About this project
Update: All backers will be receiving a high quality audio recording!
Why only seven days?
I was inspired by Kickstarter's All in 1 promotion! I want to get right down to it and make this event happen.
What's the novel about?
The Coldest Day of the Year is the debut novel from Daniel Sutter.
This is a classical adventure story drawing inspiration from the legend of the Marathon runner and Seven Samurai, with a fort at its center not unlike The Alamo.
So, what is it? A fantasy-western?
No, not really. There's nothing fantastical about it. But the goal was to write a swordbook with American themes. If Destry Rides Again or The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance or My Darling Clementine took place two-thousand years earlier, and in the middle of a blizzard, those stories would be similar to The Coldest Day. That's why I pitch Seven Samurai as a main inspiration. Kurosawa was making a Western with swords.
Can you give a taste of the plot?
The Coldest Day details the coming-of-age story of a young warrior bucking against the pressure to follow in the footsteps of her legendary great-grandfather. At heart, she is an explorer and hunter, hoping to chart the wilds at the edge of the map. But she is drawn into a political conflict that threatens to tear her homeland into a civil war.
Her journey is bolstered by two disparate advisors; a young naturalist from a nomadic tribe, and a foreign-born officer with a gift for dispassionate warfare. Together with a company of soldiers and dogs, they confront assassins, conspirators, turncoats, and monsters. But their fiercest enemy is the winter itself.
Here's the nutshell version of the story:
Dogs? Tell me about the dogs!
The heroes travel with a pack of eleven dogs. You get to know some of them really well. Multiple times throughout the story, the humans are saved by the dogs' bravery and training.
When can I read the book?
The moment you back this project with a $10 pledge or more, go to this Backers Only Update for instructions on how to download your book.
I'm not sure I want to spend ten bones. Can I read an excerpt first?
If the book's already done, what are we funding, exactly?
To celebrate the release of the book, I'm putting together a One Night Only staged-reading of select scenes from the novel.
I will be writing new work specifically for this event—monologues that intertwine with scenes from the book while introducing the audience to the characters and conflict.
You're an author, right? What makes you think you can mount a theatrical production?
My background is in theatre and film. This isn't my first production. And because I have some experience, I know to keep it simple. But there will be at least one sword fight!
You seem to really like swords. Do you have any training?
Let's hope you can write better than you can fence.
That's a guarantee.
When will the event be?
I'm aiming to produce the event in May. I need to let the Kickstarter funds clear and then rehearse before we can host the event.
Where will the event be?
I'll be arranging the venue as the campaign rolls along.
So, if I'm not going to the event, should I still back this project?
Of course! The purpose of this event and this project is to celebrate the release of the book. There's a $10 tier that gets you the ebook (right now) as well as the Kickstarter-exclusive script that will be full of unique material. Some of the dialogue from the book will be in there, but everything will be re-structured around monologues from the characters, offering a new perspective of the main characters.
And if I plan on going to the event, what should I pledge?
If you want to reserve seats at the event for you and a guest, pledge $25. You'll also get the ebook (right now) as well as the script of the reading!
Where's the money going?
Funds will pay for the rehearsal spaces, the venue, the actors, and a graphic designer to create a poster. I've already hired editors, a proofreader, the cover illustrator, etc for the book. All of these pledges are going straight into the event!
What are you doing in the meantime?
Great question! I'll be writing the adaptation. I've already outlined the scenes that I will be including. I'm working on the character:actor equation. (There are a lot of characters in the book.)
I'll be updating this campaign as I go, even after the campaign is over. Backers will be able to read the scenes as I write them. Once the adaptation is complete, I'll have a table read with the actors, make some changes, and then send the script as a PDF to all backers. That is a Kickstarter exclusive.
I really like that cover art. Did you illustrate that?
Oh, golly, no! That is the work of the brilliant Bianca O'Neill.
And if you ever need a graphic designer, I highly recommend Amber Cox.
Risks and challenges
The two biggest obstacles are writing the adaptation and securing the venue. I'm confident we can get a venue, but I do not yet have a date or a place set. That's no big deal. Before I book the venue, I want to see how many people back the project. Will we be entertaining 50 guests or 200?
Writing the adaptation will be fun! I'm really excited about it and I've already started. In the spirit of the One Week Campaign, I'm going to spend every night this week working on it and posting updates.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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