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It's This Modern World's 25th anniversary -- and I want to celebrate by publishing a two-volume compilation of ALL THE CARTOONS!
It's This Modern World's 25th anniversary -- and I want to celebrate by publishing a two-volume compilation of ALL THE CARTOONS!
3,098 backers pledged $310,537 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$310,537

3,098

Twenty-five years of This Modern World!

I'm the creator of This Modern World, the weekly cartoon of political and social satire that runs on Daily Kos and the Nation, and has been a mainstay of alt-weekly newspapers around the country since 1990. I've won the Herblock Prize, the Aronson Award, the RFK Journalism Award (twice), and this year, I was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

UPDATE: And now that we've met our funding goal (in 21.5 hours, WOO HOO!) I thought I'd better move the stretch goals up higher on the page. 

—I would really love to give the slipcover a spectacular 3-D lenticular cover--ACHIEVED!  (Adding: this was an ambitious idea and we are working to make it happen—but I'm going to reserve the right to bail on it if I have any hesitation about the probable quality of the final product.)

—Currently, the book covers my work through the end of 2014, but we can add everything I've done this year, right up until we send it to the printer--ACHIEVED!

—I've designed a DIY model of Sparky in his 1958 Nash Metropolitan, which we can print and include with every order--ACHIEVED!

—I have a cool design ready to go for printed endpapers--ACHIEVED!

NEW! The MTT team and I talked it over and we've decided we made a Very Bad Call by not including my children's book, the Very Silly Mayor. If we hit $165K, we'll add the pages to volume two and make this the TRULY complete Tom Tomorrow compendium!--ACHIEVED!!!

—NEW! If we hit $200K we'll include a 5 inch tall die-cut vinyl weatherproof RANTING SPARKY STICKER with every copy of the book!--ACHIEVED!

—NEW! At $225K, we'll include a die-cut vinyl DRONEY sticker with every copy of the book! -- ACHIEVED!

AND—to truly commemorate this moment, if we reach the absurd level of $250,000, I hereby vow to you that I will post a video of myself getting a tattoo of Sparky the Penguin—ACHIEVED! I'm researching tattoo artists and will try to do this in late August or early September! Thank you everyone, this is astonishing! 

ONE MORE: Just to keep this train chugging down the track til we hit the end of the line on Tuesday— if we reach the even more absurd level of $300,000, I will throw a book launch event at the historic Mark Twain House in Hartford, Ct.! If you're in the Northeast, you'll be able to celebrate the publication of 25 Years of Tomorrow in the house Mark Twain built!

Looking forward!
Looking forward!

I've done a lot of work over the last 25 years! I've written more than 1,500 cartoons, published ten cartoon anthologies and a children's book, and had cartoons featured in the New York Times, the New Yorker, U.S. News & World Report, Esquire, and Spin, just to name a few. I even worked with Pearl Jam to create the art for their 2009 album, Backspacer.

Backspacer cover
Backspacer cover

When I realized I was coming up on this major anniversary —25 years!—I decided I wanted to do something big to mark the moment.

REALLY big.

Like, a thousand pages, two volumes, fifteen POUNDS big. 

This giant two-volume set will feature every cartoon I've ever done: my weekly strip, work I did for magazines, one-offs, rarities, illustrations, you name it. There's some early, non-TMW work that hasn't been seen by anyone in decades, if ever—including experiments with collage, single panel gag cartoons, and even an attempt at a syndicated daily comic strip from the 1980s. I'm including some of the interviews I've done over the years, and to put things in context I've gone through and added extensive annotation to many of the cartoons. I have several pages on the Pearl Jam collaboration, including photos and art that have never been made public before. And of course, there are the cartoons themselves—a contemporary satirical history of everything we've been through over the past 25 years, through the eyes of an acerbic penguin with weird sunglasses.

Mockup, not final product.
Mockup, not final product.
The historic first appearance of Sparky the Penguin.
The historic first appearance of Sparky the Penguin.

Even if you have some of my older books, you've never seen my work like this before.

This project is my entire career in book form. It's a labor of love, and I'm doing it here on Kickstarter because no serious publisher would touch it with a ten foot pole. A two volume, thousand page hardcover compilation for the weirdo alt-weekly guy? They'd laugh me out of the building. To be honest, most publishers don't even think there's a market anymore for the standard 112-page compilations I used to put out every couple of years.

With your help, we can prove them really, really wrong!

Rarities!
Rarities!
More rarities!
More rarities!
And even rarer rarities!
And even rarer rarities!

As you can see, we have a lot of cool rewards lined up. You can get a copy of my children's book, The Very Silly Mayor, which is the only major work I've done that's NOT included in this retrospective. I have some original (pre-digital) strips from the 1990s to give away. And I've got some amazing collectibles for Pearl Jam fans, including vinyl Backspacer albums signed by all five members of the band, not to mention a guitar from Eddie Vedder's personal collection, which he has signed and drawn on! (There are images of many of these rewards at thismodernworld.com/kickstarter.)

Hanging out with some friends.
Hanging out with some friends.
Relive the worst years of our lives, in wacky cartoon form!
Relive the worst years of our lives, in wacky cartoon form!
TMW in the streets!
TMW in the streets!

Now, I know: $87K is a big ask. But this is a BIG book. It's starting out in the red, as I've already been working intensively with a layout person and others on the Make That Thing team for the past year. And then there are the actual costs of printing and shipping this monster, which are not remotely cheap—did I mention that it's a THOUSAND PAGES LONG and will weigh FIFTEEN POUNDS?—as well as all the other unavoidable random expenses, like printing proofs and video editing and Kickstarter fees and credit card processing fees and on and on.  We've gone over the numbers thoroughly, trying to figure out the lowest goal we can ask for and still make this book a reality, and this is where we landed. (I myself literally won't make a dime on this project unless we surpass our basic goal.) (UPDATE: Which we have now done!)

I've been working on this project for more than a year, digging deep into my archives, going through files on my hard drive and boxes of clips I haven't looked at in years, and getting it all sorted out and organized. This is my dream project, the culmination of a quarter century of my life—but boy, do I need a lot of help to make it happen! This work means a lot to me, and I hope it's meant something to you over the years. Pledge now, and before you know it your mail carrier will be cursing my name as he or she lugs this monster to your door!

Up-to-the-minute 2015 comics!
Up-to-the-minute 2015 comics!
Prove Future Sparky wrong!
Prove Future Sparky wrong!

Risks and challenges

I'm partnering with Make That Thing to produce and fulfill this campaign. They have a ton of experience with stuff like this. We're already in talks with a printer that can handle such an unwieldy project, and the book files are about 99% compiled and designed. Life is unpredictable, but I don't anticipate any significant delays or complications.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About $1.00

    Pledge $1 or more to help me make this dream a reality! You'll have my sincere gratitude!

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    Pledge US$ 30 or more About $30

    THE PDF: A DRM-free digital copy of the 1,000 page collection 25 YEARS OF TOMORROW. Also includes a six-month subscription to the TMW email subscription list, SPARKY'S LIST* (or for current subscribers: a gift subscription for a friend or relative!).

    *SPARKY'S LIST is a subscription-only weekly email list which gives readers an advance look at each new cartoon, along with additional commentary and links.

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    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    THE BOOK: The two-volume hardcover book, 25 YEARS OF TOMORROW! 1,000 pages in an attractive slipcase! Weighs approximately 15 pounds! Contains 1,500 cartoons, give or take, plus numerous rarities! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    SIGNED AND STAMPED EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, using a special ink-stamp which will be designed exclusively for TMW 25, and destroyed afterward! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    SILLY MAYOR EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND a copy of the children's book, THE VERY SILLY MAYOR. It's the only major work by Tom not included in the two-volume retrospective. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    T-SHIRT EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND your choice of either a Sparky or Droney t-shirt. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

    Images at thismodernworld.com/kickstarter
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    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    STUFFED SPARKY EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND a plush Sparky the Penguin to snuggle while you read! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    SIGNED PRINT EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND a special limited edition, signed and numbered 8.5 x 11" print of the Oct. 8, 2014 TMW cartoon, "Hashtags are Weapons of War!" Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    POSTER ROULETTE EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND a randomly selected rare poster from Tom's archives! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription. Posters may have slight edge wear.

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    VEDDER SHOW POSTER EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS an 18x24 silk screened poster by Tom Tomorrow for Eddie Vedder's Nov. 30, 2012 Ft. Lauderdale show with Glen Hansard, signed and numbered by Tom Tomorrow. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    DOGGIE DINER EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS an approximately 17x22 print of Tom's rare ATTACK OF THE DOGGIE DINER HEADS print, signed but not numbered. Posters are printed in archival ink on fine art paper. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    MATEWAN EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow, AND an original movie poster from the film MATEWAN personally autographed to you by director John Sayles and producer Maggie Renzi. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    BACKSPACER PRINTER'S PROOF POSTER EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and stamped by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS a poster-sized printer's proof of the printed Backspacer album cover artwork, with two images of the album cover and various color registration marks, on 28x40 paper stock. NOTE: THERE IS NO ALBUM INCLUDED. These are the proofs the printer sent to me and to the band for final approval right before the print run. Ultra rare -- unless you are friends with the band, there is nowhere else to get these. PLEASE see the photos at the link below for details (there is no center "brain" image because of the die-cut.) Proofs may have slight wrinkling. Signed to you personally by Tom Tomorrow. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    BACKSPACER EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a vinyl copy of Pearl Jam's album, Backspacer, with the album cover SIGNED BY ALL FIVE MEMBERS OF THE BAND! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

    Note: we make no guarantees as to the condition of the vinyl — no returns in case of imperfections.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    ORIGINAL STRIP EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS an original This Modern World strip from the 1990s, composed of xerography, pen and ink, and zip-a-tone! Tom has worked digitally since 2000, so there's a finite supply of these. Backers choose from 10 available strips, in order of pledging. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    ZIPPY THE PINHEAD EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS an original Zippy strip donated by legendary comics artist Bill Griffith, and a signed copy of Bill's book THE DINGBURG DIARIES! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    LEMONY SNICKET EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS a complete hardcover set of all 13 SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS books by LEMONY SNICKET, signed personally to you by the author. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    INTO THE WILD EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow! PLUS a sealed promo-only INTO THE WILD vinyl picture disc with bonus 7" and lyric booklet. You collectors know how rare this one is! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    RARE PICKS EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a vinyl copy of Pearl Jam's album, Backspacer, SIGNED BY THE BAND!

    You'll also get seven guitar picks designed for Eddie Vedder by Tom (White Futura, Black Futura, White Sparky, Black Sparky, Batmobile, Batgirl, Edved). Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    NSA EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a set of two ultra-rare NSA satire posters Tom designed for RSA Data Security in the mid-nineties, which have become sought-after collectibles in security geek circles! Only one set available! Posters are in good (but not mint) condition, with slight edge wear and one small 1/8" tear on one of them. Posters signed on request! Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    SIGNED/WAVE ART TAMBOURINE EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, and a non-stage-used, tambourine with Eddie Vedder signature and wave art in black and silver sharpie. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    WHITE VINYL, RARE PICKS EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a limited-edition WHITE vinyl copy of Pearl Jam's album, Backspacer, with album cover SIGNED BY THE BAND!

    You'll also get all the guitar picks in the RARE PICKS EDITION, plus three more: Stone and Mike Backspacer picks, and the ULTRA RARE JEFF BACKSPACER TRAIN PICK. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    SIGNED/WAVE ART SNARE DRUMHEAD EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, and white snare drumhead with Eddie Vedder signature and wave art in black and silver sharpie. Approx. 14 inches, two are all white, one has a dot in the center as shown at link below — since these are being shipped directly to backers from Seattle we cannot guarantee which version you will get. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    RIDE THE RAILS EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow. AND Tom Tomorrow will travel anywhere within a three-hour train ride of New Haven, CT to give a presentation for your event or organization about 25 Years of Tomorrow!* Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription. (Contingent upon approval, PLEASE MESSAGE US BEFORE PLEDGING.)

    *Train fare and hotel not included and will be billed separately. Actual date of talk will be a mutually agreed-upon date sometime in 2016.

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    SIGNED TAMBOURINE EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a stage-used tambourine signed by Eddie Vedder. These tambourines were used in the Milton Keynes show outside London in 2014, and are donated from Ed's personal collection. Each tambourine will come with a handwritten note from Ed certifying its authenticity. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, and an approx. 18" clear drumhead with Eddie Vedder signature and wave art in black and silver sharpie. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    DOMESTIC AIR EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow. AND Tom Tomorrow will fly anywhere within the continental U.S. to give a presentation for your event or organization about 25 Years of Tomorrow!* Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription. (Contingent upon approval and logistics, please contact us before pledging.)

    *Airfare and hotel not included and will be billed separately. Actual date of talk will be a mutually agreed-upon date sometime in 2016.

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    SIGNED EDDIE VEDDER GUITAR EDITION: You'll get the hardcover book, with a bookplate signed and SKETCHED by Tom Tomorrow, AND a one-of-a-kind Harmony Sovereign acoustic guitar generously donated by Eddie Vedder from his personal collection to help us raise these funds! Ed has signed the guitar with the inscription, "This old guitar…" and drawn a wave on it. Also included are photos of him holding it, as well as a two-page handwritten note from him explaining its history. It was used at home and in Hawaii for many years, and the song "Off He Goes" was written on this guitar. Guitar is provided "as is," of course—Ed's note also explains that "the action on this guitar was never great, but the sound was perfect…now the action is even worse cause it's having neck issues, but it will always be an old friend to me." Comes with a soft case.

    This reward also includes all ten Pearl Jam guitar picks: White Futura, Black Futura, White Sparky, Black Sparky, Batmobile, Batgirl, Edved, Mike Backspacer, Stone Backspacer, and ultra-rare Jeff Train Backspacer. Also includes the PDF and six-month email subscription.

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Funding period

- (30 days)