Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
A story of passion, conflict and love, set in the vivid Dreamkeepers universe. Are you brave enough to discover your world?
A story of passion, conflict and love, set in the vivid Dreamkeepers universe. Are you brave enough to discover your world?
484 backers pledged $32,309 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

The Wayward Astronomer - A Dreamkeepers Story project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

$32,309

484

What do you fight for?

For your family? For love? For freedom? If you could choose only one... which would it be?

Front cover - Concept art by David Lillie
Front cover - Concept art by David Lillie

The Wayward Astronomer is a science fiction / adventure novel set in the vivid and imaginative Dreamkeepers universe (www.dreamkeeperscomic.com). Normally depicted though critically acclaimed graphic novels and a companion webcomic, The Wayward Astronomer is the first written novel to expand upon the Dreamkeepers saga. It features a brand new cast of characters, a new story, and a new enemy lurking in the shadows of Anduruna. 

Hal Adhil - Artwork by David Lillie
Hal Adhil - Artwork by David Lillie

Our hero is a young astronomer, Hal Adhil. He spends his evenings watching the sky high up in the Starfall Mountains with his friend and fellow astronomer, Miri. Here, far away from watchful eyes, he can indulge in using his unique but forbidden power: the ability to see all forms of light. Nestled safely in the remote observatory, the troubles of the city and his past life are far from sight and even farther from mind, but no calamity can be ignored forever. 

When a meteorite crashes nearby, Hal and Miri set out to find it. Unfortunately, what they go out looking for, and what they find, are two very different things. After a chilly encounter turns violent, Hal is left for dead and abandoned. He is unwillingly thrust into a dark conspiracy that threatens the life of everyone in Anduruna, where the difference between friend and enemy is impossible to see. He has no choice left but to fight to reclaim the things he lost, and solve the mystery of the meteor... before time runs out. 

Family, Freedom, or Love? Which one would you choose?

Miri Rodgers - Artwork by David Lillie
Miri Rodgers - Artwork by David Lillie

About the project

Hi everyone, Geoff here, author of The Wayward Astronomer. It's with great excitement that I welcome you to the Kickstarter page for my first published novel, and the first written novel for the Dreamkeepers Saga. I have been working on this book for 5 years now, and the time has finally come to make it a reality. 

The Wayward Astronomer is being self-published by my company Corvus Publishing LLC in collaboration with Vivid Independent Publishing. We are targeting retail-level distribution, not print-on-demand. What this means is we need to raise enough money to print enough books for retail distribution to be economical, hence the Kickstarter. If this project is successful, this book, and the DreamKeepers universe, will finally be available through traditional bookstores, such as Barnes and Noble. Books will be available online as well, through Amazon and other sites. The book is planned to release as a 6" x 9" hardcover novel and e-book. 

The Wayward Astronomer is unique, just like the DreamKeepers Universe. It's not an action story. It's not a love story. It's a life story. It's a story that cuts down to the core of who we are, what we fear, and what we fight for. Ultimately, it gives us a glimpse of what life is, with all of its beauty, all of its brutality, and all of its mysterious wonder, rolled into one single package.

I don't expect you to take my word for it. I'm the author of the story, and I'm probably not the most impartial. Instead, please listen to what some of my beta readers on deviantArt had to say.

Testimonials

On the climax:

"For a lingered moment, I sat still: speechless. You've taken my words, replacing them with emotions, philosophies, questions, and hopes. Quite a challenge to put my thoughts into feedback; a challenge I am willing to accept. Strong. That is the word to use. Strong emotions: enraging and gut-wrenching. Strong characters: imperfect and beautiful. Strong moments: pure and real. The climax. Fantastic chapter... It's well written, powerful, and wonderful. There's a sense of full circle here, which I love. (I do not use that four letter L word lightly.) By far, this is the best chapter you have kindly shared with us. Thank you." -LunarOutcast

On the conclusion:

"This really was a special story to read, I'll tell you... that if you intended for people to read this story and take a lesson or a new appreciation from it, then you've succeeded. It really is great, every letter radiates with passion, it's a passion I really hope to replicate in something I do one day. Everything is extremely well written and every image and scene is always projected with perfect clarity. The story overall is fantastic, very well organised and very well paced. Really this is something I would have paid to read, it's a privilege to have free access to something this good. It's a shame it had to end really, but at the same time, this was the perfect way to end it. I really look forward to your future projects... I'll view and enjoy every single one." -watcherguy4

You don't need to be a fan of the Dreamkeepers universe to enjoy this story, but you might become a fan after you're done reading it! The events depicted in TWA are independent and parallel to the main story arc of the Dreamkeepers graphic novel saga. David Lillie, the creator of Dreamkeepers, has lent his hand to illustrate the cover and select parts of the interior, giving the book a depth of artistic life that captures the imagination just like the comic. If we hit some more expensive stretch goals, we may even be able to make the book fully illustrated, which for fans of David's art style will be a real treat. 

Back cover - Concept art by David Lillie
Back cover - Concept art by David Lillie

Where does the money go?

The funding goal for this book is $18,000. These funds will be used to pay for the following items:

  • Professional 3rd Party editing of the manuscript
  • Professional formatting of the book for hardcover printing
  • Professional formatting of the book for e-readers
  • Production of a large print run of harcover books for retail distribution
  • Warehousing and shipping fees of 1st edition print run
  • Production of Kickstarter rewards, including art prints, posters, and any other stretch goal merchandise
  • Payment to David Lillie for producing the artwork featured in the book and the campaign
  • Basic marketing efforts for the book launch

No funds from the kickstarter are used to pay salaries or bonuses for any individuals of Corvus Publishing LLC or Vivid Independent Publishing LLC.

If we surpass the initial goal, it will allow for a lot more flexibility in production, including more artwork, larger print runs, more aggressive marketing, and more competitive retail pricing. 

Backer Rewards

Art print available to Tier #4 backers and up
Art print available to Tier #4 backers and up
24" x 36" poster available to Tier #5 backers and up
24" x 36" poster available to Tier #5 backers and up
Metal art print available to backers of Tier #7 and up
Metal art print available to backers of Tier #7 and up

Of course, no Kickstarter campaign is complete without stretch goals, so let's get to it! 

Stretch Goal 1: $20,000 - Custom Bookmarks! {UNLOCKED!}

If we hit $20K in total funding, every backer will receive a set of awesome Wayward Astronomer bookmarks in addition to the rewards offered by their tier. The bookmarks are designed by David Lillie, creator of the original Dreamkeepers graphic novels. Enjoy the sneak peek of this first stretch goal from the start!

Stretch Goal 2: $22,000 - TWA Buttons! {UNLOCKED!}

If we hit $22K in total funding, every backer will be able to purchase a set of metal pin-on buttons, featuring the cast and crew of The Wayward Astronomer, but all backers of Tier #3 or higher will receive these buttons free of charge! Additional button sets can be added to your pledge a-la-carte for $5, shipping included. 

Here is the artwork that will be used to create the buttons, and check out Update #2 to see the physical items in action!

Stretch Goal 3: $25,000 - Extra Print! {UNLOCKED!}

If we hit $25K in total funding, David Lillie will produce a second 8.5" x 11" art print that will be included free of charge for all backers of Tier #4 or higher. Double the art, double the fun! (PREVIEW COMING SOON)

Stretch Goal 4: $30,000 - Extra Poster!

If we hit $30K in total funding, David Lillie will produce a second 24" x 36" epic poster of awesomeness. Not just cover artwork, this will be an entirely new and unique design, and only available through this Kickstarter project! The second poster will be included free of charge for all backers of Tier #5 or higher. (PREVIEW CURRENTLY LOCKED)

Stretch Goal 5: $40,000 - Fully Illustrated Interior!

This is where it gets exciting folks! If we raise $40K, we will be able to invest the extra time and attention into giving The Wayward Astronomer full interior illustrations. What that means is a detailed full page illustration for every chapter of the story (25 in total), all done by David Lillie himself! If we hit this goal, it may increase production time by a little bit while we get the extra illustrations done, but trust me, it will be worth it! (PREVIEW CURRENTLY LOCKED)

Stretch Goal 6: $50,000 - Hal and Miri Plushies!

Take your favorite protagonists home with you as adorable and high quality plushies! Every backer of Tier #5 will receive a plush toy of either Hal or Miri (your choice). Every backer of Tier #6 or higher will receive both! (PREVIEW CURRENTLY LOCKED)

Stretch Goal 7: $60,000 - Full Color Illustrations!

If we manage to raise $60K, we will really have the money to invest in this book as not just a novel, but a work of art. We will switch over from a traditional black and white interior to a full color novel worthy of the Dreamkeepers name! This sort of printing doesn't come cheap, but with this much money, we can afford to take the leap. You won't be disappointed with the results. (PREVIEW CURRENTLY LOCKED)

Stretch Goal 7: $80,000 - Audio book!

Why read when someone can read to you? At $80K, not only will we have a full color hardcover masterpiece, but we will be able to turn the novel into an audio book as well! I will be able to hire professional voice acting and recording talent to make the Wayward Astronomer a top shelf audio book, free of charge to all backers. Depending on the production timeline, this may release some time after the published novel. 

Stretch Goal 8: $100,000 - !?!?!?!?!?!

I don't know how many banks we would need to rob to pull this off, but if we hit $100K in total backing, the sky is the limit. We'll have a vote to decide what to do. It could be more cool merchandise, a translation of the book into other languages, or production of a prequel miniseries! Maybe it means Dreamkeepers can go on tour to all the major conventions like San Diego and New York Comic Con and really become a larger presence! Whatever we choose, it will be worthy of the community that helped this project achieve such lofty heights. 

If you have questions about any of the rewards or stretch goals, don't hesitate to ask!

About the Author

Geoffrey Thomas is a 28 year old author, entrepreneur, and engineer. His day job is working as an Aerospace Engineer for XCOR Aerospace in Midland, Texas. His professional expertise lies in experimental rocket engine design, build, and test. Geoffrey graduated Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2010 with a Bachelor's Degree in Aerospace Engineering. The Wayward Astronomer will be his first published work, but he also writes about his life and random thoughts at the blog Adventures of Geo. He has been a fan and community leader of the Dreamkeepers graphic novel series since 2011. 

Geoff's other hobbies include motorcycle riding, auto racing, and learning Japanese. For fun, he sometimes composes short bios in the 3rd person.

Special Thanks and Acknowledgements

I want to give special thanks to the different artists who produced artwork for the deviantart-hosted chapters of my story and to David and Liz Lillie for helping this project reach this stage. If you like the artwork or music featured in the video, please check out their other work in the links below:

Ben Martinez - http://theartoftwi.blogspot.com/

Sw1tchbl4de - http://sw1tchbl4de.deviantart.com

Caitlin Baner - http://byakurai1313.deviantart.com

Elson Wong - http://darkspeeds.deviantart.com

Nikolas Albrecht (Composer) - https://www.cdbaby.com/cd/nikolasalbrecht

Risks and challenges

This is my first Kickstarter project and the first book I've ever published. While I have a lot of support from people who have been there and done that, problems could arise that haven't been anticipated.

The book is completely written, but it still needs to go through a round of professional editing and get properly formatted for printing before books can get into my hands. Some of the funds from this Kickstarter will be used to pay for those services before the print run commences. I have an editor and a printer already lined up, but if the pre-production work takes longer than anticipated, it will delay the book's delivery date.

It is important to note that while I am working with outside editors, this book is self-published. In the end it only needs the approval of one person: me. I don't need to get it greenlit by some publishing house, I just need to turn the manuscript into a product ready for production.

Once the book is printed, most of the inventory will end up in traditional distribution channels, and a smaller quantity will be in my possession for mailing to backers. Shipments could get lost in the mail. My house could burn down. Paper-cut litigation could doom the entire operation. It's a crazy world out there, and on rare occasions, bad things could happen.

The good news is that I am working very closely with David Lillie on this project, and he has already successfully launched and fulfilled two previous Kickstarter campaigns, so no one is flying completely blind.

Ultimately, I want everyone to know that sharing this book with the world is my dream. Rest assured that I will do everything I can to handle any issues as soon as they come up, so I can get this book into your hands as soon as possible. I didn't reach this stage just to let roadblocks bring an end to things, and I will fight tooth and nail to work through any complications if they arise.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    An electronic version of The Wayward Astronomer, in the e-reader format of your choice.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    80 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 $20 or more About $20

    An unsigned hardcover copy of The Wayward Astronomer, delivered right to your doorstep, anywhere in the world.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    108 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 $30 or more About $30

    A signed hardcover copy of The Wayward Astronomer, delivered right to your doorstep, anywhere in the world. I will personalize the signature and note to the person you designate.

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

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A signed book PLUS a 8.5" x 11" art print created by David Lillie exclusively for this Kickstarter campaign.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    37 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 $80 or more About $80

    A signed hardcover copy of The Wayward Astronomer, the 8.5" x 11" art print, PLUS a gorgeous 24" x 36" poster of the original cover concept art, designed by David Lillie and signed by the author. The posters are unframed, and will ship in a round poster tube separately from the book.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    39 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 $125 or more About $125

    Everything from Tier #5, PLUS your name listed in the book as a 1st Edition backer! Your pledge will hold a special place not only in my heart, but in books sold around the world.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    39 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 $250 or more About $250

    Everything from Tier #6, PLUS, a signed 8" x 12" ALUMINUM art print featuring David Lillie's rendering of the climax of the story! I don't want to post this artwork on the public Kickstarter page, due to spoilers, but upon request I can show you what it looks like ;)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 19 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 $350 or more About $350

    Everything from the $250 Tier, PLUS one-of-a-kind ORIGINAL ARTWORK from David Lillie. Not a print - this is original lineart, signed, framed, and delivered to your door.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 9 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Everything from Tier #7, PLUS, a minor character in the story will be named after YOU. Immortalize your place in history with this exclusive tier!

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)