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An immersive story telling app: original and retold fairytales with visual art, music and narration.
An immersive story telling app: original and retold fairytales with visual art, music and narration.
An immersive story telling app: original and retold fairytales with visual art, music and narration.
253 backers pledged $9,323 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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Metalalia: Multimedia Fairytales for your tablet and phone

$9,323

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UPDATE (5/2): Come see use perform on May 3rd at Meltdown Comics in LA for Free Comic Book Day! We will be doing a live version of the Hair Woven Rope and giving out exclusive art cards from our stories. Hope to see you there! Aren't in LA? You can always stream the event live at http://www.meltcomics.com/blog/meltdown-comics-live/ 

UPDATE (4/14):

We are proud to announce that Metalalia will now also be available at launch for Android devices! Android or iOS, you can enjoy our stories no matter your platform!

What is Metalalia? 

A sneak preview of our launch story's first page

An ever evolving story telling project, Metalalia began as a way for writer Alex Nicholson and musician Pam Shaffer (that’s us!) to feel closer to each other when they found themselves in a long distance relationship from LA to the UK. He would read his stories aloud to her while she played her songs for him, as they both loved each other’s art. 

One day, they decided to combine forces and have Pam score a story that Alex had written. They also thought it would be lovely to have one of their friends make visual art to go with the story, much like an illuminated manuscript, but for the iPad and other iOS devices. Suddenly, an idea was born and the project began! 

Alex and Pam quickly discovered that the current generation of e-readers were not capable of accommodating the wide variety of media they wanted the stories to include. They realized they would need to create a new platform to host the stories. They decided to call it  Metalalia.

The first page of The Hair Woven Rope in full color

Metalalia features the talents of Alex and Pam in collaboration with a pool of brilliant musicians, designers and visual artists. It is a growing collection of re-imagined traditional fairytales alongside original stories all with their own original score, gorgeous narration, and stunning artwork. Fairytales and myths are such a vital part of our culture. We have made it our mission to craft stories that put a new spin on your old favorites and reflect the diversity of our 21st century world. Metalalia is proud to be a feminist, body-positive, LGBTQ-friendly content creator. The reading level and subject matter of our stories is suitable for readers aged 14 and up.

Character design for The Wind-up Boy

We need your financial support to create this app! Other e-book formats cannot support all the fantastic audio and visual content we are creating for you. Our experienced app developer, Adam Schwem, is creating a platform that will give you the most bang for your buck, with a unique user interface designed by animator and designer Amy Faigin. You will be able to choose which elements of the story you want to enjoy: text, art, narration, music, or a combination. The app will launch with our first story, The Hair Woven Rope, included. Two more stories will be available for purchase at launch as well. Once the project is funded and Metalalia goes live, the sky's the limit and we can bring you all the stories we can dream up!

Which stories have we written so far? 

  • The Hair Woven Rope - in which Rapunzel fashions her own escape from a floating fortress 
  • The River Girl - an original fable about the ghosts of war 
  • The Wind Up Boy - a steampunk retelling of Pinocchio in a Europe riven by conflict

These are the stories we are currently making available at launch, but we already have several more in the works!

The final version of the app will feature full color animated panels, scrolling text, fully mastered sound, and of course, our custom-built user interface.

Who is the author Alex Nicholson? 

Meet Alex. He is a charming writer of the British persuasion. Do not be fooled by his modest and quiet nature. Beyond those still waters lie a vast imagination, a voluminous vocabulary and a remarkable facility with words. His accomplishments span from running a theatre company to penning screenplays to teaching English in every corner of the globe. When he is not scrawling stories on the page, Alex can be found engaging in a vast array of delightfully nerdy pastimes and traveling in search of new inspiration for his writing.

Who is the musician Pam Shaffer?

A pocket Beethoven, Pam is the fae-touched songstress-skald whose briny brain stands at the helm of Metalalia. Los Angeles native Pam comes to the project hot off the success of her 2013 album, It Is Happening Again, with her band The Witching Hour. Her music video Remember This and an action-packed UK tour round out her recent accomplishments. After managing two successful crowd-sourcing campaigns for her burgeoning music brand, Pam has shouldered the responsibility for this, the most ambitious project she has ever led.

Who is the app developer Adam Schwem? 

A technology wizard of the highest order, Adam was crafting apps before apps were a thing. He currently helms Learnovate Labs in Austin, where he wrangles app developers and consumes breakfast tacos. Prior to his current adventures, Adam worked in San Francisco for years on a few little apps you might have heard of, including Shazam and Music ID, and crafted the first video streaming app store with nVidia and Verizon.

Our talented artists

Amy Faigin - UI design and The Hair Woven Rope - With brilliant character design and limitless talent, Amy was the natural choice to design our interface and provide art for our first story, The Hair Woven Rope. When she is not crafting art for Metalalia, she can be found masterminding her upcoming webcomic, Chronograph.

Micah Nelson - The Wind Up Boy - It's hard to get more talented and humble than Micah. A visual artist who just so happens to be a rock star, Micah can be found crafting gorgeous images for all sorts of projects and leading his band Insects Vs. Robots through their madcap gnome rock adventures.

Mary Delioussina - The River Girl - A prominent artist on the independent scene in LA, Mary's fanciful yet precise style gives The River Girl its sense of eerie solemnity. She is a prolific artist with countless illustrations and zines to her credit.

Mishkin Fitzgerald - Co-composer on The Wind Up Boy - The charismatic lead singer and keyboard player of Brighton favorites Birdeatsbaby joins us in scoring the music for The Wind Up Boy. Her musical gifts include haunting melodies and epic rocking out.

As support for this project grows, we hope to be able to expand our creative team. We are already in negotiations with new artists, writers and musicians in order for them to contribute their talents to Metalalia. Every contributor will be recompensed for their work, so the more pledges we receive, the more stories we can bring to life!

Where's the money going?

Good question! The $9000 we're asking for will cover our expenses and pay the people doing the up-front heavy lifting.

  • app development - Adam, our developer, needs to be compensated for his time
  • web design - Matt, our web designer, also needs to be paid for the great job he did on the website
  • sound mixing - our sound engineers require recompense for the time they spent mastering our music and narration
  • web hosting & server space - the stories will need to be hosted once we upload them
  • Apple app developer fee - Metalalia has to pay to register as an app developer before they will let us upload 
  • Kickstarter/Amazon - both Kickstarter, hosting, and Amazon, handling payments, will take a small cut of the money pledged

A cornerstone of Metalalia's ethos is that artists and musicians perform a highly skilled job that they deserve to be paid for. This is why, once the stories are ready for purchase, we will pay our artists and guest musicians for their contributions with the proceeds from each sale.

Thank you so much for being a part of Metalalia! We can't wait to see how this story unfolds!

Risks and challenges

There are very few risks involved in this project. If funded, the app should be available in app stores after being approved. The content has already been created and the rewards will ship soon after the completion of the campaign.

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FAQ

  • Metalalia: it comes from Ancient Greek and means 'stories told after'. We think it's a good name for our project, sharing retellings of much-loved fairytales and myths, and tales inspired by folklore.

    Last updated:
  • No, we're releasing this for iOS and Android at launch. Our first stretch goal, should we reach our target, is to make it available for purchase and download on the web.

    Last updated:
  • Other e-readers don't offer the same functionality we do. Some can render hi-res images. Some can even play an audio track. But none can give you two audio tracks you can mix or remove at will, with hi-res images integrated into the text. We believe Metalalia will be a rich storytelling experience like nothing else available.

    Last updated:

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    THE BLOSSOM: Thank you for helping us make this dream a reality! We appreciate any amount you can give -- every penny helps, and all backers will be featured in the roll of honor on our website.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    THE TINKERBELL: You'll receive the Metalalia app at launch, with our first story, The Hair Woven Rope, included. You, and all backers in the tiers above $5, will receive a Kickstarter-exclusive background for the app!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    THE BOMBADIL: You'll receive the Metalalia app at launch with The Hair Woven Rope and a code for a free story of your choice.

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    33 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    THE AURORA: You'll receive the Metalalia app at launch with all three of our release stories: The Hair Woven Rope, The River Girl and The Wind-up Boy.

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    41 backers
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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    THE RHIANNON: You'll receive THE AURORA, as well as a postcard featuring art from the stories!

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    THE MERRIWEATHER: Be our fairy-godmother! You will receive THE AURORA plus exclusive access to our next 3 stories before they are published. Give us your feedback on the fairytales and help bring them to life!

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    PUCK'S POSSE: You'll receive THE AURORA, plus the full set of postcards featuring art from the stories! Special price for early backers!

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    THE PUCK: You'll receive THE AURORA, plus the full set of postcards featuring art from the stories!

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    THE THETIS: Commission your own personal sketch from our illustrator Amy Faigin! You also get THE MERRIWEATHER which includes exclusive access to our stories before they are published!

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    THE ORPHEUS: You'll receive THE PUCK, plus Pam Shaffer's latest album It Is Happening Again!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THE RHAPSODE: Wow! You'll receive THE PUCK, plus the next 10 stories we write for Metalalia, right when they come out. What a deal!

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    Reward no longer available 15 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THE CYMBALINE: You'll receive THE PUCK, plus your choice from one of four 6x10 prints featuring art from the stories, signed by the artist!

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    THE TITANIA: You'll receive THE PUCK, plus a customised USB drive featuring Pam Shaffer's complete back catalogue: music, photography and videos!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    THE QUEEN MAB: You'll receive THE TITANIA, plus a Kickstarter-exclusive chap-book of your choice featuring one of our launch stories, signed by the writer, musician(s) and artist!

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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    MAB'S MINIONS: You'll receive THE QUEEN MAB, and as a special bonus for early backers, you'll also receive the next 10 stories we release. Magical!

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    THE JARETH: You'll receive the TITANIA, plus Kickstarter-exclusive chap-books of all three launch stories, signed by the writer, musicians and artists!

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    THE CALLIOPE: You'll receive THE RHAPSODE, plus you can request a song of your choice for Pam Shaffer to cover!

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    THE THALIA: You'll receive THE RHAPSODE, plus you can collaborate with Pam Shaffer on an original song of your choice!

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  19. Select this reward

    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    THE URANIA: You'll receive THE TITANIA, and you may choose a myth, folktale or fairytale for the Metalalia team to write, score and illustrate. May optionally be published on the Metalalia app! You also receive the next 10 Metalalia stories when they are released!

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    THE ERATO: You'll receive THE TITANIA, and you may choose a myth, folktale or fairytale, or even an original tale of your own for the Metalalia team to collaborate with you on. The story may optionally be published on the Metalalia app! You also receive the next 10 Metalalia stories when they are released!

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  21. Select this reward

    Pledge $600 or more About $600

    THE POLYHYMNIA: You'll receive THE TITANIA, and you may have writer/narrator Alex Nicholson and musician Pam Shaffer play a special concert at your event! (If outside of the Los Angeles area, would require travel and lodging provision.) You also receive the next 10 Metalalia stories when they are released!

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    THE MEMNOSYNE: Choose any or all of the rewards above, and they're yours. Do you have a story you want told? Want us to play at your house? Original artwork from our artists? You're our mythological muse: anything goes! (If outside of the Los Angeles area, would require travel and lodging provision.)

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Funding period

- (31 days)