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My YA novel  Becoming Death is a tale of family secrets, falling in love and questioning your destiny.
My YA novel Becoming Death is a tale of family secrets, falling in love and questioning your destiny.
51 backers pledged £1,297 to help bring this project to life.

About

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£1,297

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Make my dreams come true by helping me publish my debut novel in both print and digital formats.

What is Becoming Death?

Started as an Nanowrimo novel in 2010, Becoming Death is a tale of family secrets, falling in love and questioning your destiny, told against a supernatural background. The novel is currently at 53,000 words; but I am tweaking the last few scenes and hope to get it up to 55,000.

Ever since her father's demise, Madison Clark knew death had her number. After losing her job when her boss freezes solid in a walk in freezer, she is ushered into the cryptic family business. Little does she know her family is hiding a dark secret; they are grim reapers, custodians of souls on their journey to the beyond. Madison expects her historic legacy to have benefits beyond immortality. What she doesn't expect is to still be struggling for cash while reaping souls on the side.

As if being Death's minion wasn't strenuous enough, Madison finds herself back at school with her worst enemy studying the ancient rules, methods and paperwork of her vocation. In a cascade of life changes: her best friend admits he’s in love with her and she starts a new job as a professional mourner, but she can’t help thinking her family might have other secrets.

Just when things are finally starting to feel normal again Death throws her a curveball: her next victim is her best friend. Madison must find a way to overcome the strict guidelines of being a grim reaper in order to save his life.

My main character:

Madison Clark is fangirl trying to navigate the pitfalls of being an adult. She reads comics, writes fanfiction and ships her OTP. Unfortunately, the life she was cruising through hits a speed bump when she finds out she is destined to become a grim reaper.

Who am I?

I am an American that lives in England's first UNESCO city of literature. I currently work in the busiest library in England as well as being a teacher in creative writing, ICT skills and English. Earlier this year, I was longlisted for the Nottingham Writers' Club's 2014 National short story competition, shortlisted for the Ideatap Inspires competition and a featured poet at the Norwich City of Stories launch event. I also write fan fiction under the name lonegungal17. 

I volunteer as a municipal liaison for National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo), through this project I have wrote a first draft of a new novel every November for the past ten years. I feel my involvement in this project has created a supportive environment for writers in Norfolk. While this has been a rewarding experience encouraging others to build their skills as writers, I believe is now my time to nurture my own dreams.

In my hometown of Bay City Michigan, I grew up visiting the library daily and reading everything I could get my hands. I decided I wanted to be an author when I was twelve, since then I have been trying to make that goal a reality. Through Nanowrimo, I have written numerous books but Becoming Death was the first book that stood out to me and made me want to edit it to completion.

Why Kickstarter?

As a part-time teacher, I earn far less than the average income in Britain. I love the work I do but it doesn't allow for extra expensive projects like publishing books. I desperately want to get Becoming Death out into the world, where people can read it and maybe write some fan fiction about Madison and Aaron. I see Kickstarter as a great place to build an audience, earn the money for my debut novel and make some new friends.

In order to produce a professional book these are the services I will need to pay for:

Editing: I may be an English teacher but I only have a limited knowledge of how to edit a book for publication. Thus, I will need to hire a professional. Cost: £350.

Cover Design: The most important part of selling a book is having a good cover. I was lucky enough to already purchase the rights to use my cover image from photographer Rene de Ruijter. I will need to spend additonal funds to have covers designed around this image for both the paperback and ebook. Cost: £450.

Printed Copies and Shipping Costs: I will need to pay for the printing and international shipping costs of all books sold as rewards.Cost: £300

Other Rewards: I will need to pay for materials and additional fees to supply some of my rewards. Cost: £150.

Fees for Kickstarter and Amazon. Cost: £150.

My funding goal for Kickstarter should cover about 90% of these costs the rest will come out of my own pocket. Any additional money earned by this project will go towards my stretch goals.

Stretch Goals:

Book Layout: I will need the insides of the paperback and ebook laid out to a good standard. Cost: £350.

Donation Copies for Libraries: As someone who has always loved libraries, I would like to donate a signed paperback copy to the current library I work for in Norwich, UK as well as my hometown library in  Bay City, Michigan. Cost: £50.

Marketing: I would like to use the money towards marketing my book. Ideally, I'd like to buy some advertsing online, send some copies to book reviewers and create a website. Cost: £500.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read about my project. Remember you can bid early, Kickstarter doesn't take a penny until the last day of the campaign and only if I reach my funding goal.

You can read the first chapter of Becoming Death here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Melissa-Brown-author/515818468469866 

Reward necklace
Reward necklace

Risks and challenges

The book is finished and ready to be edited. It has already been to beta readers who helped me to improve it to the standard it is today. I have never self-published a book before but have spent the last few months researching for this project. I have a good support network to help me through any pitfalls that might arise. I have given myself a year to get all the tasks for the project finished, so there should be few delays.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.57

    Dream Makers: A shout out to you on the social media platform of your choice: Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr. Your name listed as a backer inside Becoming Death and my thanks for helping my lifelong dream come true.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £5 or more About $8

    Postcard: Receive a custom postcard with the book cover on it, with a personal thank you message from me. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    5 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £8 or more About $13

    E-bookers: An e-book copy of Becoming Death before the official launch date. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    9 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £8 or more About $13

    Fanficton Reward Level 1: I will write an over 1000 word fanfic about your OTP and the situation of your choice. Rating up to pg13. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £12 or more About $19

    Fanficton Reward Level 2: I will write an over 2500 word fanfic about your OTP and the situation of your choice. Rating up to pg13. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    Limited 2 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $31

    Traditionalists: A signed paperback copy of Becoming Death before the official launch date.Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    6 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $31

    Library Lovers: A paperback copy of Becoming Death will be donated to the library of your choice. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    1 backer
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £24 or more About $38

    Fanficton Reward Level 3: I will write an over 5000 word fanfic about your OTP and the situation of your choice. Rating up to pg13. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    Limited 1 backer
    £
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £27 or more About $42

    Best of Both: Both a signed a paperback and e-book copy of Becoming Death before the official launch date. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    3 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $47

    Something Shiny: A beautiful handmade necklace inspired by Madison's choosing day necklace made by Nerdy Robot. Plus everything in the reward #1.

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge £35 or more About $55

    Shiny E-Readers: A beautiful handmade necklace inspired by Madison's choosing day necklace made by Nerdy Robot. Plus an e-book copy of Becoming Death and everything in the reward #1.

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    1 backer
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge £40 or more About $63

    First Draft Course: A half day creative writing course held in Norwich on how to write a first draft of a novel. Plus you will receive an e-book or a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death at the event and everything in the reward #1.

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge £45 or more About $71

    Shiny Readers: A beautiful handmade necklace inspired by Madison's choosing day necklace made by Nerdy Robot. Plus a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death and everything in the reward #1.

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    1 backer
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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge £50 or more About $78

    Online Advice: I will critique up to 7000 words of a short story, fanfic or novel. Plus you will receive an e-book copy of Becoming Death; and everything in the reward #1.

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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge £75 or more About $118

    Private Advice: A private 2 hour writing advice session either in person in Norwich, on Skype or on Facetime. Plus a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death with a personal message inside and everything in the reward #1.

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  16. Select this reward

    Pledge £90 or more About $141

    Be the Victim: I will name one of Madison's victims after you. Plus a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death with a personal message inside and everything in the reward #1.

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  17. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £90 or more About $141

    Be a Grim Reaper: I will name one of grim reapers in the book after you. Plus a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death with a personal message inside and everything in the reward #1.

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    Reward no longer available 1 backer
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  18. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £140 or more About $219

    Die in my Book: I will create a brand new victim for Madison to kill based on you. They will have your name, look like you and you can suggest how they die. Plus a signed paperback copy of Becoming Death with a personal message inside, an e-book version and everything in the reward #1.

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    Reward no longer available 1 backer
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  19. Select this reward

    Pledge £175 or more About $274

    Dinner: I will take you out to dinner in Norwich, UK. Transport to Norwich is up to you. During dinner, we can discuss writing, Becoming Death or fandoms. You will also received a signed copy Becoming Death with a personal message inside, an e-book version and everything in the reward #1.

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Funding period

- (31 days)