Crowd funding is the in thing for obtaining money to fund a variety of projects, with Kickstarter being the most prominent of these sites. With new projects going live daily, it’s a chore to keep up with, let alone find, interesting genre projects. The Crowd Funding Roundup will be our effort to bring projects we think are interesting to your attention so you can, if you so choose, decide to help out. These posts are a collaborative effort between James Aquilone and JP Frantz.
What’s it about? An anthology of speculative fiction written by authors with association to Kansas City and/or set in the region.
Why it’s interesting: Speculations K.C., edited by Bryan Thomas Schmidt, will compile original and reprint science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories with ties to Kansas City, on the occasion of MidAmeriCon II, the 2016 Kansas City Worldcon. The book will be released at the Con and later made available elsewhere. Speculations K.C. will include Jim Butcher’s first Dresden Files short story, James Gunn’s original Immortals story, and stories that George R.R. Martin and C.J. Cherryh wrote at Kansas City conventions. There will also be a new story from William F. Nolan paying tribute to Ray Bradbury’s Mars tales and new tales from Pat Cadigan, Rob Chilson, William F. Wu, and Robin Wayne Bailey, among others. The ebook is $12, while the trade paperback is $25.
What’s it about? The fourth annual anthology of humorous science fiction & fantasy.
Why it’s interesting: The fourth edition of the Unidentified Funny Objects anthology has a “dark humor” theme and includes reprints from Neil Gaiman and George R.R. Martin. Esther Friesner, Mike Resnick, Piers Anthony, Gini Koch, Jody Lynn Nye, and Tim Pratt contribute original stories. Submissions to the anthology will open in April. The ebook is $10, while the trade paperback (plus the ebook) is $20.
What’s it about? Tales of guardian spirits and divine powers by Seanan McGuire, Ken Liu, Alethea Kontis, Laura Anne Gilman, Scott Edelman and more.
Why it’s interesting: Genius Loci features stories about “sentient deserts, beneficent forests, lonely shrubs, and protective planetary spirits,” all with an “emphasis” on the “locale as much as it is on the spirit inhabiting it.” The 500-plus-page book contains 31 new fantasy and science fiction stories by such authors as Cat Rambo, Mercedes M. Yardley, Alethea Kontis, Damien Angelica Walters, and Anatoly Belilovsky. The book, edited by Jaym Gates for Ragnarok Publications, also includes gorgeous art by Lisa A. Grabenstetter and Evan M. Jensen. The ebook is $15, while the trade paperback is $30.
What’s it about? A new comedy from Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion produced by you!
Why it’s interesting: Firefly co-stars Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk are reuniting for a web series about science fiction conventions called Con Man. Here’s how they describe it: “Wray Nerely (Alan Tudyk-Me!) was a co-star on Spectrum, a sci-fi series which was canceled — Too Soon — yet became a cult classic. Wray’s good friend, Jack Moore (Nathan Fillion), starred in the series and has gone on to become a major movie star. While Jack enjoys the life of an A-lister, Wray tours the sci-fi circuit as a guest of conventions, comic book stores, and lots of pop culture events. The show will feature all the weird and crazy things that happen to Wray along the way to these events.” Rewards include T-shirts, a thank-you in the credits, signed posters, and early access to the entire series on Vimeo On Demand.
What’s it about? A cooperative, family-oriented boardgame about everyone’s favorite super marionette TV show, Thunderbirds!
Why it’s interesting: Not only do you and your friends/family get to play as International Rescue, the game was designed by Matt Leacock, who is responsible for the games Pandemic and Forbidden Island, among others. Who wouldn’t want to play this? No one! For approximately $62 plus shipping you can get the base game and all upgrades.
What’s it about? Cowboys, Magic, Duels! A strategic sci-fi fantasy western where everyone’s turn happens at once, 2-4 players.
Why it’s interesting: As mashups go, SF and Westerns is intriguing. Then add in resolution is done simultaneously with a press-your-luck mechanic and I’m very interested. The art looks pretty good, there’s a mobile app and support for Tabletop Simulator. That’s pretty cool. $29 nets you the base game and an item pack. Oh, and llamas. Any game with llamas is, by definition, good.