Crash Philosophy: Speculative-Fiction Short Story Collection
10 characters. 10 settings. 100 fictional possibilities. Choose your own story in this sci-fi short-story collection: Crash Philosophy.
Crash Philosophy: Speculative-Fiction Short Story Collection
10 characters. 10 settings. 100 fictional possibilities. Choose your own story in this sci-fi short-story collection: Crash Philosophy.
If you could select your character and setting, what would you find? Choose your own story with “Crash Philosophy.”
Hello, I’m Thomas A. Fowler, Author of Nerdy Things. I’m creating an anthology called “Crash Philosophy” alongside over two-dozen amazing authors and writers! Our goal is to create a printed and digital experience to give you, the reader, the power to choose your story!
It’s been 20 years since a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book was published. 20 years! At Nerdy Things Publishing, we want to create a new reading experience that embraces a new way people can choose their story. With 10 characters and 10 settings, 100 fictional possibilities are at your fingertips!
I originally wanted to create an anthology about dinosaurs, but there’d be little to it that’d disrupt the anthology market. I wanted to do something more. And there was my answer: do more. So I sat down with dozens of potential characters and settings and decided to make this weird collaboration.
With this anthology, you choose one of the characters (Alien, Clown, Dinosaur, Great White Shark, Human Baby, Imaginary Friend, Kaiju, Keytarist, Psycho Killer and Robot Assassin) then you place them in one of the settings (Alternate Future, Apocalyptic Wasteland, Evil Laboratory, Flying Prison, Human Mind, Ocean, Pet Store, School, Space, and Triassic). Then you can do this 99 more times!
This gives you the power to decide which combinations to read. And with a diverse group of authors, you’re going to get a lot of different voices, approaches, and narrative structures even. It’s something the world hasn’t quite seen yet and I couldn’t be more excited to share this with you.
The great thing is backing us also gives you the ability to vote on future characters and settings. Backers at all levels will get access to early voting to help determine the next 5 characters and settings in the Second Collision!
I did everything in my power to make sure every reward level has its own unique set of offerings that go above and beyond the average anthology incentive from subtle additions like Desktops and Wallpapers for your computer or smartphone on the lower tiers to different posters that can include autographs from the entire team to marketing services from yours truly. If you love science-fiction and quirky storytelling, I truly believe that one of these tiers can work for you!
One of the really exciting things is our book release. I wanted it to be as unique as the anthology so we're releasing the book at the Alamo Drafthouse where we'll be screening Deep Blue Sea, an awesome sci-fi action movie that matches one of our combinations, "Great White Shark in an Evil Laboratory!" There are multiple tiers, varying from tickets for the event only to deluxe packages with VIP seating, SWAG, and first access to author autographs.
There are a number of bonus items you can add to any pledge, all you have to do is add the additional amount to your pledge and you will be able to add any specifications necessary such as preferred character or size.
- 11x17" Poster: Add $10
- Journal: Add $12
- Coffee Mug: Add $15
- Socks: Add $20
- Oversized 24"36 Poster: Add $30
Our calendar will be extensive, and should occur as follows:
- February 28: Kickstarter Launches
- March 28: Kickstarter Ends
- March 29: Story Edits and Website Construction Begins
- April 6: Surveys Go Out to Backers for Any Customized Options (Applies only to certain tiers)
- April 14: Surveys due.
- April 20: Final Edits Complete
- April 23: Books and SWAG Items Ordered
- May 17: Book Release Event at Alamo Drafthouse
- May 18: Worldwide Book Release
- June 29: All Shipped Items Received
FIRST STRETCH GOAL: $10,500
Themed Buttons & Increased Contributor Pay & Choose a Cosplay
The first stretch goal will give themed buttons to every backer at the live event or receive a shipped package. The remaining funds after creating the buttons will be distributed among the authors and contributors to get compensation closer to pro-rates!
In addition, backers will get the ability to choose one of Thomas A. Fowler's cosplays for Denver Comic Con! You'll get choices to decide how he'll show up one day at the biggest convention in his homestate!
SECOND STRETCH GOAL: $12,750
Character Collision Chapbook & Catered Release Event & Spicy A.M.A.
If we reach the second stretch goal, every backer will receive a chapbook (small book) as a bonus edition that tells the story of all ten characters coming together in all settings. Consider it "The Avengers" of Crash Philosophy. Why are they all together? Can they coexist? Let's find out and reach this next goal! Also, this stretch goal lets the book release event at the Alamo Drafthouse be catered with delicious treats!
THIRD STRETCH GOAL: $17,000
Sticker Set & Second Collision & a Cover Rendition of "Under Pressure" sung by me, doing impressions of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Ian McKellen
If we reach this lofty third stretch goal, we'll have enough to go immediately into production on the second collision, introducing 5 new characters and 5 new settings, resulting in 125 new stories because the "O.G. Ten" will need to remain involved. Each collision results in an exponentially expanding universe, and you can help build it! All backers will receive a discount on purchasing the Second Collision when it becomes available in eBook and Printed edition.
We'll also do a complete sticker collection for all backers receiving shipments or attending the release event. We'll do stickers of all ten characters to decorate whatever you'd like.
FINAL STRETCH GOAL: $25,000
Double the Characters & Settings in the Second Collision + Choose My Tattoo!
If we reach this immense stretch goal, then we'll double the Second Collision and begin production after launching the First Collision book and experience. This will mean 10 new characters, and 10 new settings, resulting in 300 new story combinations.
In addition, all backers will get to vote on which one of the characters Fowler will get a tattoo of and where it goes! Do you want to see an Alien on my back? The Kaiju on my shoulder? Back the campaign, spread the word and then you'll have the power to decide!
Thomas A. Fowler (Author & Crash Philosophy Creator) saw Jurassic Park at the age of 11. It was all nerdy as hell from there. Especially when he stuck around for the end credits and saw “Based on the novel by Michael Crichton.” He went straight from the movie theater, walked down the mall to a Walden Books. Since then, he’s written movies, plays, short-stories and books. While he sticks primarily to science-fiction, he dabbles elsewhere. He holds an MBA in Marketing from Regis University and was a former Content Creator at a full-service ad agency in Denver, Colorado. Now, he devotes that skill set to a freelance career and to helping authors live their dream of getting published. Somewhere, between writing and advertising, he tries to be a loving husband and responsible father.
Melissa Koons (Author and Editor) has always had a passion for books and creative writing. It may have started with Berenstain Bears by Stan and Jan Berenstain, but it didn’t take long for authors like Lucy Culliford Babbit, Tolkien, and Robert Jordan to follow. From a young age, she knew she wanted to share her love for stories with the world. She has written and published one novel, multiple short stories, and poetry. She has a BA in English and Secondary Education from the University of Northern Colorado. A former middle and high school English teacher, she now devotes her career to publishing, editing, writing, and tutoring hoping to inspire and help writers everywhere achieve their goals. When she's not working, she's taking care of her two turtles and catching up on the latest comic book franchise.
Bryon Taylor (Web Developer) has been involved with technology and production of content for over almost 30 years. In the years leading up to the mainstream adoption of the Internet in 1992, he developed multi-node bulletin board systems and dial-in messaging communities. In 1992 Taylor began developing websites and applications. Taylor created and managed digital programs, strategy, and social media efforts for all brands. His digital projects won four Webby’s, several FWA’s, nominations @ SXSW three years in a row, various press attention including a cover spot on the Commart’s Interactive Annual, and other awards and recognitions spanning multiple brands.
Harry Forehand III (Cover & Graphic Designer) started designing as a child, he has been designing professionally for over 20 years now. Starting with a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Arizona, his career took off in Las Vegas where he did re-branding and re-imagining of the MGM Resorts International properties. From their restaurants to clubs, spas, and specialty stores, his design work garnered numerous awards. After more influential designs, including the Andre Agassi Foundation logo, he took his experience to the Colorado. There, he became the Design Director at Vladimir Jones for numerous years. There he worked on design for Bristol Brewing Company, Dixie Elixirs, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Centura Health, among others. His obsessive passion for soccer merged with his career when he did the design work for the Colorado Switchbacks. Now if Daft Punk would let him design an album, his design bucket list will be near complete. His work has been featured in many logo and design publications, including the prestigious HOW Magazine, Logo Lounge and Los Logos series, resulting in a portfolio spanning multiple non-profits and business categories. When he’s not designing, he can be found coaching soccer teams or procuring the latest music not found on the radio.
Scott Beckman is the author of the high fantasy Sathakos series and the stand-alone novel, Pantheon. He writes because he likes to imagine far more interesting worlds than our own. Worlds with gods who give their followers superpowers or dragons that build mountain cities, where adventure is always just over the hill and through the dale, and where young heroes explore and discover their fantastic environments for themselves. These are worlds that only exist in imagination, but maybe they could be real, if only we could find them.
Scott lives in Denver, Colorado with his cat, Evie. He enjoys a daily cup of coffee, a weekly exercise regimen, a regular bottle of gin or whiskey, and the occasional trip to far-off places. His biggest influences are Tolkien, Palahniuk, Vonnegut, LeGuin, and McCarthy. He believes there's nothing more awkward in the world than having people look at you while they sing to you, though writing about yourself in the third-person comes close.
J. M. Butler is an adventurer, author, and attorney who never outgrew her love for telling stories and playing in imaginary worlds. Her current publications include tales such as Identity Revealed (Tue-Rah Chronicles), Locked (A Tue-Rah Story), Alone (A Tue-Rah Story), Mermaid Bride, Through the Paintings Dimly, Why Yes, Bluebeard, I’d Love To, and more, including the soon to be released other stories set within the Tue-Rah world such as Cursed and The Red Fire Dragon. For the most part, she writes speculative fiction with a heavy focus on multicultural high fantasy and suspenseful adventures. She lives with her husband and law partner, James Fry, in rural Indiana where they are quite happy with their four cats.
J.A. Campbell: When Julie is not writing she’s often out riding horses, or working sheep with her dogs. She lives in Colorado with her three cats, Kira and Bran, her border collies, her Traveler-in training, Triska, and her Irish Sailor. She is the author of many Vampire and Ghost-Hunting Dog stories the Tales of the Travelers series, and many other young adult books. She also appears in the best selling anthology, Humans Wanted. She’s a member of the Horror Writers Association and the Dog Writers of America Association and the editor for Story Emporium fiction magazine. Find out more at http://www.writerjacampbell.com.
Mike Cervantes is a graduate of creative writing and communication from The University of Texas at El Paso. He is a humorist, a cartoonist, a steampunk enthusiast, a regular contributor to Denver's many local conventions, and just a swell person besides. He writes and publishes stories featuring his steampunk hero characters "The Scarlet Derby and Midnight Jay" regularly on his website, TheScarletDerby.com.
Beverly Coutts lives in the Denver area with her husband and three unruly dogs. She loves to read and write, and has published short stories and poetry. She has her Master’s degree in Economics and works as a budget analyst for the State of Colorado when she’s not writing. She enjoys her work more than any normal human should.
Heather Cowley was born and raised in Northern Colorado where she currently resides with her loving boyfriend and three adoring fur babies. She discovered her love of writing in Mrs. Girardi’s 2nd grade class at Washington Core Knowledge, and from then until high school graduation signed up for every creative writing class offered. In order to break through the inevitable writer’s block that plagues all writers, she spends her time crocheting and learning guitar. She is currently holed up at a desk in the library working on her novel.
Thomas A. Fowler is the creator of Crash Philosophy and wrote a bunch of the stories because initially, he was insane enough to think he could write 100 short stories by himself. He has since redacted said notion. See his full bio in the Team area. Learn about everything he writes at NerdyThingsPublishing.com.
Author L.J Hachmeister writes and fights—though she tries to avoid doing them at the same time. The WEKAF world champion stick-fighter is best known in the literary world for her epic science fiction series, Triorion, and her equally epic love of sweets. Connect with her at: www.triorion.com
Emily Godhand is a dark fantasy author who lives in Denver, Colorado and runs Black Rat Books. Her office staff include her three rats, Chaos, Order, and Illuminati, and a black cat who bribes her with socks. Read all about ghosts, chaos magick, and surviving death, and ignore the subsequent nightmares. Despite the rumors, Emily does not worship the Elder Gods and is not responsible for the strange bumps in the night. Learn more at http://emilygodhand.com.
C. L. Kagmi is an award-winning and bestselling writer of short science fiction. She holds a degree in Neuroscience from the University of Michigan, and spent five years working in clinical research before striking out as a full-time freelance editor. She now offers courses and e-books on publishing, science, and worldbuilding for writers at WorldBuildingCoach.com. Her short story "The Drake Equation" was a winner of the Writers of the Future contest and appeared in the bestselling anthology "Writers of the Future Vol. 33" in 2017. Her other short stories have appeared in issues 2 and 5 of Compelling Science Fiction, the "Event Horizon" anthology of short stories eligible for the Campbell Award, and have been translated for the Vietnamese-language fanzine SFVN.
Carolyn Kay is a scientist by day, and an author, dancer, knitter, and herbalist by night. She's attempting to raise two fine felines with the help of her husband, illustrator Chaz Kemp. (The results are mixed. *Looking at you, Sif.*) She also occasionally channels a fae changeling named Cinder who posts guest blogs on her website. Her debut novella, “Dien-Vek” is available on Amazon. You can catch up on Carolyn’s latest shenanigans at carolynkayauthor.com, or on Twitter and Instagram @bewitchinghips.
Kimberly Keane lives a secret life playing with data sets, caring for her four-legged, furry dragon, and answering non-existential questions for her adult children like: “How do taxes work,” “What’s a copay,” and “Should I opt out of my 401k plan?” She also writes speculative fiction and spends an inordinate amount of time in coffee and tea shops.
Kimberly Kennedy, a romance writer, has always been a creative soul, bouncing back and forth between various crafts and arts. The only one she kept bouncing back to was writing. Being an only child meant creating her own worlds, full of characters that were a combination of people she knew and quirky qualities she thought more of us should have. She now lives in Denver, as a real life romantic heroine, having a blast vacationing, writing, trying out the amazing culinary and beer centered landscape that is Colorado, loving the mountains, and motoring around in her little grey Barbie car convertible.
Jason Kent is an Air Force veteran, Amazon Best Selling author, and military space expert. From launching rockets to great new sci-fi, he’s got you covered! Combating government bureaucracy and military budgeting cycles, he became an expert at systems engineering, designing space systems, and launching billion-dollar rockets. Along the way, Jason nurtured a passion for exploration beyond Earth’s atmosphere and yearned to go where no one has gone before! Unfortunately, the U.S. Space Corps has yet to be formed, leading him to the inevitable conclusion the best way to visit the stars was to write about them. Jason is a licensed professional engineer with experience in diverse mission areas such as reconnaissance, engineering, space and launch vehicle operations, space system acquisition, and missile defense. Each of his assignments broadened his experience in real-world space technology and space business ventures. Jason’s books include Kindle #1 Best Seller New Sky: Eyes of the Watcher, New Season: Sparrow’s Quest, Rifter: Traitors at Teteris, Colony Zero: Quarantine Protocol, and Far Space.
A.L. Kessler is an Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance author best known for her Amazon Best selling Here Witchy Witchy series. She lives in beautiful Colorado Springs with her family and handful of animals. She can be bribed to come out of her office with gifts of chocolate and coffee.
Melissa Koons wrote several stories for Crash Philosophy, and is the Editor and Formatter as well. See her full bio and photo in the Team area.
Aylâ is the creative mind and copywriter behind numerous award-winning and nationally-recognized advertising campaigns for Colorado-based clients. When she’s not being clever with words, she can be found discussing great film and television, singing like an angel and ranting about mayonnaise. Right now, Aylâ is probably wearing a Disney t-shirt and laughing about a pun she heard two days ago. Learn more at aylawithahat.com.
David Munson is an American fantasy author born in October of 1982 in Bountiful Utah. He graduated from Layton High School 2001. Later he went on to attend The University of Utah and Weber State University, both in Northern Utah. David now lives and works in Northern Colorado with his wife Cara, and four children. Ben, Alex, Emily, and Zach. With the encouragement of friends and professors, David began creating the world of Ellspire. It all started with a sheet of paper and some colored pencils, and of course unrelenting imagination. David enjoys all kinds of fantasy writing and fantasy art. He is open to almost any form of fiction and loves a new adventure. When his hours are not spent on writing they are devoted to geeking out over movies, board games, or the latest video games. David is mechanically minded and often can be found working in the garage on just about anything that can be taken apart and put back together. He also enjoys time spent with several different writing groups and encourages creative writing in any form. Imagination is a wonderful gift that needs to be cultivated and shared.
In September 2017 Jennifer Ogden finally listened to the call to write that had followed her around since she was a little girl. She took a leap of faith and quit her soul sucking nine to five job. Now, she enjoys spending her days crafting words into stories. She believes it takes courage to live life, laughter to bring joy, and love to see hope. Learn more at http://somanybooks.info.
Marianne Page is an actress, writer, and editor living in the Denver area. She's studied theatre in college and earned her BA in English from Metropolitan State University of Denver. She's currently working on editing her first novel, The Maverick, a dark fantasy story about the life of a thief and killer. Learn more at http://www.mariannepage.net.
Rebecca Parker writes marketing and PR content for the University of Denver by day. By night, she aspires to the mad man’s calling: Pretty decent fiction. She lives in Denver, where she’s adopted an outdoorsy life her parents still can’t believe. She’s published in the Gmail inboxes of her writer’s group and many patient friends.
M. M. Ralph is an author and all around creative intuitive living in Denver, Colorado. She is grateful to be a part of Crash Philosophy, major thanks to Thomas A. Fowler and thanks you for your interest. She invites you to connect with her on social media for more information on upcoming projects.
Sarah Beth Schriver is a student at the University of Colorado Boulder and has previously been published in Plains Paradox Literary Journal and models for NxtlMODEL in Denver. She currently lives in Longmont with her family.
TJ Valour’s invisible pet dinosaur landed her in the principal's office in second grade, and it has been a rollercoaster of adventure ever since. At work she dances with death and has the honor of recording her client’s last chapters of life. When not working, TJ is crafting fantastical urban stories from the safety of her desk. TJ lives in the Rocky Mountains with her wonderful spouse and handsome but thick-headed doggo.
Rob Walker is a failed birthday magician and former funeral DJ, probably best known for his animated sketch comedy series Victorian Cut-out Theatre. He writes stories, jokes, sketches and screenplays. He currently lives in Colorado with his wife, son and their two socially inept cats.
- Melanie Bryant
- Jason Evans
- H.L. Huner
Risks and challenges
Thankfully almost all the stories are already done, so the hardest part is over. We’re getting a few stories picked up after a few authors had to drop out. But in editing and formatting, we always run the risk of the project capacity going over the limit or the website taking longer to build than we currently estimated in the pre-production stages.
However, the team I have assembled are all professionals I’ve worked with on various other projects. I couldn’t imagine a tougher group.
One of the risks I took on was including the book release event. It increased the costs by a decent amount. I also had to book in advance, meaning I have a non-refundable deposit made so I’m kind of willing the universe to get us funded! The added costs result in a bigger challenge than if I’d made the event a stretch goal. But then people would have to buy tickets separately afterward and the logistics seemed excessive. However, the event will be a blast and I made a point of making sure those who come to the event are the ones paying for it. If you don’t buy a ticket to the release, then you aren’t picking up any costs for that event. The reward tiers are effectively exclusive to make sure you get what you pay for.
- (30 days)