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3 Afrofuturism Novellas from Ytasha L. Womack
411 backers pledged $14,728 to help bring this project to life.

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$14,728

411

 WE REACHED OUR  STRETCH GOAL....AFROFUTURISM DANCE CLASSES ONLINE FOR ALL BACKERS PLUS A 1951 PLAYLIST INSPIRED BY OUR CHARACTERS' IN BRONZEVILLE!!!!

STRETCH GOAL #2 - If we get 400 backers by the end of our campaign Ytasha will do an Audiobook!!!

This Kickstarter project is a set of 3 short books about characters traversing through time in one of America's most iconic African-American communities. We explore a fantastic and speculative world, where people in the past and present are engaged in creating compelling new futures! 

SYNOPSIS: It’s 1951 in Chicago’s Bronzeville and a spaceship sighting has everyone buzzing. Bonnie, a 20something  artist/columnist with the Chicago Defender, covers a not so secret society of people who dissect speculative science theories and the realm of the paranormal. 

Bonnie’s fascinated by this world of eccentrics introduced to her by a mysterious, handsome poet named Mandalay whose freedom she envies. The society meets in the basement of a slaughterhouse. However, when a blue haired pansexual pleasure activist from the future presents the attendees with the opportunity to live in the 2020s, Bonnie must decide whether life in the Alter Destiny is real or a dangling fantasy. 

A Spaceship in Bronzeville is a project published by Mouse Books and is was written by Ytasha L. Womack.

ABOUT YTASHA

Ytasha is an author, Afrofuturist theorist, filmmaker, dance therapist and champion of the imagination. She's author of the book Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci Fi & Fantasy Culture, a Locus Awards Nonfiction Finalist. She's also author of the Rayla Universe series. as well as the nonfiction books Post Black and Beats, Rhymes and Life, What We Love and Hate About Hip Hop. She's lectured at numerous colleges and festivals all over the world. 

She is a Spring 2019 creative-in residence at Kickstarter and 2018 writer-in-residence with Emerson College in Boston. Much like Bonnie, she got her start as a journalist at The Chicago Defender. Although her families Chicago roots began in Bronzeville, she personally has not seen a spaceship there... although she's met people who claim they have. 


 EXPLORING BONNIE'S WORLD 

Chicago South-side, 1950s
Chicago South-side, 1950s

Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood was one of the great destinations for African Americans escaping hardships in the South during the first half of the 20th Century.  

Our story's protagonist, Bonnie, lives and works in Bronzeville. Esoteric ideas and new philosophies were hotly debated as people looked to create new futures in the face of new opportunities. Those who came during the Great Migration created a unique culture; a blend of the aspirations and beliefs rife with robust civic and nightlife. The Chicago Defender (where Bonnie works), is one of the leading black-owned papers and was instrumental in attracting people north. 


1951: POINT OF TRANSITION 

Musician and poet Sun Ra was  a resident of Bronzeville in the 1950's
Musician and poet Sun Ra was a resident of Bronzeville in the 1950's

It's after WWII and the African American population in Chicago has nearly quadrupled, the Red Scare is in it's early years, housing segregation is being challenged (think A Raisin in the Sun) and  the country is on the cusp of both a civil rights movement and cultural renaissance. The Regal Theater, Savoy Ballroom, and Club DeLisa were among the popular hang outs and Washington Park and the Southside Community Arts Center are hubs for the exchange of ideas. Chess and Vee-Jay Records were on the rise. Chicago's meat packing plant (where the characters meet) was at an all time high. 


Custom Slip Case for 3 Book Set
Custom Slip Case for 3 Book Set

 Mouse Books offer a convenient alternative to reading on your phone: a phone-sized book. 

Mouse Books are approachable, carefully curated, beautiful, durable, real paper books. They are small enough to go with you anywhere. They don’t ring, buzz, vibrate, need batteries, and there are no screens to break. They are ideal for people who want a break from relentlessness of the attention economy.

SPECIFICATIONS

Mouse Books are carefully crafted to optimize the reading experience in a very compact format. When you are working at a small scale, every detail matters. 

OUR FIRST LIVING AUTHOR!!!

Ytasha being a good sport during late night work session planning this campaign!
Ytasha being a good sport during late night work session planning this campaign!

Mouse Books launched by publishing  classic literature by celebrated authors like Joyce, Dostoyevsky, Austen, and Melville. All along we have been waiting for the opportunity to partner with a contemporary author on a special project. We are delighted that Ytasha agreed to work with us, and has created this set of novellas specifically for the Mouse format. 


 WORLD-CLASS PRINTER 

This is the actual Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 105 at eDOC that prints Mouse Books!
This is the actual Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 105 at eDOC that prints Mouse Books!

Mouse is obsessed with making these books extremely high-quality. We've partnered with one of the great printers in the USA, eDOC Communications from Mount Prospect, Illinois, to bring Mouse Books to life. And since our printing partner is local to our Chicago-based team, we know our quality standards are upheld during every print run.  

THANK YOUUUU!!!!

THANK YOU for making it through the whole description! We sincerely hope you pledge and help bring this project to life!!!!!!

Anything you can do to help spread the word is greatly appreciated by Ytasha and the Mouse Team :)

Risks and challenges

Mouse Books is, in our estimation, a very low-risk project. We have two major costs: printing and shipping. We have a keen understanding of both. In the last year, we have printed and shipped tens-of-thousands of books. If we hit our funding threshold we will be able to fulfill these orders in a timely manner.

Ytasha has already drafted the books and they are in the process of being edited and typeset. We have an excellent relationship with the printer and anticipate no barriers to timely delivery.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    Space in B Rotations Essay

    This essay by Ytasha Womack provides a time travelers lens into writing "A Spaceship in Bronzeville"

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    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    A Spaceship in Bronzeville

    3 Novellas in a Custom Box Set.

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    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Books + Afrofuturism Seminar

    + 3 Novellas in a Custom Box Set.
    + An invitation to a live 60 minute lecture on Afrofuturism by Ytasha with a 30 min Q&A. This lecture will be hosted online.

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    Pledge US$ 70 or more About US$ 70

    2x Books & Online Afrofuturism Seminar

    + 2 COPIES of A Spaceship in Bronzeville Box Set.
    + Two invitations to a live 60 minute lecture on Afrofuturism by Ytasha with a 30 min Q&A. This lecture will be hosted online.

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    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Author's Book Club

    + 2 COPIES of A Spaceship in Bronzeville Box Set.
    + You are invited to participate in a Kickstarter-exclusive book club with Ytasha.The club will meet three times in the Fall of 2019 and discuss one of the books at each meeting. These meetings will be hosted online.

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Funding period

- (37 days)