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What two scientists find below the surface of Mars will change them forever. The award winning sci-fi comic, in print for the 1st time.
What two scientists find below the surface of Mars will change them forever. The award winning sci-fi comic, in print for the 1st time.
2,275 backers pledged $140,452 to help bring this project to life.

Thank you so much... We did it!! Here's what's next:

Posted by Der-shing Helmer (Creator)
No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.
No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.

Thank you all so much for bringing Mare Internum to life.

The comic begins with Mike contemplating his isolation, but realizing along the way that he is connected to a larger system (and yeah, sometimes that system is a disrespectful ocean). The meta story for the comic is that when I began it, I was also feeling completely alone and languishing at my personal rock bottom. And here we are 5 years later and over 2000 of you have joined in to help me complete this journey... I really can't thank you more for that. 

What's next for this Kickstarter?

If you're new-ish to Kickstarter, I'll lay out how the rest of the process is going to (ideally) go:

  • 0-2 weeks after the KS ends: Kickstarter will start collecting pledges
  • 2-ish weeks after the KS ends: Funds are delivered to me via white doves
  • late May: final files go to print
  • June: comic PDF sent to yalls (and other digital rewards will be released as they become available)
  • July: I finish up production of rewards and extras
  • August: begin mailing out extras envelopes to the Premium digital tier
  • Sept: books arrive????? (this is highly dependent on random things like weather, customs, higher powers, etc). At this point, I will send out the backer survey asking for your most up-to-date mailing address, and you'll be able to add any additional softcovers of this book or The Meek V1 softcover to your order at a bundled shipping price.
  • Oct- Dec: fulfillment!! The speed at which you receive your order will depend mostly on how personalized it is... the simpler lower tiers will go out asap, and the higher tiers will take a little bit longer since I want to make sure they are 100% perfect before they go out :]

I'll keep you all updated via... updates... for all the major steps of the process. But PLEASE do not hesitate to contact me if you have any additional questions about anything, even just to check in about how printing is going or stuff like that. I want you all to feel secure in knowing that I care deeply about this project and getting the best possible product in your hands in a few months :]

What's next for ________?

I have two more things to mention...

The first is that my fulfillment assistant on this project is none other than my brother. My brother is extremely special to me: he is autistic, is a wonderful person, but not able to live or work independently without a lot of supervision. I love him more than anything. All of my work involves themes of caretaking and loving people even if they are different than you, and that is because of him. For as long as I can remember (talking like 5 years old here) I've wanted to be in a position where I can employ him doing tasks he can excel in, and in a safe environment. Thanks to you, this is the first time I'm able to do that.

moving on up
moving on up

 The second thing is: Mare Internum will be the first book published by Ascend Comics, a new comic publishing company that I have started with one of my very best friends in the world, Taneka Stotts. Taneka taught me everything I know about publishing my work and running Kickstarters, and was my project manager on The Meek V1 KS. Mare Internum was my first solo Kickstarter, and my way of proving I have the chops to be a worthy business partner to Taneka. We're dedicated to elevating comics from the inside, and you've all been a part of that too.

Anyways this is getting long... what I'm trying to say is, regardless of what you make, or how you make it, there are connections. Maybe you don't realize that linking or reading or supporting a random comic project does something, but it can literally change the lives of people you know, and even people you haven't met yet. That connection is the reason I keep going and I thank you for giving me the opportunity to prove myself to you.



Newell, XHIBA, and 102 more people like this update.


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    1. Bobby Nunnery

      I know, I've read them, other folks comments about those last two paragraphs, and honestly, I'm moist-eyed happy for everyone involved. Thank you for sharing.

    2. Kat Piercy on

      Very much looking forward to the coming months with updates. I find myself very thankful I found your Kickstarter when I did. Your last two paragraphs in particular about your brother and friend are particularly lovely, as it's always nice to hear about these more personal sides of the people we back.

    3. Gearald William Becker

      On behalf of my fellow autists everywhere, THANK YOU for being Your Brother's Keeper. Everybody needs help from others; those of us who "think different" just need a little more, and are perfectly capable of giving back some awesome stuff you just won't get anywhere else... of course you already kind of said that by starting off with the "no man is an island" bit... ;)

      (I *KNEW* I was looking at something special when I saw this KS...!)

    4. Carly Sorge on


    5. John L Vogt

      Thanks for sharing.

    6. Nicholas Daniel Cannan on

      Just sent off my dove with the money.
      She’s the little one with the gimpy wing. Be nice to her!

    7. Flying Monkey on

      This update made me all weepy.


    8. Rengin Tümer on

      Congratulations, and thank you for the insights in this post! It's great to know you pay it forward and use the KS as a great investment for your career.

    9. Missing avatar

      butterwort on


    10. Teej

      I'm so excited for you!!!!