Help us rescue unique, out-of-print adventure stories from copyright limbo and make them available online and as e-books!
Our Big Idea is a simple one, but we think it’s pretty great. And apparently, the Internet agrees! Check out our first project, Save the Sci Fi - now in it's second year, and still going strong!
You see, we love books. A lot. New and old (but mostly old), any era, any genre. Take Adventure – now that's a genre. Once the bread and butter of popular pulp fiction, adventure stories offer escape from the ordinary, transporting readers into worlds bursting with high seas thrills, Amazonian man hunts, hot pursuit of buried treasure, sweaty knife fights – earthly excitements of all persuasions - like these! But in a war of attrition with radio, film and TV, adventure literature eventually bid a gradual retreat from popular memory, leaving countless world-famous titles of yore out of print, out of circulation, and unavailable in any digital format.
Now that just doesn't seem right. Adventure doesn't retire to a quiet life of bingo nights and prune juice! Adventure gets back in the saddle, back on the water, back up the mountain, back where the action is. And that's where we come in: bringing adventure back, one book at a time!
Here's the plan: Each month we’ll choose one great classic, obscure or otherwise fascinating adventure book no longer in print and not available online, track down the author (if they’re still around) and/or copyright holder, clear the copyright, and publish the title as an e-book. Every book will come with newly imagined cover art and editor's notes sharing what we learned about the book, the author and their history along the way.
But before the adventure begins, we need your help! Your support allows us to rescue a year's worth of adventure titles (one a month) by providing for the following:
* Acquiring and sifting through forgotten treasures among many, many paper copies of old, out of print adventures books
* Expanding our website to allow display and delivery of our adventure library to supporters like you
* Building another open source book scanner (see http://www.diybookscanner.org/ for an example) to increase our ability to convert forgotten pulp into digital formats
* Covering costs associated with tracking down rightsholders, authors and/or their estates, as well as clearing electronic publishing rights to orphaned books
* Covering costs associated with legal work done by our attorneys, all of whom are generously contributing their time pro bono (we’re trying to keep our costs as low as possible)
* Spreading the word to potential supporters who love great books and ideas (may include attending conventions, creating t-shirts, prints and anything else we can think of)
Rescuing out-of-print and otherwise orphaned books by bringing them into the digital domain is more than a labor of love – it's our life's work. Please help us continue preserving the past for the future. Because Singularity (&Co) loves company!
Risks and challenges
Luckily, as this project parallels our Save the Sci Fi Kickstarter campaign, we're very familiar with the challenges that come with meeting our goals, and confident we can tackle them well.
The greatest challenge of our last project was fulfilling shipments of physical prizes, a process we've since been able to streamline.
The other big challenge was clearing books in time to publish one each month. This time, we've given ourselves a little leeway there by pre-clearing three books, giving us a time cushion to find, clear, and publish more titles in a timely manner!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
In a word, no. No DRM, not now, not ever. That's not to say that Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and the rest will not impose their own DRM on copies distributed via their platforms, but members will always have access to DRM-free copies of their books.
In short, yes. We are going to strive to make our books available on every major ebook distribution platform, and in every format we can. The goal is to make these books accessible. If there is some platform we are missing, all you have to do is ask and we'll do our very best to support it.
Once our funding is closed, we will send out a survey to all of our backers asking for the necessary contact info. All you need to do is fill in the information for the giftee instead of yourself. If you want more than one of anything, just pledge the right amount and let us know in the notes.
Turning old books into ebooks is relatively easy. Doing it in such a way that we respect copyright and the rights of the authors of the books that we love is the hard part, and that's why Singularity&Co. needs your help.
Some of the books that we ebookify will be "orphaned," with no current copyright holder. Even so, we're going to do our very best track down the authors (or their estates) and get their blessing.
Most of the books we attempt to rescue, however, will be in copyright but out of print. Some great books find themselves out of print because the demand for them just isn't there. Others are out of print because their publication rights have become muddled (to put it kindly) over the years, and some are just plain forgotten. These are exactly the books we aim to rescue.
There is a world of great adventure titles that are effectively forgotten by fans of the genre, by publishers, and sometimes even by the authors who wrote them. Add to that the facts that the publishing houses of the past were not always the best at respecting their contractual obligations, that publishing contracts of the past often didn't contemplate the media of the future, and that for a host of reasons authors often didn't understand their rights, or were not in a position to protect them, and you have what is in technical terms called a "mess."
Singularity&Co. is going to untangle that mess, sleuth out the rights and rights holders of these great, neglected works, and in doing so make it possible to bring them into the 21st century while at the same time respecting the rights of their authors.
Support this project
- (45 days)