Meet Susannah Zane. She’s a rancher. She raises livestock.
Only thing is, her stock isn’t technically live.
The Great Zombie Plague wiped out a fair portion of civilization, and humans weren’t the only victims of its ravenous hunger. But that was years ago, and where cattle, pigs, and sheep got scarce, practical sorts found a new herd to market: the zombies themselves!
Now a crew has come out to film a new reality television series on the subject. To the viewers in the Safe Zones, it might be an eye-opener; but for Suzie and her compadres it’s just another day in the unlife.
Welcome to the Zombie Ranch.
Nearly ten years ago those words introduced our independent webcomic, Zombie Ranch. Then fast forward to four years ago, when thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign we collected our first seven chapters into a handsome trade paperback book, and now there's a print copy sitting in the Library of Congress and everything! But in honor of that accomplishment, ever since then we've been asked, "Where's Volume 2?"
Well, at the time we replied, "Hold your (zombie) horses, folks, we only just got done with Volume 1!" But now, at long last, the time has come!
This Kickstarter's goal is to collect chapters 8-15 into another ~200 page, full color softcover book. As with the first project, almost all of the content is already done and ready to go, only this time we're putting together eight issues of the comic instead of seven! We have our quotes for production already so we just once again need the money necessary to cover printing and shipping costs. And that's where y'all come in.
Now perhaps you're new to the Ranch and wondering what all this is about, and whether it would be worth jumping on board while the ride's already moving. Well, we won't deny it's a heavily serialized story that's probably best read from the beginning, but the good news is every story page we've ever done is available to read for free on our website, zombieranchcomic.com. Or if you're more comfortable with print, you can get both Volume 1 and Volume 2 as a special bundle through this very Kickstarter via our "Frugal Trader" and "Luxury Trader" tiers.
Tier Reward Examples
All right, you've got my attention. Who are you?
If you're a veteran of the previous Kickstarter, you can probably skip this part. The info is mostly the same, we're just a bit older.
If you're new, howdy! I'm Clint Wolf, the writer. My wife Dawn is the artist. If you've watched the video, you may already know that. Together we make up a little independent outfit that we eventually agreed to call Lab Reject Studios.
Dawn is a former employee of Nickelodeon and I've written in the past for publications like Games Workshop's White Dwarf Magazine, but Zombie Ranch represented our first comics offering to a wide audience. Since we began this tale of a Weird New West in October 2009 we've produced over 400 full-color pages detailing the trials and tribulations of our ranchers. We had a lot to learn, but we've persevered and gathered an international audience along the way. We've exhibited at San Diego Comic-Con, been interviewed in print and on podcast, and in general don't seem to be in danger of going away any time soon.
More than one fan has declared that they're hooked on the story even though they don't usually like zombies. We've even had someone swear her appreciation even though she said she doesn't like comics (go figure). And though I wouldn't go so far as to call it an All Ages offering, we haven't really found a need for nudity or an excess of gore and swearing to tell the tale. Approximately PG-13 by U.S. film standards, though more of a 1980s PG-13 since we don't shy entirely away from blood. Or smoking. In general I'd say if you're okay watching the movie Jaws, you should be okay with this.
THE CRITICS SPEAK
- "There's a tried and true method to telling a zombie story, so I have to appreciate a comic that not only has a new spin on the genre but tells it well... Dawn Wolf's art excels at portraying character emotions and is a critical part in the series' world building, making every piece of media or bit of tech look as good as it sounds when described." - Fanbase Press
- "The series is well-written, delves into interesting ideas about capitalism and necessity and the character design is strong and varied..." - Girls Like Comics
- "...entertaining, lively, and often unexpected. If you're into westerns or zombies or farming or just enjoy weird $%^&, you need to take a look at this comic." - Comic Related
Stretch Goal #1: $3200 - Cover Gallery!
At this level, we make the book bigger! A cover art gallery for our individual print issues #8-15 will be added to the finished product.
Stretch Goal #2: $4000 - Art Booklet!
If we reach this level of funding, everyone gets a bonus! We're going to put together an art booklet showcasing selected "extras" Dawn has drawn over the years, such as the Grunt & Groan movie posters that started as one-off sketches but eventually made their way into canon. Backers at the lower tiers will receive a digital PDF version, while Senior Ranch Hands and above will receive both the digital PDF and a print edition to accompany their Zombie Ranch book(s)!
Stretch Goal #3: $6000 - Put a Pin in It!
Now this would be an exciting tier to reach, because we're going to produce a commemorative 10 year anniversary pin! Dawn will be creating a custom design that will be made available to all backers for a nominal extra charge based on your tier level.
Risks and challenges
We've again deliberately built this project with the idea of minimal risk; if we don't get our funding, everyone walks away with no harm done save disappointment. We'll still continue as we have for ten years and counting, producing Zombie Ranch online and in small runs of single issues.
But we don't want disappointment, we want a book! And since we have every last story page of that book already produced, all that's really left is to get it printed and distributed. There are no worries about collaboration problems and there is no lofty-but-as-yet-unrealized vision. We have our content, we have our price quotes, and add to that we can now declare: we've done it once, and we can do it again!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)