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A Year Without Rent's video poster

Just how mobile does our digital lifestyle make us? Donations can still be made at Read more

Portland, ME Shorts
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pledged of $12,000 goal
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This project was successfully funded on January 7, 2011.

Just how mobile does our digital lifestyle make us? Donations can still be made at

Portland, ME Shorts
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About this project

NEW FINAL DAY PERK ($30)....A Sasquatch shirt:

"The most innovative crowfunding campaign at the moment." -- filmmaker Jake Stetler

"the coolest kickstarter campaign I've seen so far." -- producer Victoria Westcott

"A groundbreaking concept." -- Casey Ryan, The Cutting Room Floor


"A campaign we should all be supporting." -- Film Courage

"An extremely worthy campaign" -- Jon Reiss, author of Think Outside the Box Office

Featured on Filmmaker Magazine's New Year's Resolutions for Filmmakers

The Bizarro Map, featured on ($25 and up backers)

This summer, I used Kickstarter to fund Up Country, a feature-length film set in the northern wilds of Maine. We filmed Up Country in the middle of nowhere (literally...the town doesn't have a name...actually it isn't even a town), so the biggest single expense/obstacle was getting people there. The people with super-flexible schedules suddenly became ridiculously valuable, even more so if they could get themselves within shouting distance of Maine.

At the same time, there were other filmmaker friends of mine around the country working on various projects and trying to do much of the same thing, either working with what they had on hand or trying to find the budget to bring people in. I suspect this happens quite a bit. And not just in major cities. As the world gets smaller, people are finding ways to flourish in more remote locations.

So my plan is to spend a year on the road, traveling around the country and working on indie film projects. I'll explore the idea of mobility in a creative professional. Just how mobile does our digital lifestyle make us? Does it even matter where we live anymore? How can a creative professional thrive outside of NYC and LA?

As the year progresses, I'll be keeping people updated with:

+ video: a daily video diary and/or web series documenting the day to day progress. In addition, more "cinematic" vignettes, which would be less frequent (obviously).

+ photos. We'll be using the great tools at Tripline to create an interactive map where you can wander the country from the comfort of your own home. We'll geo-tag the photos and collectively they'll tell a story. A view of where we've been, if you will.

As an example, check out our backer Bizarro World on Tripline.

We'll also be partnering with the very cool folks at Shuttercal and posting a photo a day on their calendar, It's a pretty cool service. Check it out. Sign up!

+ words: I'll be writing blog posts. stories. articles. The focus of all this writing will be the filmmakers I'm working with. I want to see how these people work, what tricks they have up their sleeves, and what they're doing differently in Minnesota than they are in LA.

Then I'll take all of that and turn it into a multimedia e-book (assuming those aren't obsolete by then) that looks back at the whole experience.

We're coming to Kickstarter because, money aside, this is a project that will only be as interesting as the audience supporting it. So, we've compiled a collection of perks that we hope will keep you emotionally invested not just until the deadline, but over the life of the project. Hey, we'll even send you a birthday present. You won't have to worry about everyone forgetting your big day, Sixteen Candles style. We want to take you along. Well, not literally, unless you want to help drive. There's going to be a lot of driving.

Where will we go?
Where won't we go? Already we've got interested productions around the country (and even one in the UK), and I'd love to come help out on your film. Here's how it works: tell us about the project and, if possible, I'll come help out. Think of me as an extra set of hands. I'll hold a boom, carry grip equipment, get coffee, be an extra, whatever you need. While I'm there, I'll also be documenting your film, telling people about it and about the people working on it, essentially giving you some free publicity. All we ask is that you do what you can to keep us on the road. It's a win-win.

Email us at ayearwithoutrent [at] gmail [dot] com

But what about Up Country?

That's a good question. This should have no effect on Up Country. Editing will continue as planned. If anything, it'll make it easier to finish the film, as we'll just make Up Country one of our projects. So, part of this year will be going to Philly to do the sound mix. You'll actually, in that regard, get a better look at the film. And it should be a better film for it.

Where will this money go?

Well, if you haven't noticed, gas is expensive. So is food. And insurance. It's a tricky project to budget, as the numbers all fluctuate pretty wildly based on simple things like how far apart the projects are, geographically. By our best guess, this will get us through most of the year, if we're lucky. Our comfortable number is a shade over $20,000. But the more we bring in, the more we can do. This is a project that will be as big or as small as the audience and the indie community wants it to be, both in reach and in dollars. So if you don't have $$ to give, that's no problem. Maybe you have a couch to sleep on? Or a production to help out with? Or a skill set you can bring to the project? Even a "buy one, get one free" coupon for granola bars would be a big help.

If you're a creative professional, this project is for you and about you. It'll be as awesome as you want it to be.

Questions? Ask them in the comments!


Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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  • You selected
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    6 backers

    Good Karma. You can never have too much of that. Everyone gets this, even if they opt out.

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    24 backers

    Your name listed as a backer on the webpage. Plus, you pick a day out of the year and when that day rolls around, we’ll send you a postcard of that day’s Shuttercal photo ( What will it be?

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    54 backers

    The above. Plus, at the end of the journey, you’ll get a copy of the multimedia ebook (or, whatever other cool digital product it becomes in the end. A year is a long time in technology, you know. Ebooks could be obsolete by then.)

  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    36 backers

    The above, plus you’ll get your very own entry on our backer map. We’ll give you a creative biography and a new home somewhere in the U.S. It’s like joining the Witness Protection Program, only without all the danger of being killed by the mafia and the hassle of having to move.

  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    32 backers

    NEW FINAL DAY PERK: The above, plus...Via our friends at Dotted Line shirts, a super comfortable Sasquatch shirt, which was a cast & crew gift for my film UP COUNTRY. Super comfortable. Super hip. Be cooler than your friends.

  • You selected
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    11 backers

    The above, plus...

    “Hey ya! Your haiku / Adapted and in your hands. / On your fridge. Shake it.”

  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    27 backers

    The above, plus a Year Without Rent t-shirt, soft and comfortable and guaranteed to improve your sex life [editor note: it might not affect your sex life in any meaningful way].

  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    9 backers

    The above, plus...A DVD of Lucas McNelly’s “mysterious masterpiece” BLANC DE BLANC (, due early in 2011, and a digital download of UP COUNTRY, which is currently being edited.

  • You selected
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    12 backers

    The above, plus...A monthly download of our more cinematic videos, so that you can watch it on your iPod or iPhone or iPad or whatever else Steve Jobs conjures out of thin air.

  • You selected
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    3 backers

    The above, plus...a Birthday Present. It’s exactly what you think it is. And no, we’re not going to tell you what it’ll be. What kind of friend ruins a present?

  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    6 backers

    **NEW** The above, plus...When we swing close to your neck of the woods (assuming the Continental U.S.), we'll meet you at a local establishment of your choosing, buy you a beverage, and regale you with tales of the road. Plus, you'll be able to record a video message for the masses. You can even do it sober if you want.

  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer

    The above, plus...A grab bag. You pick a stretch of 30 days in the year. We’ll take a USPS flat rate box and, in the course of those 30 days, we’ll collect souvenirs for you along the way. Maybe a snow globe of the Grand Canyon. Or a magnet from a truck stop. Or a film festival t-shirt. Or a DVD from one of the filmmakers we work with. We’ll fill up the flat rate box and at the end of the 30 days, send it your way. Just think of how much fun you’ll have opening it.

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    The above, plus...Cinema Mad Libs! You pick a genre and a bunch of words (i.e. a noun, a verb, an adjective, etc, etc.) and we will make a short film out of it. There’s no telling where we’ll make it or who will be involved. And you’ll be the Executive Producer, so you might even get a credit on IMDb out of it.

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    0 backers Limited (6 left of 6)

    This one is more for productions. Have you ever finished filming and realized you were so busy filming that you forgot to shoot any behind-the-scenes footage or photos? Instead of just being an extra set of hands, we'll take care of that for you. You'll get first priority on scheduling. Whenever you're doing your largest continuous dates we'll shoot a bunch of stuff for your EPK or DVD extras. Then, you can do whatever you want with it. One less thing for you to worry about. (Does not include earlier rewards.)

  • You selected
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    0 backers

    The above, plus...We’ll come to you. We’ll add you to the itinerary (Continental US only), crash on your couch (or on your lawn, or wherever), and drink all your beer. We’ll also screen a film for you and as many people as you can cram into your living room.

  • You selected
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    0 backers

    The above, plus...Join the trip! Spend a week on the road with us, working on films, drinking terrible gas station coffee, the whole experience. At the end of the week, we'll send you home, tired in body, but not in soul

Funding period

- (31 days)