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A comics series dealing with bullying, to be distributed free by organizations such as GLAAD, Stand for the Silent, and Prism Comics.
A comics series dealing with bullying, to be distributed free by organizations such as GLAAD, Stand for the Silent, and Prism Comics.
A comics series dealing with bullying, to be distributed free by organizations such as GLAAD, Stand for the Silent, and Prism Comics.
285 backers pledged $11,168 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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RISE: Comics Against Bullying

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THE PROJECT

Comic books have always brought people together. Whether it's geeking out over the latest Avengers issue with your friends or sharing classic comics with the next generation, these stories continue to unite us and start conversations. The anthology series RISE aims to do just that, around the very serious topic of bullying.

In 2014, 1 in 3 students claimed to have been bullied and, unfortunately, a UCLA study found that kids doing the bullying are still seen as "cool." Bullying, in other words, is a persistent and very real problem that we need to be vigilant in addressing.

RISE, a multi-issue anthology comic book series written and drawn by a collection of established names and up-and-comers, aims to spark conversations and provide resources for at-risk youth in an accessible and engaging format.

Each contributor to the series has donated their time and resources, and every story has a different point-of-view and addresses a different audience.

This is an exciting anthology project in its own right, but also a not-for-profit endeavor; while issues of the series are being sent out as rewards for this Kickstarter, they will simultaneously be distributed free by our partner organizations to schools, libraries and to anyone that needs them.

Each issue of RISE will contain information about how to reach out for help as well as ways to support our partner organizations.

We've assembled a list of fantastic contributors, including talents like:

  • Marc Guggenheim (ArrowGreen Lantern)
  • Howard Chaykin (American FlaggCody StarbuckBlack Kiss)
  • READ THEIR STORY NOW
  • Dawn Griffin (Zorphbert & Fred)
  • Jed Dougherty (Action ComicsGreen Lantern: New Guardians
  • Chris Roberson (iZombie,Superman, Monkeybrain Comics)
  • Dennis Culver (Edison Rex)
  • Marc Andreyko (TorsoCaptain America & BuckyManhunter)
  • Sina Grace (Li’l Depressed BoyAdventure Time)
  • Paul Castiglia (ArchieTeenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Chris Allan (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Jody Houser (Cupcake POW!)
  • Jean Kang (Womanthology: Space)
  • Jeff Marsick (Newsarama.comZ-Girl and the 4 Tigers)
  • Scott Larson (Bluewater/Moonstone)
  • Erica Schultz (Revenge: The Secret Origin of Emily Thorne)

…and lots more!

THE GOAL

To get this issues of RISE to those who need them, we’re aiming to raise enough funds to print the first two issues in large enough quantity that we can distribute them freely. Our initial plan is to provide:

  • Print copies of RISE for Stand for the Silent to distribute in schools
  • Flyers with digital download codes of the series for Stand for the Silent to distribute after their presentations
  • Print copies of RISE for Prism Comics to use for fundraising and distribution to those who need them
  • Northwest Press will make copies available for sale at low-cost to comics retailers through Diamond Comic Distributors.
  • Additional stock will be made available to our current and future nonprofit partners, moving forward. 

All additional proceeds from the book will be reinvested in the project for printing and distributing additional issues to schools, partner organizations and conventions. Currently, our plans are to go to press with the first two issues of the series and produce the subsequent issues digitally.

OUR PARTNERS

GLAAD

GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBT equality. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to positive change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. For more information, please visit glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.

STAND FOR THE SILENT

Stand for the Silent was started in 2010 by a group of students from the Oklahoma State University- Oklahoma City Upward Bound Chapter after they heard the story of Kirk and Laura Smalley’s son, Ty Field-Smalley. At eleven years-old, Ty took his own life after being suspended from school for retaliating against a bully that had been bullying him for over two years.

Stand for the Silent exists as a platform to allow Kirk and Laura to share their story and offer education and tools that will prevent their tragedy from happening to another child and family. Kirk and Laura’s mission is to continue to change kids’ lives and bring awareness to bullying and the real devastation it causes. Since May 2010, Kirk and Laura Smalley have traveled to hundreds of schools and spoken with more than 833,000 kids. 

In March 2011, Kirk and Laura met privately with President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama in The White House prior to attending the first ever White House conference on bullying. Their story is featured in director Lee Hirsch's feature film, Bully. Kirk and Laura have been invited to a number of conferences on bullying and met with Lady Gaga this spring at the launch of the Born This Way Foundation.

PRISM COMICS

Prism Comics is a nonprofit, all-volunteer organization that supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) comics, creators and readers. The organization was founded in 2003 by a small number of comics fans and professionals from across the United States to provide a safe, welcoming community for LGBT comics professionals and readers. Prism's website offers articles, news, commentary and a comprehensive list of LGBT comics creators. Prism exhibits at and presents panel presentations at comic conventions around the country as well as being involved with other local LGBT events. And Prism is the only organization in the entire comics industry that provides an annual financial grant to aspiring comics creators to publish their work - The Prism Comics Queer Press Grant.

NORTHWEST PRESS

Northwest Press is a book publisher dedicated to publishing the best LGBT comics collections and graphic novels and celebrating the community. It was founded in 2010 by comics writer and LGBT comics activist Charles “Zan” Christensen.

Northwest Press’ mission is to publish quality queer comics work and help rising talents reach wider audiences, and to increase the visibility of LGBT comics in general. In addition to NWP’s original print releases, the company has amassed a great catalog of top-notch digital work, presented with polish and style.

The publisher has produced over a dozen full-length graphic novels and collections, including several award winning books: Teleny and Camille (Lambda Literary Award winner), Anything That Loves (Bisexual Book Award winner), and QU33R (Ignatz Award winner).

Publisher Charles "Zan" Christensen was recognized in OUT Magazine's "OUT 100" with artist Mark Brill for their work on the antibullying comic book The Power Within.

OUR CONTRIBUTORS

  • Adam P. Knave (Amelia Cole, Never Ending) - READ HIS STORY NOW!
  • Amber Love (Shakespeare Shaken, Holyoak, Vodka O’Clock Podcast)
  • Benjamin Bailey (Uncaged, Captain Ultimate, Sonic the Hedgehog)
  • Boy "Boykoesh" Akkerman (Monkeybrain's Captain Ultimate)
  • Brad Bell (Husbands: The Series)
  • Brandon Barrows (Jack Hammer from Action Lab Comics)
  • Brandon J. Carr (The Kenmore, Weird Adventures in Unemployment)
  • Brian Gilman
  • Carolyn Belefski (Curls)
  • Chris Allan (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Chris Haley 
  • Chris Roberson (iZombie, Superman, Monkeybrain Comics)
  • Christian Rubiano (Odessa)
  • Christina Case
  • Commarrah Jewelia Bashar (Barely Managed)
  • Dave Proch
  • Dawn Griffin (Zorphbert & Fred)
  • Dennis Culver (Edison Rex, Davey Jones, Nailbiter)
  • Dirk Manning (Nightmare World, Tales of Mr. Rhee)
  • Don McMillan
  • Doug Arthur
  • Erica Schultz (Revenge: The Secret Origin of Emily Thorne)
  • Geoffrey D. Wessel
  • Holly Interlandi (Lounge Tales)
  • Howard Chaykin (American Flagg, Cody Starbuck, Black Kiss)
  • Jan Velazquez (Zomboy)
  • Jean Kang (Womanthology: Space)
  • Jed Dougherty (Action Comics, Green Lantern: New Guardians)
  • Jeff Marsick (Newsarama.com, Z-Girl and the 4 Tigers)
  • Jeremy Thomas (The Gathering: Public Domain)
  • Jesus Aburto (Iron Man, Punisher, X-Men)
  • Jody Houser (Orphan Black, WomanthologyCupcake POW!)
  • Joe Hunter
  • John Gomes (Ultrasylvania)
  • Jon Carroll (Jesus E. Lee)
  • Jonathan Clode (To End All Wars)
  • Jordan Peters (City Lover)
  • Josh Southall (Switch)
  • Ken Bruzenak (American Flagg!, Powers, Mr. Monster)
  • Kelly Williams (YOLO)
  • Kristopher White
  • Laurent Le Moing
  • Marc Andreyko (Torso, Captain America & Bucky, Manhunter)
  • Marc Guggenheim (Arrow, Green Lantern)
  • Marcus Rocco
  • Marguerite Sauvage
  • Matt Miner (Liberator, Toe Tag Riot)
  • Michelle Hart
  • Miguel Morales
  • Paul Castiglia (Archie, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Paul Salamoff (Discord, Logan's Run, Vincent Price Presents)
  • Rachel Deering (Anathema, Womanthology)
  • Rafer Roberts (Plastic Farm, Nightmare the Rat, Harbinger)
  • Rey Arzeno
  • Scott Larson (Bluewater/Moonstone)
  • Seth Damoose (Xenoholics, Bomb Queen)
  • Shawn Wagner (To End All Wars)
  • Sina Grace (Li’l Depressed Boy, Adventure Time, Penny Dora)
  • Spencer Perry (Superherohype.com)
  • Tio Lavranos
  • Tom Alexander
  • Vasilis K. Pozios, MD

OUR EDITORS

Getting the message out is a reward in and of itself, but it’s always nice to treat yourself to something special in the process.

We've assembled a great list of rewards to thank you for your help in making this project a reality, including digital and print copies of RISE, digital copies of books by our partners and supporters, original artwork, script reviews, professional lettering services, and more.

We're also offering two reward levels that include bundles of copies of the first two issues of RISE, so you can donate them to schools and youth organizations in your area.

• $1 - Seriously, thank you! Every little bit really helps.

• $5 - Your name will be listed on the THANK YOU page in every digital issue of RISE.

(Not final covers.)
(Not final covers.)

• $10 - Digital copies of RISE #1 and #2! (And your name will be listed in the THANK YOU page.)

• $25 - Print copies of RISE #1 and #2! Also includes the $5 and $10 tiers.

• $50 - Everything from the $25 tier PLUS a limited edition art print!

• $75 - A digital comics superpack! In addition to everything in the $50 tier, you receive a MEGABUNDLE of great independent comics from a wide variety of creators, including:

  • M3 #1 by Erica Schultz & Vicente Alcázar
  • FOOTPRINTS Vol. 1 by Joey Esposito & Jonathan Moore
  • CAPTAIN ULTIMATE #1 by Ben Bailey, Joey Esposito, and Boy Akkerman
  • EDISON REX #1 by Chris Roberson & Dennis Culver
  • RUM ROW #1 by Andrew Maxwell & Michele Bandini
  • LOVE MACHINES #1-2 by Josh Trujillo & Various
  • 4 STORIES by Josh Trujillo & Various
  • VIC BOONE: MALFUNCTION MURDER by Shawn Aldridge & Geoffo
  • THE POWER WITHIN by Charles "Zan" Christensen & Mark Brill
  • INVISIBLE SAM by Adam Pruett & David Seltzer
  • KNIGHT WATCHMAN: A LADY IN WAITING by Gary Carlson & CB Burk
  • HERO CODE #1 by Jamie Gambell & Jonathan Rector
  • DEPARTMENT O #1 by Jamie Gambell & Andrew MacLean
  • BLACK WRAITH #1 by G. Brett Williams & Lee Harris
  • FATHER ROBOT #1 by Kristopher White & Sam Garland
  • THE BOOK OF DAVE Artbook by David Seltzer
  • TECTONIC JELLY #1 by Aaron Sullivan
  • CUPCAKE POW! Vol 1 & 2 by Jody Houser
  • THE DOC / BLACKOUT by Andrew Maxwell & John Broglia
  • FLUTTER Vol 1 by Jennie Wood & Jeff McComsey
  • RAINY DAY RECESS by David Kelly, with foreword by Dan Savage
  • TALES OF DISCORD by Paul Salamoff
  • THE THIRTY SIX by Kristopher White
  • COPRA #1 by Michel Fiffe
  • BONUS COMICS by Brandon B.
  • SWITCH by Josh Southall & Al Jinsky
  • Grease Monkeys by Marcus Rocs
  • Orphans by Eric Palicki and Branko Jovanovic

• $100 - 10 copies each of RISE #1 and #2 which you can donate to your local school or youth organization. Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - Super DUPER donation pack! 20 copies each of RISE #1 and #2 which you can donate to your local school or youth organization. Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $130 - INTERNATIONAL donation pack! 10 copies each of RISE #1 and #2 which you can donate to your local school or youth organization. Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - 10 copies each of RISE #1 and #2 and 10 copies of the acclaimed anti-bullying comic THE POWER WITHIN which you can donate to your local school or youth organization. Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $155 - INTERNATIONAL Power Within pack! 10 copies each of RISE #1 and #2 and 10 copies of the acclaimed anti-bullying comic THE POWER WITHIN which you can donate to your local school or youth organization. Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - Our editing team will read and review your writing project and provide constructive feedback and advice! Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - Original 8"x8" pencil and ink drawing by acclaimed artist BRANDON J. CARR! Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - An original 12"x17" color sketch of Archie's KEVIN KELLER by artist/creator DAN PARENT! Kevin Keller is the first openly gay character in Archie Comics history. Also includes all $75 rewards! 

• $100 - An original page of SINA GRACE art (Li'l Depressed Boy, Adventure Time, Penny Dora) from his RISE story with Marc Andreyko titled "Flashback" (which you can read here!). Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $125 - Original 3"x6" character sketch by artist JAN VELAZQUEZ! Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $150 - An original page from Northwest Press' THE POWER WITHIN by Stephen Sadowski, Dan Parent, Greg Rucka & Matthew Clark, Charles "Zan" Christensen & Carla Speed McNeil, or Andy Mangels and Donna Barr! (Backers will be asked for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choice of pieces.) Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $200 - Three beautiful comics collections and five exciting comics from Northwest Press: Bisexual Book Award winner ANYTHING THAT LOVES, Stumptown Award winner THE LEGEND OF BOLD RILEY, the hardcover of the Ignatz Award winning QU33R, plus three issues of the BOLD RILEY ongoing series, the first issue of DASH, and the antibullying title THE POWER WITHIN! Also includes all $75 rewards!

• $250 - Professional letterer ERICA SCHULTZ (Batman Black & White, Blood, Skyward) will letter your comic project! Also includes all $75 rewards!

Music courtesy of www.purple-planet.com

Risks and challenges

Our biggest hurdles have been coordinating with partners and making sure that we have a lot of great stories to include in the series. Now that those tasks are done, it should be pretty straightforward to print and fulfill the books after the Kickstarter concludes.

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    Our heartfelt thanks for your support!

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    SUPER COMICS PACK! You'll get digital copies of a bunch of great comics, donated by supporters. (Check out the growing list in the main text!)

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    NEW REWARD!! An original page of art from Marc Andreyko & Sina Grace's story, "Flashback." (See our updates to read the story!). ALSO includes everything at the $75 level and down.

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    SUPER DONATION PACK! 10 copies each of issues 1 and 2 so you can donate them to your favorite local school or youth organization. (Also includes all rewards above!)

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    SCRIPT REVIEW! Our editing team will read and review your writing project and provide constructive feedback and advice.

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    An original 3"x6" character sketch by artist Jan Velazquez!

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    THE POWER WITHIN PACK! 10 copies each of issues 1 and 2 of RISE, and 10 copies of the acclaimed antibullying comic THE POWER WITHIN so you can donate them to your favorite local school or youth organization. (Also includes all rewards under $125!)

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    An original 8"x8" pencil/ink by artist Brandon J. Carr on bristol. You get to choose the subject (within reason)! ALSO includes everything at the $75 level and down.

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    NEW REWARD!! An original 12"x17" color sketch of Kevin Keller by character creator Dan Parent! Kevin Keller is the first openly gay character in Archie Comics history. ALSO includes everything at the $75 level and down.

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    INTERNATIONAL DONATION PACK! 10 copies each of issues 1 and 2 so you can donate them to your favorite local school or youth organization. (Also includes all $75 rewards!)

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    A page of original, signed artwork from Northwest Press' anti-bullying book THE POWER WITHIN, by Stephen Sadowski, Dan Parent, Greg Rucka and Matthew Clark, Charles "Zan" Christensen and Carla Speed McNeil, or Andy Mangels and Donna Barr. (Backers will be asked for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choice of pieces.)

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    THE INTERNATIONAL POWER WITHIN PACK! 10 copies each of issues 1 and 2 of RISE, and 10 copies of the acclaimed antibullying comic THE POWER WITHIN so you can donate them to your favorite local school or youth organization. (Also includes all $75 rewards!)

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    NORTHWEST PRESS PACK! You'll get three beautiful comics collections and five exciting comics from Northwest Press: Bisexual Book Award winner ANYTHING THAT LOVES, Stumptown Award winner THE LEGEND OF BOLD RILEY, the hardcover edition of the Ignatz-Award-winning anthology QU33R, plus three issues of the BOLD RILEY ongoing series, the first issue of DASH, and acclaimed antibullying comic THE POWER WITHIN. (Also includes all rewards under $125!)

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    Professional letterer Erica Schultz will letter your comic project. (Maximum of 25 pages, and includes lettering only, not production.)

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Funding period

- (30 days)