Project image
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$3,121
pledged of $2,370pledged of $2,370 goal
126
backers
5days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Fri, November 22 2019 2:07 PM UTC +00:00.

Camp Bitter Lake: The Case of the Stolen Stuff

An all-ages summer camp mystery story from Jim Gibbons and Julie Oliveira!

Camp Bitter Lake: The Case of the Stolen Stuff

An all-ages summer camp mystery story from Jim Gibbons and Julie Oliveira!

$3,121
pledged of $2,370pledged of $2,370 goal
126
backers
5days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Fri, November 22 2019 2:07 PM UTC +00:00.

About

 Hi! We're Jim and Julie! Thanks for checking out Camp Bitter Lake. 

 Camp Bitter Lake: The Case of the Stolen Stuff is a 20-page all-ages digital comic — the first standalone chapter in a series of mystery-filled summer camp stories about learning to trust yourself and to rely on your friends. 

Inspired by years of camp memories and spooky campfire stories, Camp Bitter Lake is an all-ages comic that's Scooby Doo meets X-Files crossed with Heavyweights. It’s Moonrise Kingdom with 100 percent more monsters! It's Salute Your Shorts with the supernatural! It's the spooky nineties summer camp movie you wished existed when you were growing up, now brought to life (with your help) in comic form and ready to share with your kids/nephews/nieces/friend's kids!  

What's it about?

There’s something strange about Roswell, New Mexico’s very weird summer camp — made even stranger by a sudden rash of mysterious cabin robberies. Four friends must band together, put their differences behind them, and figure out who the heck is stealing everyone's stuff.

You know we got a mystery to solve, so Camp Crew, be ready for your act — don't hold back!

Who's it for?

Everyone! But, more specifically, it's perfect for kids who love weird tales (with monsters!) all about friends learning to trust each other to overcome obstacles. It's for adults who grew up on Goonies and are looking for the next fun read to hand their kids after they binged all of Gravity Falls

The gang's all here!

Who are the characters? 

Hadiya Qasim, Hazel Brazel, and brothers Larry and Earvin Midwest just started hanging out at Camp Bitter Lake this summer. What unites them? They all love a good mystery! And Waterfront Director Rodney wants them to stop sneaking candy bars out of the kitchen at night, so if a mystery keeps them busy, that's perfect!

Why Kickstarter?

A year ago, Julie and I began talking about creating a book. We came up with the gang for Camp Bitter Lake, put together a pitch, and started getting it in front of editors and publishers. We had some ups and downs, but mostly, we both have day jobs and pitching is TIME-CONSUMING. What we really want to be doing is telling stories. So, we decided it was time to just do the dang thing. 

What's that dang thing? What we hope to do is create our comic and get it directly to our audience (You!) as quickly as possible and — if this goes well — do that as many times as possible. That's part of the reason we're doing this digitally. We want to get these stories into your (and your kids') hands as regularly as we can. We're making stories we want to read (or wished we could have read when we were kids) and we want to get them to you ASAP to enjoy.

Hopefully, this is just the beginning of a great relationship with you — our prospective readers — where we fund an issue, make it, deliver it, and repeat that process as long as you guys dig what we're doing! It's a program that we think can work — with your help!

Who are we?

The creators: Jim Gibbons and Julie Oliveira.

Jim Gibbons (writer and co-creator) is a multiple Eisner and Harvey Award-winning editor for his work on Dark Horse Presents. His writing credits include Legend of Ninkasi: Rise of Craft (Dark Horse Comics), Birch Squatch: The Last Bigfoot, and Mars: Space Barbarian. His work has been featured in Corpus: A Comic Anthology of Bodily Ailments and Planetside: A Sci-Fi Slice of Life Comic Anthology. Learn more at TheJimGibbons.com.

Julie Oliveira (artist and co-creator) is a storyteller, artist, and a recent graduate of Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where she studied animation. Her thesis film “Muco” was screened at film festivals around the globe. Currently, she is a production artist at FableVision Studios in Boston, where she collaborates with the team to produce interactive media, games, and animation for children. Her work can be found at JulieOliveira.com.

Adam Pruett (lettering, design, and prepress) is a letterer and designer whose design credits include Copra and Bloodstrike: Brutalists (Image) and Rum Row (Grenade Fight Ink). He has lettered The Moebius Library, Splatoon, Quiet Kind (Dark Horse), Bloodshot: Reborn (Valiant), and Captain Ultimate (Monkeybrain/Soup Dad Comics). He very rarely self-publishes new issues of the anthology zine Gosh is Dead.

Your friendly neighborhood comics creators, Julie and Jim! Plus, a good look at the headshot art you can expect from Julie if you back the project at the Digital Avatar tier!

Costs

$2,370 isn't a huge budget, but here's how it breaks down:

  • $670: Lettering, design, and prepress on the comic. 
  • $300: Kickstarter fees and incidentals.
  • $1400: A bit of payment for Julie and Jim's efforts creating the book, and for their time spent on fulfillment — emailing books and rewards to everyone.  

Endorsements

"Camp Bitter Lake takes my favorite elements of '80s youth media and reimagines them for a modern audience. It promises a unique world with an authentic cast, evoking the creative sensibility of contemporary heavyweights like Hilda and Gravity Falls.” - Eisner Award-winner Jen Bartel (Blackbird, Black Panther)

"Go get those monsters!" - Jim's 7-year-old nephew "He really liked it!" - his parents

"Camp Bitter Lake has the same vibe as some of my favorite animated shows — like Gravity Falls or Steven Universe. It's full of a pure sense of adventure. This is the summer that past me wanted to live! I feel like a member of the party right from the first page." - Eisner and Harvey Award nominee Victor Santos, creator of Polar, now a Netflix original film 

"Come and look at dis. I wanna watch dis." - Jim's 2.5-year-old son (who can't read yet, but is thrilled about the inevitable animated series) 

"Camp Bitter Lake is a spooky, fun-filled book that's jam-packed with jokes, snacks, and monsters — aka my favorite things in the world." - Dave Scheidt (Mayor Good Boy, Wrapped Up, Dreamworks' Trolls)

Artist's rendering of you bringing joy to the kids in your life by supporting this digital comic!
Artist's rendering of your kid thinking you are very cool for sharing an awesome self-published digital comic you supported with them!

 Sample pages

Take a peek at some Camp Bitter Lake pages...

Risks and challenges

Schedule and fulfillment: First thing's first, the script is complete and the artwork is in process. The beauty of going all digital with direct distribution is that as soon as we're finished, the issue and rewards will start going out to backers. We're on schedule and aiming to make these campaigns a habit, so getting you the book on time (and setting that standard to build trust with you, our audience) is our top priority.

One thing to note: Camp Bitter Lake is an all-ages comic for kids, but the additional digital comics rewards at higher tiers ARE NOT FOR CHILDREN. Heads up! But be a good parent/aunt/uncle/godparent/babysitter and get the kiddo in your life some fun kids comics (that you can enjoy too) AND treat yourself to some other good PG-13 and R-rated horror and sci-fi comics content!

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Support

  1. Make a pledge without a reward

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    Digital copy of Camp Bitter Lake!

    Get a PDF copy of Camp Bitter Lake: The Case of the Stolen Stuff — 20 pages of all-ages summer camp mystery-solving fun!

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    DELUXE digital Camp Bitter Lake bundle!

    Get a PDF copy of the 20-page Camp Bitter Lake: The Case of the Stolen Stuff, plus a PDF of the bonus story Camp Bitter Lake: Kitchen Raid. AND get your name in the back of the book as a supporter.

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    Space Barbarian bundle!

    Get PDFs of both Camp Bitter Lake stories, your name in the back of the book, AND a 20-page PDF copy of Mars: Space Barbarian — Jim's swords and sorcery IN SPACE comic.

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    Short Story Superstar bundle!

    Get PDFs of both Camp Bitter Lake stories, your name in the book, a PDF of Mars: Space Barbarian, AND four more PDFs of short comic stories written by Jim — nearly 70 pages of comics goodness! Horror, sci-fi, sports, and auto-bio tales for the dope adult reader backing this kid's comic!

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    Birch Squatch bundle!

    All the above PDF comics (70 pages of content including both Camp Bitter Lake stories), your name in the book AND a PDF of the graphic novella Birch Squatch: The Last Bigfoot by Caleb Goellner and Jim.

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    Digital Avatar bundle

    Get all of the above PDF comics (over 120+ pages, including the two Camp Bitter Lake stories), your name in the book, AND Julie will draw you a personalized, full-color headshot to use as an avatar/profile pic on social media sites.

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    Pitch Consult bundle!

    Get all of the above PDF comics (over 120+ pages of comics goodness, including the two Camp Bitter Lake stories), your name in the book, AND get a pitch consult on your comic or graphic novel — with one round of revisions — from Jim, an Eisner and Harvey Award-winning editor.

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