Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
Perfect-bound and glossy, BROKEN WIND and DELEGATES & DELEGATION
Perfect-bound and glossy, BROKEN WIND and DELEGATES & DELEGATION
1,672 backers pledged $129,334 to help bring this project to life.

About

$129,334

1,672

It is high time we put the next two Schlock Mercenary books into print, and into your hands. We love these books, and we're excited for you to have them.

THE BOOKS

Broken Wind: Schlock Mercenary Volume 14

      "Think of it as a great, big can full of sky... You could drop Mars into that can, and then tuck Luna and Europa in on top."

Cover art by Howard Tayler and Travis Walton. Design by Sandra Tayler, Howard Tayler, and K.B. Spangler.
Cover art by Howard Tayler and Travis Walton. Design by Sandra Tayler, Howard Tayler, and K.B. Spangler.

     The  Toughs have taken a small contract in a very, very big place. It's just  the sort of mission Captain Tagon excels at, but his gunboat isn't  answering to him, and his command chain includes the outed spy who stole  the gunboat, the retired general who took it for a joyride, and the  disgraced major from whom it was stolen in the first place.

     With  air on both sides of the airlock it's tempting to start throwing people  through it. They'll fall for days, provided nothing with wings decides  they look tasty...

This comprehensive print collection will be 176 pages  long, perfect-bound in full color, with 9 pages of all-new story and over 30 pieces of margin art.  

Delegates and Delegation: Schlock Mercenary Volume 15

"I have standing orders to start exactly zero wars."

Cover art by Howard Tayler and Travis Walton. Design by Sandra Tayler, Howard Tayler, and K.B. Spangler.
Cover art by Howard Tayler and Travis Walton. Design by Sandra Tayler, Howard Tayler, and K.B. Spangler.


Captain  Alexia Murtaugh has a new ship, and a new contract to provide embassy  security. Sergeant Schlock has a new title, and a shiny new "get out of  jail free" card. Lieutenant Haley Sorlie has new friends, new implants  for spying on them, and a newfound distaste for the politics of  diplomacy.
      As Earth orbits its way into a new  century her people have new allies, new enemies, and that old, familiar  panic one gets upon discovering that there really is something new under  the sun. 

This print collection will be 160 pages  long, perfect-bound in full color, with 9 pages all new story, and over 30 pieces of margin art.  

WHY WE USE KICKSTARTER

For years we handled our print runs by taking pre-orders in our online store. Last year we changed that, using Kickstarter for the pre-orders of Random Access Memorabilia: Schlock Mercenary Book 13. We were very pleased with the way it worked out.

  • We like Kickstarter's system for communication between us and you, our backers. 
  • Kickstarter delivers a great pre-order experience for backers, and with Backerkit we get very robust fulfillment tools, making the job of shipping thousands of books much easier on us than it's been in the past. 
  • Kickstarting this print run lets us offer you more than we've been able to offer in the past.

When we say "offer more," we don't mean "more pages." The books are finished, and we're all better served if we don't mess around with  that part. We'll be offering additional merchandise, both physical and digital, that we wouldn't otherwise be able to produce. You'll find those in the Stretch Goals.

STRETCH GOALS

$60,000 Desktop Backgrounds - UNLOCKED!

All backers at 1 book pdf level and above will get desktop backgrounds featuring the cover art for Broken Wind and Delegates & Delegation. 

(Howard has finished a few of them already, and is trying them out.)

Howard's over-the-drawing-table monitor, now with 100% more BROKEN WIND
Howard's over-the-drawing-table monitor, now with 100% more BROKEN WIND

$70,000  Fleet coins - UNLOCKED!

Three new ship coins, one each for Broken Wind, Neosynchronicity, and Cindercone. The coins will be available to purchase as add-ons for $10 each. We cleared this goal, and Howard has finished the line-art for the ships. Here's Broken Wind:

The mercenary warship BROKEN WIND, featuring some detail that almost never shows up in the strip.
The mercenary warship BROKEN WIND, featuring some detail that almost never shows up in the strip.

$80,000 Maxim 70 Key fob - UNLOCKED!

Maxim 70 reads: "Failure isn't an option. It's mandatory. The option is whether or not to let failure be the last thing you do" Our M70 coin has been one of our most popular challenge coins. This time we want to reprint it as a key fob, so that you can more easily keep it close. The key fob will be available as an add-on for $10.

Photo by Daniel Jones. Photoshop Hackery by Howard Tayler. The final key fob will look much nicer than this.
Photo by Daniel Jones. Photoshop Hackery by Howard Tayler. The final key fob will look much nicer than this.

$90,000 The Reprints - UNLOCKED!

Teraport Wars: Schlock Mercenary Volume 2, is almost out of stock, posing a problem for building book sets. A second printing isn't cheap, so that's where the lion's share of these stretch funds will end up.  

Reprints aren't terribly exciting, however, so we're offering you something else, too: 

This will be a PDF/Mobi/ebook collection of stories that have appeared in other publications. Absence of paper notwithstanding, that does technically make it a reprint, and we've just said that's not exciting, but it should be exciting because most of you haven't seen these, so they're new to you. Also, they'll be included with any purchase that includes electronic versions of books 14 and 15.   

The four stories in this book are "UI," first appearing Shared Nightmares, "An Honest Death," first appearing in Shadows Beneath, "Flight of the Runewright" from Space Eldritch, and "Fall of the Runewrought" from Space Eldritch II: The Haunted Stars. Taken together they add up to about 46,000+ words, which is about half the length of your average novel. 

This story collection will be given to all backers at 2 book PDF level and above.

$105,000 More coins -  UNLOCKED!

Two more challenge coins: Sanctum Adroit, which is the contract police force of Eina Afa  (and Murtaugh's former employer) and JSC, the Jurisindependent Security  Covenant, the capitol city police of Dom Atlantis on Earth. These coins are available as add-ons for $10 each.

$110,000 Sketch Book PDF UNLOCKED!

Howard Tayler Retrospective Sketch Book PDF. We've often been told by readers that they enjoy watching the development of Howard's artistic skills as the comic strip continues. We intend to use this sketch book to examine that process and tell stories about how it all happened. The PDF will be at least 32 pages and will include sketches and art from Howard's last 18 years of drawing. It will feature a mix of strip art, sketches, margin art, and art that has never before been publicly available. This PDF will be given to all backers at 2 book PDF level and above. 

$125,000 R&D UNLOCKED!

If we reach this goal, we'll have created enough financial space that Howard can devote some time  to work on something a little different: pulp detective fiction in the Schlock Mercenary universe, featuring some characters we haven't seen since Sergeant Schlock helped them escape the authorities on Mars.  

Shafter's Shifters and the Dragons of Damaxuri  would be prose, probably in the 40,000 to 60,000 word range. Think  "Doc Savage" meets "Dirk Gently," with amorphs. 

We aren't promising this book as an add-on for this project. We're promising that if we hit this stretch goal we'll MAKE this book, and either e-publish or Kickstart it (or both) sometime in the next 12 months.

Pledging for Add-Ons

An "Add-on" is additional merchandise that you can purchase after the Kickstarter closes to add to your package. We'll be  using Backerkit to manage surveys, collecting address, and allow add-on ordering. About two weeks after funding closes, you'll get an email from Backerkit to allow all of this. In Backerkit you can purchase additional items that aren't automatically included in your pledge. You don't have to wait, though! If you increase your  pledge to cover the cost of add-ons while the project is still running, you  help us reach our stretch goals more quickly. 

Example: You've pledged for $40 to get both books, but  you also want three coins. Just increase your pledge by the cost of the  coins ($40 + $30 = $70). When the project closes, you'll be sent a survey which will show you how much you pledged, and which will allow you to specify exactly what you want  your additional pledge money spent on. Please see the shipping section to learn about additional shipping costs for add-ons.

All previously published Schlock Mercenary books will be available as add-ons. Here are the prices on previous Schlock Mercenary books:

Shipping

There is a fixed shipping cost per pledge level based on your location and pledge level. This is handled automatically by Kickstarter's system. If you are not adding anything to your order, you do not need to look at this chart. It is only meant as a help for people who are trying to increase their pledges to account for add ons. Add ons of physical items will have additional shipping costs, particularly for international backers. Adding in your expected shipping cost to your pledge can also help us reach stretch goals. You can calculate your add-on shipping costs using this chart. Please note these are actual costs for shipping items internationally. In some cases we are losing money by setting these price points.

Timeline

This Kickstarter's funding period  closes on Friday November 9. There is a two week waiting period until the  project's funds are released to us. Surveys will go out then. We will send the books off to print as soon as we hit the funding goal, but production on coins or other add on items will wait until we have funds in hand and surveys answered. 

We're really excited to run this Kickstarter for you. Thank you for your support.

Risks and challenges

The last time we ran a book Kickstarter there were a few "odds and ends" to finish up before sending the book to print. Due to creative schedule conflicts, those odds and ends dragged out for several months longer than we had intended. This time absolutely everything is done. The files are in the hands of the printer being checked over. As soon as the project hits funded, we will give the okay to print.

The new challenge with this project is that it is the first time we're releasing two books at once. The logistics of scheduling simultaneous sketch editions and shippings may surprise us. We have built in extra space in the delivery schedule to account for this.

For everything else, we've run Kickstarters before, we've shipped books before, while every project brings unexpected surprises, we have lots of practice adapting to those surprises and delivering products to customers in ways that make them happy they supported us.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1.00

    Just Watching

    You want to support and watch the project.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    11 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 3 or more About US$ 3

    Short Stories Only

    You get the PDF/ebook/mobi of AN HONEST DEATH AND OTHER STORIES, by Howard Tayler. Note that this pledge level is for digital delivery ONLY, and cannot have physical items (coins, physical books) added to it.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    39 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    Sketch Book only

    You get the PDF of the HOWARD TAYLER RETROSPECTIVE SKETCH BOOK. Note that this pledge level is for digital delivery ONLY, and cannot have physical items (coins, physical books) added to it.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    1 PDF book

    You get a PDF of one of the two Schlock books, your choice. This pledge level is not able to add on physical rewards. To get physical rewards, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Coins Only

    You get one coin as part of your pledge, but you can add on as many coins as you wish. Both the coins from this Kickstarter and coins from the Schlock Mercenary store will be available. This pledge level will not allow add ons of books. If you want print books please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    49 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    2 PDF books

    You get PDF copies of both Schlock books. This pledge level is not able to add on physical rewards. To get physical rewards, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    102 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    1 Book

    You get a physical copy of one of the two Schlock books mailed to you. Your choice. You get a PDF copy of that same book. You'll also be able to add on items in Backerkit later. This pledge level can not add on sketched books.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    6 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    2 PDF books and Coins

    You get PDFs of both books, any stretch goal PDFs, and the option to purchase add on PDFs. You get one coin as part of your pledge, but you can add on as many coins as you wish. Both the coins from this Kickstarter and coins from the Schlock Mercenary store will be available. This pledge level will not allow add ons of books. If you want printed books please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    67 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    1 Book Sketched (Batch 1)

    You get one of the two Schlock books sketched, your choice of book and sketch. You get a PDF copy of the same book. You will have the option to add on items, including additional books in the backerkit after funding closes. You will not be able to add additional sketched books, if you want more than one sketched book, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    2 Books

    You get physical copies of both books mailed to you. You get PDF copies of both books. You will also be able to add on items in Backerkit after the funding closes. You will not be able to add on sketched books. If you want sketched books, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    593 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2 Books Sketched (Batch 1)

    You get sketched and numbered copies of both Schlock books. You get PDF copies of both books. You will have the option to add on items in Backerkit after funding closes. Because your order is in batch 1, it will be processed before the other sketched batches. If you want more than 2 Sketched books, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 200 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  12. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2 Books + Additional sketched books

    You get: sketched copies of both books, PDF copies of both books, and in the backerkit after funding closes, you will be able to add on additional sketched books and other items to your order. Additional shipping charges will apply for adding books to international orders.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 77 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  13. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2 Books Sketched (Batch 2)

    You get sketched and numbered copies of both Schlock books. You get PDF copies of both books. You will have the option to add on items in Backerkit after funding closes. Because your order is in batch 2, it will be processed after batch 1, but before other sketched batches. If you want more than 2 Sketched books, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 400 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  14. Select this reward

    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2 Books Sketched (Batch 3)

    You get sketched and numbered copies of both Schlock books. You get PDF copies of both books. You will have the option to add on items in Backerkit after funding closes. Because your order is in batch 3, it will be processed after other sketched batches. If you want more than 2 Sketched books, please select a different pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 91 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  15. Select this reward

    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    2 Books + Additional Sketched books (2)

    You get: sketched copies of both books, PDF copies of both books, and in the backerkit after funding closes, you will be able to purchase additional sketched copies of Broken Wind and Delegates & Delegation, as well as any other add on items you may want. Additional shipping charges will apply for adding books to international orders. (This pledge level is for those who want gift sketched books, combine orders to save on shipping, or just have additional sketches for their collection.)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 28 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (24 days)