Njálla is an original comic story, based around the myths and legends of the Sámi people, indigenous to northern Europe’s Arctic Circle, which today includes parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. Lieđđi, a young Sámi girl, and her reindeer Unni end up on an unexpected adventure after coming face to face with the guovssahasat, the northern lights. Njálla is an atmospheric and magical comic for all ages, unearthing the legends of the Sámi through friendship, mystery and adventure.
A relatively unknown culture, the Sámi ancestral history is believed to span thousands of years. I first discovered the Sámi when my partner Chris and I backpacked through parts of Scandinavia last August, spending a lot of time eating amazing food, walking miles and going to various museums and exhibitions. The more I researched and read about the Sámi, the more I realised how I wanted to bring elements of this culture into a comic – not only to enchant people, but also to give a brief insight into such a historic and interesting culture.
So, what does this mean...?
If successfully funded, Njálla will be printed as an A5 (148 x 210 mm), 48-page full colour comic, in a limited run of 250 copies, perfect bound. It’ll be printed on high quality paper with a lovely soft-against-your-fingertips matte laminate cover for optimum feels whilst stroking.
When I’ve previously self-published comics, I’ve only printed short runs of 100 copies and financed it myself. When I sold out of the 100 copies of my first comic The Red Road within 9 months, I had to pay for another print run with extra costs, which could’ve been avoided if I’d had a higher level of stock to begin with. Also, this story is a far higher page count than anything I’ve created previously, which automatically makes everything that bit more expensive.
So, what does it have to do with you? By pledging to support this project, you’ll be buying a comic you think looks pretty interesting, in advance. But for me, this removes the financial burden of self-funding, meaning I can make this pretty interesting comic for you without worrying about, y’know.. Eating, paying bills... Those pesky little things.
As I said in that piece of cinematic wonder above, I'm Rozi; comics creator and illustrator. Last year I was selected as one of Six UK Small Press Creators to Watch in 2015 by Broken Frontier, after the release of my first self-published comic, The Red Road. In August I went onto self-publish short comics zine Sneaky Business featuring comics from five different creators. I’ve also had work featured in a handful of anthologies, including Dirty Rotten Comics #5, HOME, and this year’s Broken Frontier Small Press Yearbook.
I started drawing when I was a young ‘un, and I've always loved turning animals into characters and giving them stories of their own. To avoid Quasimodo shoulders from long hours at my desk I practise a wonky form of very-beginners yoga, and in my spare time (which is fairly non-existent at the moment) I like to practice the art of gracefully falling down mountains on my snowboard, and doing normal-people things like accidentally eating whole sharing bags of Kettle Chips and watching documentaries.
All rewards are as low-cost as possible to make it worthwhile for you lovely folks. As a pledger, you will receive exclusive updates before anyone else on the progress of the comic, and previews of some of the pages as they reach completion. Aside from the comic itself, there are also some fancy new limited edition rewards.
Printed on high quality 300gsm paper, the bookplates are sized just shy of A5 (185x130mm) to fit neatly inside the comic. Hand numbered, these are limited to 100 and feature original artwork, seen below.
For a discounted price, you can get the collection of all three titles I've self-published in one easy package; Njálla, The Red Road, and Sneaky Business. Priced separately at a total price of £16, you effectively get Sneaky Business for free! Please note, the limited run Njálla bookplate is not included in this package, so if you'd like to request one please add a further £2 to your pledge. Limited to 25.
A5 prints are printed on high quality 300gsm eco-paper; a premium recycled finish with a textured look. Prints will be numbered and signed, and are limited to 25 of each. The A5 print is pictured below, alongside the snazzy bookplate.
Original Artwork - SOLD OUT!
The A5 and A4 original artwork will be based on the characters, ink-drawn and painted in the original style of the comic. If you’d like a personalised message on the front or back of the original, please let me know. Original artwork is limited to 5 of each size.
Original Comic Spreads - SOLD OUT!
One of a kind, original comic spreads are sized at A3, as I draw the comic twice the size it will be printed at. I ink and paint the artwork on the same piece of heavyweight artists paper, so the finished article you'll be pledging for is what you see in the comic. Limited to 3, the original comic spread will be picked at random into your caring home.
Thank you so much to all my wonderful backers; each and every single one of you have made my dreams are come true. Njálla will be printed! Woohoo! But, why stop now?
Because I want to make this campaign as awesome as possible for all of you, I've decided to launch a stretch goal to compliment the comic, and whatever other reward tier goodies you have requested.
£1000 – If the project reaches this level, all backers who have selected to receive a physical copy of Njálla in the post will receive a FREE A5 colouring book and sticker! At 12-pages in length, the colouring book will feature pages of lavvu’s, arctic foxes, reindeers and more, with some additional Northern Sámi words and phrases in there too. Who doesn't love a bit of casual colouring, whilst learning?
Digital PDF pledgers, do not fear! You will be sent a few pages that you can print and colour yourself, to join in the fun.
STRETCH GOAL ACHIEVED! FREE COLOURING FOR ALL!
Postage is available worldwide, and all orders will be shipped in card-backed envelopes to ensure that your goodies arrive in optimum condition. All post will be sent via Royal Mail, 1st Class within the UK (1-2 working days) or Royal Mail International Standard for everywhere else (Europe, 3-5 working days/Rest of the world, 5-7 working days).
Please note, pledges of £30+ (containing original artwork) will be sent via tracked delivery services only. This insures us both whilst the orders are travelling the globe, meaning that there will be no sad-faces with missing orders. If your orders is under £30 and you’d rather have a tracked service for your shiny new comic, then please add £1 to your pledge for UK orders, £4 for EU orders and £5 for Rest of the World and/or get in touch.
What’s the plan? Well, from now until the end of funding I will be happily painting the remaining pages, finishing up the remaining non-story pages, and working on the prints and originals.
If funding is successful, I will send the files over to Rich at Comic Printing UK as soon as this campaign ends, with my dreams being turned into 250 A5 sized realities and sent to my door by mid-late May. All Kickstarter pledged pre-orders will be sent out by the end of May, with the comic being released online in early June.
The total figure of funds requested to complete this project is to pay for making Njálla a reality. Out of the total amount, a whopping 75% goes purely to printing and Royal Mail shipping costs. A further 10% is a cumulation of Kickstarter's own fees and card transaction fees for each pledge. Another 10% goes towards A4/A5 prints and the bookplates, with the remaining 5% going towards costs like packaging for orders and material costs. Here's a handy Sámi lavvu style chart, to explain it all in a topical fashion:
That's right, 0% payment for myself. Any amount over the target of £800 will go directly back into the comic, including stretch goals and exciting things like more packaging materials.
Good question! Well, one of the most awesome things about making comics is working all waking hours (and sometimes barely-waking hours) on something that you love and grow attached to. That said, it's a lot of work, and sometimes that love and attachment is disguised as "I want to throw it all out the window" despair. What makes it all so worth it, is being able to share this thing you've carefully crafted for months, with other people.
I decided to create this story because the Sámi are a fascinating culture with so much history, living in unforgiving and majestic lands. My wish is for people who have never heard of the Sámi before to pick this up and be transported into an other-worldly land of snow and fires in the sky.
Please pledge today, and help make this comic a reality.
For more information...
Read all about my progress on the project so far via my website blog, under its codename The Next Big Thing: www.rozihathaway.com
You can also follow progress on the usual social media channels, via my Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram.
Previous complementary words about The Red Road:
“Stunningly rendered, and painfully beautiful in its own way, The Red Road is an outstanding debut print offering. Keep your eyes on Rozi Hathaway’s work this year because she’s one of half a dozen or so names I have on my list of self-publishing talents I believe will make the next step up in 2015.” - Andy Oliver, Broken Frontier
“…Hathaway deserves fulsome praise for delivering something so brutal, so powerful, in such simple terms. This is good comics.” – Richard Bruton, Forbidden Planet
“Overall, The Red Road is a quietly powerful reading experience and a sure-footed debut from Hathaway. There’s more than enough here to get me really excited for whatever she brings out next as I think her ability to depict difficult emotions with a light touch will translate to a variety of projects.” - Kirsty Hunter, Big Comic Page
Nice things people have said about Njálla so far..
"It’s a project that is an obvious labour of love for its creator and one that comes with a Broken Frontier seal of approval for an artist I consider to be one of the most exciting new voices to have emerged from the UK small press scene in the last year or so. I backed Njálla when it went online this morning because I believe this magical tale is, quite simply, one of the most exciting UK self-published books in the pipeline so far in 2016, and from one of the brightest prospects working in British small press. I hope you’ll consider doing the same..."
Risks and challenges
The script and all the inked artwork is complete, so the only remaining aspect of the project is to finish painting up the remaining pages which I will complete during this campaign. Easy as pie!
If funding is successful, which I really hope it is, Rich at Comic Printing UK is ready to accept my artwork at the end of the campaign to do his print and binding sorcery to create Njálla in its matte laminate covered glory. I also have quotes ready for all remaining aspects of the project, i.e. prints, bookplates, and some other sneaky things.
All in all, I'm in the final stages of completion for this project with all the logistical elements in place for post-project completion, and there are no foreseeable problems with completing the work and having it go to print. However, in the rare eventuality that something might go wrong, I shall use my crisis control expertise to make sure I drag myself through burning embers to deliver all pledged rewards on time.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)