FAQ #3: Anonymity!
We've had a few people ask, so we'd like to clarify, the having your name listed with the contributors is totally optional. You will have the chance to choose if and how your name appears!
FAQ #2: Let's look at some art!
Amanda Gannon is half of our team, and in addition to barking at strangers and talking to imaginary people, one of her hobbies is making art. Most of it is pretty cool.
She started on the art for the incentive prints today, and should have it done by the end of the campaign. That's not soon enough to give y'all an idea of what it will look like, though, so we're giving you a look behind the scenes.
She's taking some very pretty but very small ink drawings she did a while back and is enlarging and improving them. These are the originals she's working from:
You can have prints of the final versions (again, not these, but super-incredibly-close), plus ebook, website membership for the duration of the serial, and listing with the contributors.
And someone, one lucky someone, will get the originals, which are 9x12, done in archival ink on vellum Bristol board.
FAQ #1: Let's talk about sex scenes.
Holy wow, we are 30% funded in three days! Please keep spreading that word!
Today, I thought we should share details about the bonus scene perk with prospective backers.
If you are brave and awesome enough to take this perk, you will get a sex scene of at least 3,000 words. It will be published in the book for everyone to enjoy, but unless the backer requests a dedication, their name will not be connected with it. You can choose two or three characters (more than that is a logistical nightmare both in reality and in fiction) and we will sex 'em up. It doesn't have to be a canonical mix, and we do not care one rodential posterior about orientation. Three guys? We can do that. It's all good.
If you want a specific something included, we'll do our best to accommodate that (within reason; "three weasels, some peanut butter, and a ping-pong-ball gun" would obviously be over the line, although we might ask you to visit next time you come to town).
If you want a specific something NOT included, we can do that.
All attempts at gratifying kinks will be met with our best effort, and limits are pretty soft. We're open to negotiation on anything except for kids/pooping/barfing/serious bodily harm.
Backers will have the option - and it is totally optional - to make up a list of up to ten things that they really, really like. It's conceivable that this might embarrass some people terrifically, but we assure you, whatever you are into, we have probably written worse for ourselves.
WHAT IS THIS?
The Golden Mask is an adults-only adventure novel, an action-packed sex-filled swashbuckler that . . . oh, here, just have a summary:
It is a time of airships, decadence, and splendor, a mad king rules over a terrified populace. Justice is in chains, replaced by the mad king's whim, the populace brought to heel by fear.
Born a commoner, Count Varian's heart still lies with the people, and the crimes inflicted on the populace by mad King Marivane enrage him. He has played the part of noble long enough, and now he must play the part of hero. He becomes the Golden Mask, anonymity his only shield against a traitor's death.
Ambrel has returned from long exile, driven by rage to avenge the destruction of her house. As Lady Fox, she harries the corrupt nobility, seeking the heart of the conspiracy that destroyed her family. Her cunning and fearlessness drive the Golden Mask to seek her aid, aid she is not necessarily willing to give.
Opposing them are those who now rule from the shadows: the king's advisor Urza, who has the kingdom wrapped in his shadowy web; and Raziel Morningstar, who enforces Urza's will with fire and sword and cruelty. Both are said to possess unnatural powers, and both are hungry for more.
Those who resist are swiftly silenced. Mass arrests fill the cells of the Tower of Justice, where innocent citizens await execution for false crimes. Others are murdered outright. Some simply . . . vanish.
In a country in desperate need of heroes, who will be brave enough to answer that call?
OH MY GOD, WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE?
Paul Batteiger is an author, and will be taking the authorial reins on this project. Amanda Gannon is an author and artist, and will be editing and constructing the artsy perks. She will also be handling some of the sex and bonus scenes.
We love to write adventure stories with the sex left in. We love it so much, we started up Adventurotica.com, where we will publish The Golden Mask as a serial before releasing it as an ebook and a trade paperback.
The Golden Mask is sort of like Zorro and Catwoman versus Darth Vader and Rasputin, with Caligula as king, wrapped up in Three Musketeers-style swashbuckling and tied together with string cheese. Only way, way sexier than that sounds. It is exactly the kind of full-throttle cheesy adventure that you, in your heart of hearts, crave . . . only we don't fade to black and leave you to write the slash parts yourselves. (Although if you want to, we won't complain.)
Anyway, it's going to be awesome. There will be masked heroes and villains, daring swordfights, railing kills, airships, riots, murder, conspiracy, and loads of crazy, groping, sweaty-palmed, panting, clenching, groin-grinding sex. We have an unlimited special effects budget and absolutely no limits on what our actors will and will not do, and we abuse these advantages shamelessly.
WHAT WE NEED:
Money. (No point in beating around the bush.)
Here is how we will spend it:
- A really cool cover. We'd like to pay someone to do this for us so our cover is not as awesomely bad as the trailer.
- Materials for the incentives. All that fun stuff has to come from somewhere!
- Living expenses. Food, bills, and a roof to turn away the life-leeching rays of the blazing hatestar – sorry, the sun. We have this annoying hierarchy of needs thing going on. Damn you, Maslow!
- Medical care. Writing all these naughty words can be dangerous, you know. Paper cuts, repetitive stress injuries, tragic Hitachi accidents . . . it's a brutal line of work. (Have you ever tried to get lube out of a keyboard?) No, seriously, some of us need to be medicated for the public good.
And there you have it. Most of it is going towards keeping us alive. Is that exciting? No! But we have to stay alive to write smut. Contrary to what you might think, zombies don't write very interesting sex scenes. It's just a lot of moaning and cannibalism.
WHAT YOU GET:
The warm and fuzzy feeling of helping independent artists eke out a living pursuing their dream of providing quality adult entertainment to the teeming, hairy-palmed masses?
Not enough? Oh, fine.
Off to the right is a list of neat stuff we think you might enjoy, such as handmade bookmarks, art prints, and crazy things we are willing to do with words.
Do you read good books? (We hope so. Although evil eldritch tomes are also cool.) Old grocery lists and used envelopes are not worthy placeholders! You need something classy, like a velvet ribbon bookmark with dangly little charms! Default size will fit a regular paperback, but we can make them to any length you want.
Have you ever wanted a gruesome literary death? We have you covered. It's far more convenient than actually experiencing a gruesome death!
Frustrated by how your OTP never got it on? We have a perk for that, allowing you to order up a sexy scene featuring your favorite two (or three) characters. Doesn't even have to be canon, and we are extremely open-minded about content. We don't judge. Unless that's your thing.
Are you feeling the lack of art in your life? Amanda – and you can see more of her work here – will be drawing Nouveau-inspired portraits of Lady Fox and The Golden Mask, which will be turned into prints. Or you can have the originals, if you're quick. We'll even make them an easy-to-frame standard US size.
Want to celebrate your unspeakable crimes? We can fix you up with a personalized Wanted poster. Think of it as advertising for your villainous services. You may never get a better chance to brag.
Need to conceal your identity from your enemies? We'll give you the actual (insert theme music here) GOLDEN MASK. (The mask mask. Not the guy in the mask. Sorry. It's really hard fitting an entire action hero into a flat-rate shipping box without getting gruesome.)
At the very least, you will be getting an awesome swashbuckling erotic adventure story delivered to your inbox. I am not seeing a downside. Unless you share an email address with your mother. How embarrassing.
We post the book serially on our site. This will be our 6th novel, and we've never failed to post three serial updates a week. We are reliable. The story will be finished on time. It is projected to run between 50 and 60 chapters, and should be between 125,000 and 150,000 words.
- Memberships to Adventurotica will be available for use immediately, meaning you can follow along there, three times a week, until the story ends.
- If you've bought yourself any sort of walk-on role or bonus scene, that will obviously come out with the ebook.
- The ebook won't come out until after the book has been published in serial form on Adventurotica.com, which should wrap up in February. You'll be able to read it at Adventurotica the entire time.
- Print books will be released at the same time as the ebook.
- Production of material incentives like prints and bookmarks and so forth will begin after the campaign ends, but this bit is not anticipated to take terribly long.
If we don't make goal, we'll still be able to provide the perks for everyone who did donate, and we'll do the best we can on what we get.
This is the part where we're supposed to explain how our project is valuable to you and to the world. No pressure. I'd love to claim that our project will bring about world peace by making sure nobody has a hand free to pull a trigger, but that seems unlikely.
- What we can do is make people happy. Have a good time. Bring something that is unreservedly fun into the world, just because it belongs here.
- Erotica is an important genre, and we want to make it a better, more entertaining place. Bottom line, people often complain, with good reason, that good erotica is difficult to find. That most of it is poorly-written. That the characters are flat. That the sex is boring. That it doesn't tell an interesting story.
- We want to give readers entertainment for adults, not just adult entertainment. There is a dire shortage of well-written, fast-paced, plot-heavy long-form erotica. We want to write a book that provides you, the reader, with a well-told adventure story that doesn't fade to black just when things are getting good.
- We want to encourage independent erotica publishing by being part of it. By publishing independently, we are freeing ourselves from the restrictions placed on authors by publishers; restrictions on content, on length, on ratio of plot to sex. We aren't breaking rules. We're stepping outside of them. We're doing our own thing, our way. And you can help!
HOW YOU CAN HELP:
Boost the signal! If you can't contribute, that's fine. You can still tell everyone about us.
There are share tools right here on Indiegogo! Also, we are assuming you have some social network stuff going on, so spreading the word that way would be super-awesome of you.
We're sure you have friends who would appreciate some swashbuckling smuttery, so, really, you'll be doing them a service sending them our way.
We sincerely appreciate those who support us by helping to spread the word. Y'all do a lot of good, and we cannot thank you enough.