Laugh It Forward! Comedy & Comics to Change the World!
Two new comedy books and a lifetime of laughter and activism. Because punching Nazis is hard work, but why can't it also be fun?!
Hi, I'm Sam and I'm on a mission to tell everyone why Laughter is a Moral Imperative!
Also, I tell DICK JOKES FOR JUSTICE!
No, seriously, that's my thing, comedy and activism. Some people call it laughtivism.
I've created cartoons and comedy on Woohooligan! since 2006, and more recently satirical blogs and roast-like webcomic reviews on Tumblr. Today I'm creating two new 64-page, full-color books of comedy and laughtivism for you to enjoy!
When I started twelve years ago, I avoided subjects I thought of as political, not because I disliked politics, in fact I was a huge fan of the Daily Show (and many spin-offs). I didn't want to be known as a "political cartoonist" because they're mostly partisan douches, who say things like "a Republican vote is support for the KKK!" or "CFL light-bulbs are killing America!"
In time I realized people mostly responded to the pieces (usually political) that I resisted making, and even then it was months before I embraced it. Now I approach my work as a whole quite differently. I still tell pop-culture and dick jokes, but I do it knowing that they're in service of a greater calling to make the world a better place.
On just about any issue, the odds are you and I have some common ground, and I probably advocate for something you support, whether that's racial or gender equity, GLBT rights, common sense gun laws, or economic justice. And I love hearing from you and working with you on new laughtivist projects! :D
To spread our message of hope and hard-but-fun-work for change in a more practical sense, this Kickstarter will fund two trade paperbacks (a kind of graphic novel). The books are titled Woohooligan Vol. 2: Laugh It Forward and Hellbent Vol 1: Hell If I Know.
Most of the art is complete, previously published on our webcomic, so the only challenges at this point revolve around some pre-press cleanup, printing, shipping and other fulfillment tasks. I'm getting a ton of advice from seasoned Kickstarter creators like Tyler James and Russell Nohelty to make sure I can handle those challenges.
Of course whether or not this Kickstarter funds, I'm going to continue helping people. Because I knew the campaign would bring me some extra exposure, I decided to use it to help out some other great comedians and comic creators as well. So every day I'll be introducing you to two new artists in our artist spotlights. I hope you enjoy their work as well! :D
Woohooligan Vol. 2, like the first volume, will be 64 full-color pages of mostly random comic strips -- some pop culture, some slice of life, some activist-oriented, like my strips on Black History Month or Trickle Down Economics.
Hellbent Vol. 1 will also be 64 full-color pages, the beginning of the ongoing Hellbent story I started in April, 2015. It follows a fairly average Midwestern girl named Amy, who dies on page one, goes to Hell, has a brief stint in Heaven and goes back to Hell. After some binge-drinking and depression, she reinvents herself as the bad girl, Amity Vale, who sleeps with Lucifer (Hell's gay prince of pride) and becomes pregnant (she's dead, what? what?), and is worried that her child will be the Antichrist. Parts of this story also touch on a variety of social commentaries about peer pressures, reputations, religious doctrine vs what we actually think about an afterlife (maybe we could become angels -- do you really want four heads?), etc.
I don't yet have cover images for either of these books, so I'll be relying on you wonderful backers for suggestions about those. :D
In addition to the books themselves, I'm also offering some other great rewards for your pledge, from customized comedy ringtones (tell me what you enjoy, and I'll make it funny), to appearances in the book (die and go to hell with Amity), all the way up to a comedy party at your house or the opportunity to name one of the books!
I've also streamlined the shipping costs for the pledges in this campaign. All the pledge tiers at $10 and below are digital rewards with no shipping, and if you're in the US, or pledging $80 or more, shipping is free! The remaining pledge tiers are all $10 to Canada or $20 to Europe.
The one exception is if you want the Laugh Riot Comedy Jam and you live in Canada. You would not believe the shipping charges on one economy size adult human! I even offered to fit myself into one of those extra-small containers they use, what are they called? Airline seats? Still crazy!
New to Kickstarter?
It's easy! Just pick your rewards on the right and enter your payment information. You'll only be charged after the campaign ends, if we meet our goal. If we fail to meet out funding target, no money will be collected, and we'll talk about how we want to move forward, whether that's with a second campaign or some other way.
Where's the Money Going?
The funds for this project go first to printing for the two new books and reprints of my first book which is sold out. I got quotes from at least six printers (some offset, some on-demand). The more funds we raise, the more books we'll print. While I love that you love my books, they're a side-effect of me trying to make the world a better place. I don't make comedy to sell books. I sell books so I can do more good work. So I factored funds into the budget to reinvest in our mission of laughter or a better world by promoting our newsletter and attending conventions in 2018, which are the best ways to meet new friends and tell them about our cause!
Here's a breakdown of how the money will be spent if we achieve the $1700 funding goal. If we get further than that, then obviously, I'll adjust to account for stretch goals, but most of this should stay about like it is in terms of percentages.
I don't have a ton of stretch goals in mind. I'd like to have a friend of mine draw a few backgrounds to touch up some of the older Hellbent pages that had somewhat sparse backgrounds. That's probably the smallest stretch goal. We might also make some art prints and posters. If we do phenomenally well, we might even see hardcover editions.
Thank you for checking out our work and helping us spread the word! Thank you for educating and protesting (it's an important part of our democracy), and most importantly, thank you for sharing yourself! :D
Risks and challenges
This is the first time I've Kickstarted for a print volume that needs to be shipped, so there could be some hiccups in my expectations or understanding of fulfillment challenges, but no more than for any other creator with their first print campaign. I've been doing a lot of research on the fulfillment side of running a Kickstarter campaign and getting advice from people like Tyler James (Oxymoron, the Red Ten) and Russell Nohelty (Pixie Dust, Monsters and Other Scary Shit), so I think I have the bases covered. I'll also be using a fulfillment service to make managing it a little easier.
Some of the other non-book rewards for this Kickstarter may require a little creative thinking -- the party at your house for example. I'm convinced that with a little effort and my willingness to fly in the luggage compartment, we can work out the rough spots. ;)
I'm also aware that there are some rare cases of declined cards and disputed charges on Kickstarter. In the unlikely worst-case scenario that the final amount is less than needed for printing and shipping, I think we can run a second Kickstarter campaign for the smaller amount to cover the difference. I'll discuss options with backers obviously if it becomes an issue.
Health: Okay, I'd rather not have to mention this, however, I want to be as transparent as I can. I delivered some of the rewards from my first Kickstarter campaign really late. It's something I regret allowing myself to do.
The excuses at the time had to do with my health, a cross-country move, and home repairs. I was in the hospital with diabetes over the last three days of my first campaign. That happened just before my birthday in 2013. :P Immediately after that, I moved my family of seven across country to a house where a ton of immediate repairs demanded that I bury myself in software work. I was real lucky that the backers from that first project were very patient with me. :)
We own the house outright and all our bills and property taxes are current. The most urgent repair work is finished, and my health is better. It's not perfect, I'm not running marathons. I had cancer on my birthday in 2015. :P I got lucky and only needed simple surgery, in-and-out, no radiation, no chemo. And I'm glad it happened, because it lit the fire under my ass about pursuing my passions! :DLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)