With the Unbroken Light Kickstarter ready to launch on September 16, I thought I’d give you all a peek at what the rewards will be. There are the obvious ebooks and paperback copies of Unbroken Light as well as Chasing Shadows, but I’ve been hard at work on additional rewards that will help bring the books to life outside of the text. This is something that I’ve wanted to do for a while, and a successful Kickstarter would make that possible. So before I show you the rewards, I have to say that I would greatly appreciate any and all support on the project, even if it’s just a casual share of a link to your friends. Every little bit counts!! And thank you to everyone who has already expressed interest and / or support for the Kickstarter. That means so much to me, and I can’t wait to share the project once it launches.
And now, on to the good stuff.
If you remember a previous post of mine, I started making planetary posters for the worlds that appear in the Star Hunters universe. I had the worlds of Chasing Shadows completed a few months ago, but I continued on with the worlds of Unbroken Light, and now they’re all finished. Here’s a peek at the ones that represent the planets seen in the second novel:
These are always a fun challenge for me, creating a graphic representation for something that previously only existed in text form, which challenged both my imagination and my drawing skills. Some were easier than others. (Don’t even get me started on the cities…) But anyway. All seven images will be available through the Kickstarter as 11″ x 17″ posters, with opportunities to pledge for 1, 3, or all 7 posters. The 3 and 7 poster pledge tiers will also include a special bonus poster that won’t go back to printing once the campaign is over!
If you follow the link above to the earlier post, you’ll see the three worlds from Chasing Shadows: Phan, Ametria, and Yuna. There are little blurbs about each of those worlds in that post, but here’s a bit of information about the four seen here.
Daanhymn: Once an idyllic world nestled deep within the galactic sector known as the Paradise Void, Daanhymn has been overrun by an aggressive, invasive species of flowering flora. A mutation from early colonist attempts to crossbreed a new, fruit-bearing species, this new flora has taken over the planet. The blue, night-blooming flowers of this mutated plant release large amounts of pollen, which has proven to be toxic to all of Daanhymn’s fauna as well as the colonists that accidentally created it. The mutated plant has begun to root out Daanhymn’s native flora, and the planet has been condemned by the Star Federation. Travel to this world is prohibited, not that anyone has any reason to do so.
Jetune: A harsh, frozen world plagued by bitter winds, Jetune is devoid of life. The planet’s hard crust is gray and cracked but too far from its white sun to receive any warmth, and the atmosphere is so thin that the sky is more black than blue, even at ground level. Starship captains rarely pass anywhere near this planet, no matter what the nature of their business.
Mezora: Large and economically rich, Mezora is a fertile world with a dominant culture that is beyond the grasp of most intelligent life throughout the rest of the galaxy. This is not due to a lack of intelligence, but to Mezora’s historically severe xenophobia. The planetary council has only recently begun to allow off-worlders to immigrate to and settle on Mezora, and integration into the society is difficult at best for those who were not born into the culture. From the strict color-coding of shoulder sashes to the rigid justice and economic systems, Mezora has a complex and rich history that remains alien to a majority of the galaxy. Almost everyone agrees, however, that Mezoran architecture is worth seeing. Built from special materials harvested from the planet’s twin moons, Mezoran cities are filled with twisting, sweeping designs unlike anything else in the known universe. They are a fixture on many “bucket lists,” though travelers should be warned that Mezora declared its independence from the Star Federation long ago, and is outside the military’s jurisdiction. Visitors should study up on the justice system before disembarking.
Sciyat: This small, lunar world is widely regarded as a symbol of peace. It’s gaseous parent planet is inhabitable, but the moon-world Sciyat is a small paradise not totally unlike Earth. Discovered on the heels of the Andromedan War, Sciyat has a much more open policy towards off-worlders, and the lunar world is inhabited by a wide range of species, though humans are the dominant one. Sciyat is economically stable and remarkably peaceful, given the variety of physically and culturally diverse inhabitants. Situated not far from Earth and deep within Star Federation space, the military keeps a special watch on the world, though the moon’s symbolic significance harbors a great deal of respect throughout the galaxy, and there is no real need for Star Federation protection, or any protection outside of a loose, local police force. Sciyat is a favorite living location of retired Star Federation officers, as well as the families of active soldiers.
The posters are great because they’re a way to pique your imagination outside of the book. Or… at least, that’s what I like to think. But, for something that could get a bit more everyday use and still show support for the series, I made a t-shirt design:
The front shows a simple silhouette of a starship, and the back has the insignia of the Star Federation. Designing the Star Fed. logo was a challenge. I had an idea of how I wanted it to look, but every time I tried to execute it, it kept looking confusing and muddled and just not that great. I ended up with this simplified design, but it’s something that I really, really like.
There will probably be a few minor tweaks to this design, mostly regarding the look of the text, but this is pretty much the final look. If you pledge for one of these, you’ll be able to tell the world that you’re a kickass Fleet Commander!
The final thing(s) that I want to show you all are the arkin plushies that I myself will be making for anyone who pledges at the higher tiers. I’ve been working on them for months, but I finally have the end products, just in time for the Kickstarter.
There are two kinds of plushies, a beanie plush, and a quasi-realistic plush.
The beanie plushies will be available in greater quantity. They’re smaller and faster to make, but they do still require finishing by hand and take several hours to complete. But they are super sweet and totally worth it. Take a look!
I actually made a few small changes to the pattern since making that plush, but that is pretty close to the final. The size and proportions are the same, as are the embroidered eyes and feet as well as the safety nose. What’s different are the undersides of the wings and the splay of the legs. The legs were a little too close together for my taste so I spread them out a little bit more.
And, finally, the big one:
This really is a big one, measuring at about 24″ long. That’s two feet of fiercely protective, alien animal goodness. This one in particular is named Blade, and she is one of the character arkins that appears in the Star Hunters series. I just finished her yesterday, so she came in right under the wire! I had to do a lot of experimenting with this pattern, but I finally got it to where I want it to be. I think it’s just the right mix of cute, cuddly, and the always-important “I will **** you up if you touch my person” vibe that arkins have. I still need to make Orion, who is a gray arkin with some color variation on his face and a scar on his back leg, but it’s a relief to have Blade done. I tend to play favorites with her… She takes no crap. Orion is a bit more playful, on the other hand, but still fierce and protective when he needs to be. He’ll be completed sometime during the campaign, and I’ll post photos of him, Blade, and the beanie plush together. I do love my little apex predators ❤
So those are the major rewards that I’ll be offering during the campaign. The highest tier will also get a piece of original artwork from me, subject matter of the backer’s choosing (though with some restrictions regarding violent and/or sexual content… Fight scenes, frisky romance, minor injuries, things like that are A-OK. Dismemberment, sexual violence, hardcore gore, and other things like that, not so much.) I have some stretch goals planned, and an Early Funding reward if we hit the goal before the halfway point of the campaign, but this is it to start.
Remember, the Kickstarter goes up on Wednesday, Sept. 16! Be sure to follow me on Twitter or subscribe to this blog so you catch the official announcement and get the link to the Kickstarter!!
Thanks for checking out what I’m offering! And thank you for any and all support!!