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AU$ 29,981
pledged of AU$ 7,600pledged of AU$ 7,600 goal
490
backers
4days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, October 19 2019 9:47 PM UTC +00:00.

The Sierra Adventure - The Story of Sierra On-Line

"The Sierra Adventure" is a non-fiction book about the early giant of computer gaming, Sierra On-Line.

The Sierra Adventure - The Story of Sierra On-Line

"The Sierra Adventure" is a non-fiction book about the early giant of computer gaming, Sierra On-Line.

AU$ 29,981
pledged of AU$ 7,600pledged of AU$ 7,600 goal
490
backers
4days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, October 19 2019 9:47 PM UTC +00:00.

About

Thanks so much for funding this book! It's something I've been excited about for years and I'm so grateful for the opportunity to get this professionally edited and printed. Sierra has such a great story and I'm sure you'll enjoy reading more about them and hopefully hearing some new things you didn't know before!

I've wanted to keep this campaign simple from the start and I intend to only do this single stretch goal because I think it will add to the book and experience. What made Sierra awesome to so many of us was the fact we felt like part of the Sierra family and still do, as evidenced by the huge communities out there still talking about these games they made decades ago. So, the stretch goal, if we reach $22,000 AUD is to write an epilogue (probably between 6000 and 10000 words) about you, the fans! Your experiences of Sierra, whether you visited them for one of their famous tours, or you remember playing Leisure Suit Larry when your parents weren't watching. What Sierra meant to you back when you first played their games, and why you're still a fan today and what they still mean to you. I believe this will be an awesome way to close out the book! 

So that's the stretch goal. With that, there's a couple of new tiers of rewards to check out. One of which is directly related to that stretch goal.

Thanks once again for turning this into a reality!

Shawn

About five years ago I started looking for a book to read about Sierra On-Line, a computer game company whose output of games inspired me in so many ways. I wasn't able to find any single book. There's a fair bit of information out there about Sierra, but mostly from interviews and articles written over the years, usually by a third party who saw things from the outside, and none of them told the whole story. "If I can't find a book, why not write it myself?" It seemed like the logical thing. I do have a degree in journalism, why not put that to use? Plus, it couldn't be THAT hard to write a book could it?

It turns out that it was a rather large challenge, but one that I feel was worth the effort!

Of course, over the time I took to research and interview people, what I had imagined in my mind took many twists and turns. I found out some amazingly exciting stories I had never even dreamed would have happened. One of my favourite moments was when I gave an early draft to Josh Mandel (Freddy Pharkas, Space Quest 6, and so much more!) and he wrote back and said he hadn't even heard of some of these stories and he lived those times!

tl:dr - I wanted to read the book and I couldn't find one. So I wrote it.

It's hard to list them all but they include (and are certainly not limited to):

  • Al Lowe (Designer of Leisure Suit Larry)
  • Mark Crowe (Designer of Space Quest)
  • Lori and Corey Cole (Designers of Quest for Glory)
  • Josh Mandel (Designer and Producer)
  • Marcia Bale (Designer of Shivers)
  • John Williams (Marketing Director / Employee #3)
  • Guruka Singh Khalsa (Executive Producer)
  • Marc Hudgins (Art Director)
  • Mark Seibert (Lead Musician, Producer, and Designer)
  • Bill Davis (Creative Director)

There's so many other people I've chatted to as well and I've tried to talk with enough people from different areas of the company in order to tell an accurate and well rounded story. Most of the interviews I conducted via Skype although I did conduct a couple over email for a variety of reasons.

There are some people I would have loved to chat to but couldn't. Some people simply said they'd moved on in life and didn't want to revisit those times, and I completely respect that. Some didn't respond to my requests, and that's fine too. I did have one particular interview lined up but, sadly, he passed away before we could chat in any great depth. I've also talked to some other people in the adventure game industry, and the gaming industry as a whole, and they've added some perspective to the legacy that Sierra left.

Simply put, I want to raise enough money to finish this book to a professional standard. Professional editing costs money, but I want the book to look and read well so I feel this is really essential to raise funds for. Jack Allin, editor of the best adventure game website magazine out there "Adventure Gamers" for over 15 years as well as the English language localization editor for popular titles like Edna & Harvey: The Breakout, Detective Gallo and The Wardrobe, has agreed to edit the manuscript. He will bring not only his professionalism in editing and writing, but also a great knowledge of Sierra games which will obviously be an immense help!

Additionally, Bruce Brenneise - a brilliant artist and avid Sierra fan (check out his amazing portfolio of work at www.brucebrenneise.com) has agreed to design a cover that will make the book really stand out!

There are also design costs for layout of the three editions (eBook, Paperback, and Hard Cover) as well as Kickstarter fees and charges.

Here's a cool chart that outlines how the funding will be spent.

Rewards are always the most challenging aspect of Kickstarters so I've tried to keep things simple enough that I'll be able to get these out ASAP. The rewards, quite simply, are copies of the book, with the special tier of autographed copies by Lori and Corey Cole. 

Autographed copies are not signed on the actual book itself. The cost is way too prohibitive for me to get the books to the Coles in California, back to myself in Australia, and then forward them on to backers. There's also way too many areas that process could fall apart in so instead the Coles will be autographing a unique boiler-plate sticker that I will then attach to the inside front page. The sticker is unique and numbered (these are strictly limited to 40 autographed copies). 

Here's the template we'll be using, based on the classic early Sierra adventures that used their AGI engine (King's Quest 1-3, Space Quest 1-2, Leisure Suit Larry 1 etc).

Hardcover Specifications

  • 9" x 6" size with a dust-jacket
  • Cream interior paper with black and white interior ink
  • White exterior paper with full-colour ink

Paperback Specifications

  • 9" x 6" size
  • Cream interior paper with black and white interior ink 
  • White exterior paper with full-colour exterior ink

Thanks for taking the time to read all the way down to the bottom of this Kickstarter pitch! I really appreciate your time and I really hope you can support this project.

A special thanks to a couple of people who have helped with this campaign. James Broom who put the pitch video together for me, Steven Alexander who helped out with the reward tiers and designed the autograph sticker for the book, to Lori and Corey Cole for their support and for autographing copies, and finally, to Josh Mandel for supporting the book and helping out with promoting the project. You all, and everyone else involved, rock.

Risks and challenges

There's not too many risks associated with this project.

The biggest risk I forsee is things taking longer than expected. The book is already written so I'm just going to be waiting on the editor finalising the text, a couple of interviewees who are reading the book and sending notes, and then the printing time. I'm using a print-on-demand service for physical publication and they'll post directly to backers. In short, there no middle person handling the books (saving time and potential errors).

Rewards are, as always, the biggest concern with any Kickstarter project and I've designed this one specifically to minimise as many potential issues as possible.

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  1. Make a pledge without a reward

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    Special Thanks

    Donate to help us create a great book! The only reward at this level is my love and thanks.

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    eBook

    Get yourself a copy of The Sierra Adventure in ePub format. Great to read on those long trips, or when you're laying in bed and can't be assed switching on the light.

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    Paperback

    The Sierra Adventure in paperback! If you love that "real" book feeling but also want to be able to easily carry it with you, this is for you!

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    Hardcover

    Not just a great read, but this Hard Cover (with dust jacket) edition will look great on your gaming shelf, book shelf, or wherever you display your books in order to make yourself look really intelligent.

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    Pledge AU$ 100 or more About US$ 68

    One of Each - Hard Cover and Paperback

    Get a copy of The Sierra Adventure in both the Hard Cover and Paperback versions. This also includes a copy of the electronic version.

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    Pledge AU$ 100 or more About US$ 68

    Autographed Hard Cover

    A limited reward of only 20 copies, each autographed by Lori and Corey Cole, creators of the amazing Quest for Glory series and more at Sierra, as well as the recently released Hero-U and the upcoming Hero-U Summer Daze.

    Each autograph is on a special bookplate (see the picture in the main listing for what it looks like) and will be hand signed by both the Coles and the book Author.

    Due to space requirements these aren't personalised by the Coles, but I'm happy to personalise a message from myself (the author).

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    Josh Mandel Autographed Hard Cover

    A limited reward of only 20 copies, each autographed by Josh Mandel, designer of the amazing Freddy Pharkas Frontier Pharmacist, and Space Quest 6 for Sierra (as well as the voice of King Graham in King's Quest V) as well as the brilliant and funny Callahan's Crosstime Saloon (Legend Entertainment).

    Each autograph is on a special bookplate (see the picture in the main listing for what it looks like) and will be hand signed by both Josh and the book Author.

    Due to space requirements these aren't personalised by Josh, but I'm happy to personalise a message from myself (the author).

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    Epilogue - What Sierra Means to Me

    Be involved in the book itself! It's said a lot that the fans make any creative effort whether that be books, TV, movies, or computer games. That's true in the case of Sierra too. You might not have worked for Sierra, but their games still meant a lot to you so get your chance to have your story recorded in The Sierra Adventure as part of this specially written epilogue. I will chat with you (generally via Skype or similar), record out interview, and write your story into this epilogue. You'll get a copy of the epilogue before printing so you can review it.

    You will also receive a copy of the hard cover book as part of this reward (and an electronic copy).

    NOTES: This reward is only applicable if we reach the stretch goal. If we don't reach the stretch goal, you will still get a copy of the hard cover book and a special mention as a super backer on the Kickstarter dedication page in the book. I reserve the right to not print your story if it's vulgar or otherwise not appropriate.

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