough.

At this show, we feature the stories of 5 people whose lives we find interesting: professors, cab drivers, performance poets, ministers, playwrights, farmers, comedians and of 5 people from our audience. In this way we deliberately share a wide range of experience, and also leave space for the serendipitous and unexpected. The walk-up teller who is given the most audience points after each show is invited to return the next month as a feature, and at the end of the year, we produce a longer solo-show for the teller who receives the most points over the course of a year. In this way we also encourage the art of storytelling, and we foster people who have important stories to tell.

Tellers from all over the Midwest
Tellers from all over the Midwest

Robot Apocalypse: Journey to the End of the Night

Another thing we do is produce street theater events. Our first of those has been organizing and producing a giant, city-wide game of tag called Journey to the End of the Night. JEN was created by the people who brought you Sf0.org and have now spun out to make supergoing.com. It is an open event that has been replicated all over the world. The theme of our game is a Robot Apocalypse, and the route leads players to discover magical and forgotten areas of Chicago while racing from station to station, proving their humanity at theatrical stops along the way by doing things like sharing the story of their first kiss, doing a math problem wrong, or proving they can dance. If they have the wiles and speed to make it seven miles through the city, they are granted an official Proof of Humanity Card, and greeted with a party at the end.

Our next event is coming up on September 15th, please come and join us!

What a Jtteotn might look like.
What a Jtteotn might look like.

Open Story Swaps

We also organize site-specific and satellite story swaps in public spaces in the city… hosting stories about cops in a donut shop, travel-inspired stories on a train trip from Chicago to the Indiana Dunes, and sneaky little gatherings in abandoned buildings. We feel strongly that the small, community-based swaps are important, and have plans to produce more of these community-based, site-specific events as we grow. We would like to hold a total of four of them this year!

Story Swaps and JEN will be 100% free forever!

Finally, we have a bustling website where we feature stories inspired by the live lit shows we see in Chicago, we post information about our own workings, and most of all we host the monthly podcast.

Community Building

Everything we publish on our website is done so with a creative commons license. This includes our monthly podcast. Everyone with internet has access to these stories for free, to share, listen, and remix as they see fit.

We feature prominently at other people's live lit shows, help them organize events, create specialty performances, offer hosting services for other shows/panels and--Chicago being what it is--attend copious amounts of street festivals.

When this project gets funded, Here's the Story will do all this and more in 2013!

A Promise of Transparency

Anyone who invests in Here’s the Story will be updated regularly on what is happening with our shows, and how we are spending money. We have had the opportunity to help fund a number of other projects, and the ones that do regular updates and are clear with how they are spending the money are the ones we are most likely to back in the future.

You will know exactly how much money we take in after fees, how much we pay for rewards, and how the remaining money is spent at the time we spend it.

Stretch Goals

First off, if we make 100%, everyone who donated will get a prayer flag. This one will have Flannery O'Connor's face and say, "You act like you think you got wiser blood than anybody..."

Flannery O'Connor has been unlocked! As well as a new hidden stretch goal.

$5,500 Secret Project Janna&Dan. 

If we reach an $6,000 we will upgrade the server we host the website on and we will get all of our podcasts on itunes by Dec.

At $7,000, we will cut all of the podcasted shows down into individual stories. That way you can listen to the full show, or just your favorite story. We will also finish work on one animated short.

At $8,000, we will work aggressively on remixing the stories from 2012.
Because we publish all our work under a creative commons license, all of it's free to use in new and interesting ways. We have over 24hrs of stories that people can take, re-shape, and remix. This is an underutilized community resource. We will trumpet the call to take the stories and run with them, and we will provide money, time, and extra resources for people to collaborate on using the podcasted stories in new and creative ways. Films, audio mixes, special shows.

Can't get enough storytelling? Check out these other great shows!

[credits: Stefan Saito did our great backer images, Kim Dearnley shot our video, and Podington Bear provided the music.]

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    We appreciate all donations and will gladly thank you on our website and when we see you! Be sure to shoot us a link to anything you'd want plugged. All backers will receive this award.

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    Send us a picture you like. (Can be your face!) We will put all the faces/pictures we get onto our next postcard. These will be made available at the shows to use as a reminder of the show, or to send to friends as a legit postcard.

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    A prayer flag with Faulkner's Face and the phrase, "Kill Your Darlings"

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    Pledge $12 or more About $12

    A GOLDEN TICKET! Above all else we want to see you at the show. Here's the Story hosts the most magical potluck in the city, this is a participatory storytelling event, and now you have the golden key to the castle. These will be one of a kind commemorative tickets perfect for memory boxes, scrap-booking, or tearing up and making wishes on.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    An 8gb Here's the Story Micro SD card with full SD converter. Upon request we will download all of the podcasts and put them on the card.

    (Add $5 shipping, or specify that you'd like to pick it up at the show.)

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    After the Kickstarter closes you'll get to vote on one of three new T-shirt designs. This limited edition shirt will be silk screened and sent to your door. (Add $5.00 for shipping. You can specify that you'd like to pick it up at one of the shows. This comes with a ticket to the monthly show.) Sizes: WS WM WL, MS MM ML MXL.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    Buy everyone pizza for a show. We will put up a sign that says Pizza Donated by

    We will pick up the pizza, and you can enjoy eating it. (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Two 11x17 prints. One Journey to the End of the Night Map. (Digital Print) And one black and white screen-print of Storytelling by Campfire. Both by Amy Kuttab. (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Buy a years worth of plastic cups for Here's the Story. We will tweet a picture when he buys the cups.

    Never run out of cups again! (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Buy a year's worth of utensils for Here's the Story. We will tweet a picture when we buy the utensils. (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Dan will teach you how to screen print. He will help you come up with a design if you need it. If you would like to do a special Here's the Story Design, we have some special shows coming up, and you'd also walk away with a free t-shirt after the lesson. (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Sit in on a Here's the Story Board Meeting.

    This is one of the few times we aren't open to the public. Get a good look at how decisions are made, the vision of Here's the Story, and how we plan on getting there. (Comes with a comp to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2013 Season Pass! You'll never have to bring food! (Though we won't stop you, if it's part of the fun.)

    Our prices are going up next year and this will be the cheapest deal.

    The way this works, you will be permanently on the guest list, plus we will print out a special 2013 season holder card.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    2013 Pass, 2 limited edition art prints, 1 limited edition t-shirt, a prayer flag, and our sincere thanks. (Add $5 shipping or specify that you'd like to pick it up at the show.)

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Name a feature. This can be you or someone you love/know/think is great. Make sure the person you want to tell is available before choosing this reward. We will work to make sure there is a slot open when your chosen feature wants to come and tell a 10-12 minute story. (Comes with a comp to the show.)

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    Stretch Goal Achieved! We are growing our end of year prize. All of this money will be earmarked to a high interest bearing fund which we will grow into an endowment. This endowment will be strictly for the Here's the Story Prize.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Run a Journey to the End of the Night Checkpoint! Have an idea you want to do? Bring your own friends, or let us supply you with extra volunteers. What will your test for humanity be? (For 2013 Journey. This reward comes with a comp to the show.)

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Force Dan & Janna to take you out to dinner. Better yet, make them cook for you! (Comes with two comps to the show.)

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    A private storytelling event with three storytellers in your home for friends. (IL, or contact us first if you are looking for people to road trip. This also comes with two golden tickets to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    We will coordinate a flash mob storytelling show at the location of your choice. *No guarantee # of attendees.

    But we will work as hard to network it as well as we can. Dan & Janna will be there. (Comes with two golden tickets to the monthly show.)

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Open Story Swap & Pizza Party at the location of your choice. (We have suggestions if you need them. The reward also comes with a season pass to the monthly show.)

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  22. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    We will bring a full two hour Here's the Story & Open Swap to any place in the Greater Chicago Area for you. That's two hosts, five features, and five open swaps. If you want, we will promote it along with our normal show, and bring as much of our normal audience as we can. (This pledge comes with two season passes to the monthly show and four golden tickets.)

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    We will organize a Journey to the End of the Night for you.

    A giant game of tag that sprawls all over the city, takes tons of volunteers and brings in hundreds of players.

    The game will be free and open to everyone to participate in. (This pledge comes with four season passes to the monthly show. And eight golden tickets.)

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Funding period

- (41 days)