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A teen girl and her .410 shotgun go against a town full of bullies and a dog-fighting ring in order to solve the murder of her friend.
A teen girl and her .410 shotgun go against a town full of bullies and a dog-fighting ring in order to solve the murder of her friend.
187 backers pledged $6,857 to help bring this project to life.

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$6,857

187

Update

Umm. Hot dang, we broke 100% under -- *checks watch* -- 10 hours. Which is crazy and amazing -- "cramazing?" I dunno.

Thanks everybody! Now the question becomes: just how many Atlanta Burns novels do you want me to write? We've got the duration of this Kickstarter to find out.

Bait Dog

Shotgun Gravy is like Veronica Mars on Adderall. Atlanta Burns is a troubled teenage girl who’s scared, angry, and not taking s--t from anybody." -- Stephen Blackmoore, City of the Lost

The last time shotgun-wielding Atlanta Burns tangled with the town bullies it seemed like she and her friends has won the day. But then her cohort Chris Coyne ended up dead -- dead by his own hand if you believe the reports.

Atlanta and her pal Shane are not so sure. 

Atlanta, afraid of once again stirring up the hornets by investigating her friend's apparent suicide, instead focuses her efforts on looking into the death of another teen's beloved dog. Once again she kicks over a log and doesn't like what squirms underneath -- Atlanta's efforts will embroil her in a rural Pennsylvania dog-fighting ring and, to her surprise, provide new clues regarding the suicide of her friend that suggest Chris may have been murdered.

Once again she finds herself face-to-face with bullies of the worst sort, staring down a corruption that's seeped into the town like a septic infection. It's all too much for one girl to handle and she knows what happens when she and her trusty .410 squirrel gun go up against the cruel and callous malefactors of the world. No good can come of this, and yet, Atlanta cannot abide letting bad men do awful things to those who don't deserve it. 

This, then, is Bait Dog: one girl, her single-barrel Winchester shotgun, and a whole town full of terrible deserving of some country justice.

(Bait Dog is a complete standalone novel at least 50,000 words in length. Everything you need to know about Atlanta Burns come with successfully pledging and funding this Kickstarter.)

Here's The Deal

“Give Nancy Drew a shotgun and a kick-butt attitude and you get Atlanta Burns. Packed with action and fascinating characters, Shotgun Gravy is a story that will captivate both teens and adults and have them clamoring for the next installment.” –- Joelle Charbonneau, author of Skating Over the Line

In the fall I released a novella -- Shotgun Gravy -- starring the character of Atlanta Burns, a girl with a troubled past who was the subject of abuse and who can no longer abide the abuse of others. I intended for her to be a little bit Veronica Mars, a touch of Raylan Givens from Justified, and a dollop of Charles Bronson in Death Wish. Equal parts detective and vigilante, but in a country-noir teen mode of storytelling.

The original intention was to release a series of novellas -- four to start -- that detailed a kind of "season of Atlanta Burns episodes," but as I started to work on Bait Dog I found that what I had was a story that did not want to be compressed into a novella. It had... greater aspirations.

The prologue novella, Shotgun Gravy, has gotten a lot of love since its release, now rocking 51 four- and five-star reviews at Amazon. I recently made that novella available for free during a short promotional period and in 24 hours the story ended up in over 5000 new hands. I continue to get emails from people and see blog posts detailing how much they like Atlanta, and how the novella -- which deals with issues of bullying, gay rights, and teen violence -- hit them hard in some way, both as entertainment and as something that reached a little deeper.

So, that means it's high time to get Bait Dog out there. I appreciate you supporting me and this book and throwing a little love toward Atlanta Burns. She's a character that means a lot to me, so I can only hope she'll mean something to you, too. Thanks for reading, Glorious Humans of the Internet.

Wishful Thinking

If this Kickstarter goes beyond it's goal, then the additional rewards go toward additional Atlanta Burns novels. For every $3,000 raised beyond the goal, I'll write another brand new Atlanta Burns novel (potential titles include: Be Aggressive, Harum Scarum, Bully Pulpit, though titles are subject to change, of course).

(art below by the mighty Amy Houser)

FAQ

  • No, I'm afraid it does not. The five dollar SQUIRREL GUN pledge only includes a digital copy of the novella that introduces Atlanta Burns.

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  • Nope. It is not, as they say, BYOS, or "Bring Your Own Shotgun." All your shotgunning needs will be covered. Besides, let's be honest: nobody's actually going to buy in at that reward level.

    Last updated:
  • Here's how it works.

    For every $3000 you give me, I will write a new Atlanta Burns novel.

    Any backer at the $25 level and higher will receive any new novels I write in the digital format of your choice (PDF, ePub, MOBI). It's that simple.

    What's not quite as simple is figuring out the timeline for each book. I'm happy to give a rough timeline of three to six months for each (I've already got a couple Atlanta Burns stories outlined), though it bears noting that a book may require more time if that book isn't up to the level of quality I hope it will be.

    Last updated:

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    SQUIRREL GUN: You will receive an e-book of the Atlanta Burns prologue novella in the format of your choosing (PDF, ePub, Mobi).

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    SINGLE BARREL: You receive an e-book copy of the BAIT DOG novel as well as the Atlanta Burns prologue novella in the format of your choosing (PDF, ePub, Mobi). In addition, you will be thanked in the back of the book and receive a handwritten postcard from yours truly.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    SIDE-BY-SIDE: You receive all the rewards from the first two tiers and also get a digital copy of Fireside Magazine #1, featuring a brand new Atlanta Burns short story ("Emerald Lakes"). Fireside #1 also features work by Tobias Buckell, Ken Liu, Christie Yant, DJ Kirkbride, and Adam P. Knave.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    OVER-UNDER: You receive all the rewards from the first two tiers and also get a limited hardcover edition of BAIT DOG. (Add $10 for international shipping.)

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    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    PUMP ACTION: You receive all the rewards from the first two tiers and also get a limited hardcover edition -- autographed and personalized -- of BAIT DOG. (Add $10 for international shipping.)

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    AUTOLOADER: You receive the rewards of the PUMP ACTION tier and, in addition, will receive an Atlanta Burns-themed trucker hat. (Must add $10 for international shipping.)

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    RIOT GUN: You receive the rewards of the PUMP ACTION tier and in addition can name one of the characters (dog or human) featured within BAIT DOG. It can be your name or any name/nickname of your choosing (though author has discretion to ask you to choose a different name in order to fit the atmosphere of the story).

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    BULL-PUP: You receive the rewards of the PUMP ACTION tier and, in addition, for every BULL-PUP reward procured, I will write a brand new Atlanta Burns short story (~3000 words) and release it free to all. I will also name a character in one of the short stories after you (or after a name of your choosing).

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    STREET SWEEPER: You receive all the rewards of the PUMP ACTION tier and I'll fly to your location in the United States and there will give a reading to you and 20 of your friends and/or will also give a talk on the subject of writing and storytelling (which is often the purview of my website, terribleminds.com). Further, all present will receive limited hardcover copies of the book, autographed by yours truly.

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    AA-12: You receive all the rewards of the PUMP ACTION tier and, what the hell, I'll fly you here for a night from anywhere in the United States. We'll grab dinner and, provided you appear to be of sound mind and body, we'll take out the shotguns and pop off a few rounds just like Atlanta Burns might. I promise not to murder you if you promise not to murder me. Deal?

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Funding period

- (32 days)