Funded! This project was successfully funded on July 26, 2012.

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"Pilate's Ghost," book 3 in the John Pilate Series is almost finished, but there won't be a paperback (or podcast) version without you!

A Ghost Haunts Me.


Pilate's Ghost, to be precise. Here are the basics, straight from the horse's mouth:


You see, in October 2012, I'll publish Pilate's Ghost, the third book in the award-nominated (and might I add well-reviewed) John Pilate Mystery Series.

Our small but loyal fan base enjoys following our hero, John Pilate (an attractive, flawed guy who's also kind of a wise a**) as he careens from one quirky mystery to another. Always at his side is Simon, his imaginary, sardonic pal, as well as a supporting cast of grouches, professors, fishermen, cops, beach bums, crooks and people who excel at the art of sexy distraction.

The series is more than mysteries, though. More than anything, it's about interesting characters in unusual circumstances. There's love, sex, violence, bad behavior, sarcastic comments, oblique references to pop culture and even drink recipes.

With all due respect, this isn't Agatha Christie.

A Little Backstory.

Anyway, the first two books were published as eBooks and in paperback, available everywhere. Both were accepted into the collection of the Kansas City Public Library and are on the shelves of indie bookstores here and there around the country. This independently published series has so far sold just under 4,000 copies (eBooks and paperbacks) combined--but the books continue to get more reviews and attention every day. I've been interviewed by countless blogs, had my work dramatized for podcast and even appeared on radio and TV talking about the books.

I truly believe it's starting to take off.


The first book, Pilate's Cross, is inspired by a true-life murder at a small college in the American Midwest. Instead of telling you about it, I'd rather show you. Check out the trailer:

It was nominated as Best Mystery in the 2011 Global eBook Awards and was a finalist for Best Book Cover.

The follow up, Pilate's Key, plays out on the beaches of Key West, Florida:

It is currently a semi-finalist for Best Mystery/Thriller in the Kindle Book Review Awards. So you can see, this isn't just my pals and parents saying this. People dig these books!

Anyway, the next book, Pilate's Ghost follows the exploits of John Pilate all over the map--with some pretty bad hombres on his tail. It promises to have the same playful spirit, smart-alack dialogue and energetic pacing my readers have come to expect from this series.

So, like the previous books, I want to offer this third book in paperback format.

Why A Paperback?

There are many readers who either don't like eBooks or don't have the financial means to buy my work and can only get books on loan from the library. Also, a paperback version helps the series gain new fans by making it available in every possible format. Ebooks are great--but there's still nothing like a paperback to get it on shelves in front of people. (There are also many who prefer audiobooks--more about that in a minute).

So What's the Problem?

It's not cheap to produce a print-on-demand paperback. Costs of editing, typesetting, book design, cover design (After two--going on three--covers I owe my brilliant cover artist a stipend!), production, review copies and shipping can add up. It can cost anywhere from $1200-$1500.

Put simply: my current financial situation makes it unrealistic for me to offer the paperback version of this new book. (My daughter needs new shoes!)

Any profits I've made on the ebook versions to date have been completely swallowed up by the paperback costs (and the website, eBook formatting, book trailers, review copies, postage, PR, advertising, etc.). Put simply: my current financial situation makes it unrealistic for me to offer the paperback version of this new book. (And my daughter needs new shoes!)

That's Where You Come In.

For a mere pittance, you can ensure there will be a paperback version of Pilate's Ghost and provide a little seed money for the audio versions.

You'll qualify for some spiffy rewards, including free eBooks, autographed copies of the new book and other books in the series…and you can even be in the book itself! Have a look at the rewards and perks on the right side of this page for ways you can get a whole lot for just a modest investment.

Can You Hear Me Now?

I'd also like to dramatize all three novels as audiobooks, but that takes studio time and an engineer to get it done right (I refuse to read the books into an iPhone while crouching in a poorly-soundproofed closet!). So any extra funds left over after the paperback is paid for will go in the audiobook production fund. If I get at least $200 set aside from Kickstarter, I'll pony up the rest of the funds to record the first audiobook.

This Is Not An All-Or-Nothing Deal.

I want to be clear--there will be a Pilate's Ghost book, no matter what. I owe it to John Pilate fans to produce the third book. (Besides, I've already finished the first draft!) However, if I cannot get the funding for a paperback (and audiobook), so be it, I'll produce an eBook version exclusively.

However, if I earn the support of enough people like you, there will be a great-looking paperback ready to hit the shelves of bookstores, libraries and the hands of those without the means or desire to use an ereader. Not to mention an audiobook of "Pilate's Cross" in 2013.

So, What Do You Say?

Some have said the John Pilate Mysteries would make a cool movie. I'm not that grandiose, but I do think it's something special. I think at the very least it could be a long running, entertaining series of books--and isn't being entertained worth a few bucks? That's no mystery if you ask me.

Thanks for reading this--and if you want to check out the first two books before you open your wallet to invest in the third, by all means please do. Click here for free samples on my Amazon page or in any format on Smashwords.

We have three weeks to make this happen. I'm asking for $1,500. (Bear in mind, Kickstarter will apply a 5% fee to the funds raised, and Amazon will apply credit card processing fees (between 3-5%) to what I raise. If I don't reach the $1,500 minimum goal, then the deal is off and your credit card will not be charged.)

Many thanks for your time and consideration--with your help, this book has more than a ghost of a chance!

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    My gratitude for your support!

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    My eternal gratitude and an ebook download (in any ereader format) of "Pilate's Ghost"!

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    4 backers

    The above, plus your name listed as a Citizen of Cross Township on PilatesCross.com AND one ebook download (in any ereader format) of ALL THREE of my books: "Pilate's Cross,""Pilate's Key" and "Pilate's Ghost."

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    1 backer Limited (29 left of 30)

    The above, plus one eBook download of my award-winning short story "Obsidian" (Kindle or PDF version only).

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    2 backers Limited (23 left of 25)

    The above, plus your name listed as one of Pilate's People on PilatesCross.com WITH a link to your blog, favorite charity, book, or anything that isn't porn or political dogma.

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    12 backers Limited (8 left of 20)

    The above, plus one autographed paperback of "Pilate's Ghost"!

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    0 backers Limited (30 left of 30)

    Everything listed above, plus the alternate ending to "Pilate's Key"! John Pilate fans will love this ending--which was so weird and nutty I just couldn't use it.

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    10 backers Limited (10 left of 20)

    The above, plus an autographed copy of ALL THREE Pilate books in paperback! (Think of it as a box set without the environmentally-threatening box!)

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    2 backers Limited (2 left of 4)

    The above, plus...wait for it...YOUR NAME on the ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS page of the book!

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    2 backers All gone!

    The above, plus I'LL NAME A CHARACTER IN THE BOOK AFTER YOU! (No, it won't be a major character, but you will be in there--I'll even tailor the character's physical appearance to suit.) Immortality, baby! Also, your name will be listed as a member of Simon's Circle on PilatesCross.com WITH a link to your blog, favorite charity, book, or anything that isn't porn or political dogma!

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    0 backers Limited (3 left of 3)

    The above, plus your name will be read as ASSOCIATE PRODUCER in the credits of the audio version of "Pilate's Cross"! WAIT...THERE'S MORE! On top of all that, I will appear at your book club, party, bar mitzvah, rave, poetry reading, orgy or whatever via Skype! I'll hang around for up to half an hour, make droll remarks, do a reading, talk about the new book, my old books, and maybe even the next book. Or, you can mute the sound and throw stuff at the screen. (Schedule must be by mutual agreement. Also, please note the audiobook portion of your perks is deliverable sometime in 2013).

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    The above, plus your name will be read as EXECUTIVE PRODUCER in the credits of the audio version of ALL THREE books! (The audiobook portion of your perks for "Pilate's Cross" is deliverable in 2013. Recording schedule/release of the other two audiobooks will depend on funding availability, but your Executive Producer credit is guaranteed be listed when the other books are recorded).

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