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Unbelievable, but no sh!t, there I was, seeing a Kickstarter for 24 improbable tales from science fiction, fantasy, and horror authors.
466 backers pledged $11,085 to help bring this project to life.

A Trifecta of Improbable Updates: 250 Backers, More Rewards, and A Gestalt's Behind The Story!

Posted by Steven Saus (Creator)

Holy cats! We've reached 250 backers! That's amazing, and it's all thanks to you spreading the word and working with us to bring you amazing improbable stories! Thank you so much!

If you were disappointed that the tuckerizations and critiques were snapped up early, we've just added two more critiques (one from author Lou Berger, one from me) and a tuckerization from Lou Berger! If you decide to change your pledge, it's totally possible; the instructions are right here:

Today I'm going to bring you the behind the scenes look from Baker & Dovey, and my, it's a doozy!

 What's a Gestalt Entity Like You Doing With a Supremely Ridiculous Fantasy Story Like That, Anyway?, OR How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Hrrnngnngrrrndr, the Sword of a Hundred Thousand Agonies.

No shit, there I was, with my feet sloshing through the starlit puddles of a wintry Oregon evening and my head breathing in the fragrant steam of my morning cuppa…

Life can be terribly complicated when your consciousness is split across two continents, but it sure does make collaboration easier.

Both of my constituent parts had seen the No Shit call when it first appeared on the Alliteration Ink website, and—fools that they are—decided they had neither the time nor inspiration to write something new. With barely a month to go before the deadline, an off-hand comment (in a very different genre) by ConsciousnessB on ConsciousnessD’s website led to an utterly ridiculous first line about undead weasels, which soon blossomed into a furious exchange of e-mails and a Google Doc and—barely a week later—I was sitting back, slightly stunned by my sudden mind-meld, and staring at a complete fantasy story with the glorious title of “How I Became Coruscating Queen of All the Realms, Pierced the Obsidian Night, Destroyed a Legendary Sword, and Saved My Heart's True Love.”

It’s a bit of a cliché to say ‘the story wrote itself,’ so I won’t do that. And besides, it isn’t really true. But the process of collaboration sometimes made it seem as though the story did write itself. This was in part due to my method of writing by one-up-man-ship.

Thus: Consciousness B would go to sleep in the middle of Consciousness D’s day and wake up to find a perilous situation escaped from in an ingenious and chortle-inducing manner, but left with a new problem to be resolved. Meanwhile, Consciousness D would go to sleep in the middle of Consciousness B’s day and wake up to find that while Consciousness B had added about 500 words to the story, he had actually not resolved the current imperilment, and had in fact made it even more perilous. (Sucker!)

Once the draft was done, several brave souls sacrificed their brains for a quick critique (during Krampus-time, no less!). It is with the utmost sincerity and many a shed tear that I report they spontaneously died of delayed laughter after sending in their comments.

Martin L. ShoemakerKrystal ClaxtonSeánan ForbesEleanor R. Wood, and K.D. Julicher: your sacrifices were not in vain! I thank you from the bottom of my grotesquely disfigured eight-chambered heart.

Things I learned (other than to stop worrying &c.)

  • Parodic fantasy is fun

  • Splitting your consciousness into two parts makes proof-reading and editing quite easy

  • I laugh at my own jokes. Repeatedly. Even during edits three months later.

  • The Swedish word for ‘basket’

  • Time zones may be a bit of a bitch, but they are supremely useful when collaborating on a short story

  • I have read far too many fantasy novels and played far too much D&D and LARP

  • The appeal of pseudonyms

  • Splitting your consciousness into two parts makes proof-reading and editing quite easy

Things I didn’t learn:

  • Good taste

  • The correct way to refer to oneself when one is a gestalt entity whose consciousness is split across two continents

  • How to spell the name of my own invented magic sword

  • To stop laughing at my own jokes

  • The Swedish word for ‘being disemboweled by one’s own great-grandmother in a hilariously inappropriate time travel mishap involving a rusty suit of armour, three tons of surströmming, and an irate Discordian antipope’ (although not for want of trying)

  • How to love the bomb

  • The appeal of surströmming

If you too would like to learn the secret to becoming a gestalt entity for fun and profit, you can check out my website at, which contains nothing of the sort.

I do hope you will enjoy reading “How I Became Coruscating Queen of All the Realms, Pierced the Obsidian Night, Destroyed a Legendary Sword, and Saved My Heart's True Love,” and the rest of the No Shit stories. (While I am happy to accept laudatory e-mails extolling my virtues, I take no responsibility for death-by-laughter. Please see my disclaimer for more information.)

--Baker & Dovey

It's been a while since I've published anything from a hive mind, so I'm really looking forward to this one!

Remember, while we've made great progress, we aren't there yet! Keep spreading the word, either on your own or using the convenient links below:

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Thanks so much for your support, and let's fund this thing!

Steven Saus, Patti Short, and 1 more person like this update.


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    1. Tasha Turner

      Great story. I'm looking forward to this one.