Today is the first in what should become a series of posts about projects I come across that I personally find interesting that are really close to their funding goals but currently trending not to fund. To show a little love (because we all know that it sucks to be SO CLOSE yet so far from your goal), I’ll be highlighting this and other Kicktstarter projects down the road that could use a little attention to hopefully help them get over the mark.
As a kid, one of my favorite guilty pleasures was buying “Choose your Own Adventure” books from the local library’s overflow rack. I spent countless hours at the local library, but owning the book was always a must so I had as much time as I needed to go through it over and over to see how the story could be different. I can remember my first time reading Trumpet of Terror and being so confused about the page jumping, but once it clicked, I was hooked. All the “choose your own adventure” books were always so easy to spot with their tan gradient spines among the slew of drab old Reader’s Digest hard-bound books, and you knew for sure when you spun it around and recognized the stylistic cartoon illustrations on the cover. I’d do my best to save up quarters and keep my eyes peeled every time I walked by the for-sale shelf, waiting for another one to pop up.
So, when I came across Dime I was, of course, intrigued by the words “choose your own destiny” – and almost more-so that Alverne Ball, the creator of Dime, chose a graphic novel format for his “choose your own destiny” book. So, I contacted Alverne and asked him about his project.
I’m the writer and creator of Dime: a choose your own destiny graphic novel. Dime follows the life of private investigator, Eddie Puss, as he’s hired by a wealthy philanthropist to find the murderer of her deceased husband or you can choose to find Pimp, Jimmy Mac’s missing prostitute.
Kicktraq: What about you? Tell us a little about yourself and what inspired Dime.
I’ve been writing comics for a while now. I’ve written a few small press titles and a couple of graphic novels for such companies as Campfire books. I guess you can say I’ve made my bones on the small press circuit. Dime was inspired actually by a conversation I had with a friend maybe 10 years ago in which he mentioned that he always liked Choose your own adventure books. I, too, loved them but I didn’t have any idea of what to write about till about my sophomore year in college I was taking a literary playwriting class and stumbled across Sophocles and then everything kinda clicked and I knew instantly what story I wanted to tell. Plus, I thought it would be really cool to tell a different kind of crime story than what was being done in the medium of comics.
The story actually lent itself more towards a graphic novel than anything else. I started writing the story as a serial but before I knew it, it was growing and there was no way to stop it. At the same time I wanted to give readers a sense of the world that Dime encompasses and I wanted readers to get lost in that world. So a graphic novel seemed the most logical because readers will have the chance to read and explore Dime 8 different times and I hope that each reading creates a new experience.
Kicktraq: It seems like all the reward levels are eBooks and no printed or hardcover flavors. What made you decide to stick with an eBook vs printed copy options?
Well there are printed options buried deep in the higher amount of rewards, but the biggest reason I chose to make it an ebook was because I always envisioned Dime being an interconnected comic. So at the time I thought it would be a web comic, but as the technology has now caught up to the idea I knew instantly that it would be an ebook because it creates a versatility/mysticism that a printed book can’t create. For instance, when reading the ebook readers will be able to touch their choices and be taken instantly to the next segment of the story. This ensures that the reader doesn’t spoil the story for themselves by seeing the artwork before hand that might appear while flipping to the next page(s) in the book. With that said, I won’t rule out doing a printed book later down the line as I believe the printed page still has it’s place, but doing it as an ebook makes it economical so that everyone can read and experience Dime without feeling like they’ve broken the bank to do so.
Kicktraq: I noticed this is the 2nd time you’ve had Dime on Kickstarter, with this time being considerably more successful than the last already. What made you decide to bring it back to Kickstarter and what do you feel you’ve done this time that’s yielded more successful results than the last?
Truthfully, my first time out I was going about it all wrong. I was looking to make Dime into an interactive live action web series, (which I’m still looking forward to doing in the near future) but at the time I wasn’t utilizing facebook, twitter, linkedin, and any other place that I could use to get the word out. I was just like I’ll post and people will find it I hope.
This time I approached the process a lot differently, more so, because I had grown to understand kickstarter a bit more than when we first met. I decided to bring the original idea back to kickstarter because I had a ton of material that was sitting on a hard drive and no one was reading it. At the same time I was sharing this material with some friends and every time someone started reading it they’d ask, “so when will this be available?” That question alone made me realize I needed to finish Dime so that everyone could enjoy it. I’d say that my presence on twitter and not being afraid to reach out to other comic creators, authors, or celebrity personalities has made all the difference in my success thus far.
I’d like to help a few more smaller GN and comics that might be unknown to the general populace. I’d look to support projects that don’t have “names” already associated with it. I’d also look to help fund possibly a film (since I love film) or a video game underdog.
Kicktraq: Thank you again for your time. Anything else you’d like to share with people?
Readers can check out my website www.alverneball.com to get a sense of how much writing and creating I’ve done in the entertainment industry. My new 8-part mini series, Virgin Wolf, will be published by Silver Phoenix Entertainment this August and will be distributed nationally.
As I’m writing this, Dime currently has 92 backers, $1,675 of $3,000 (55% of their goal) and is trending to hit about 85% of their goal. Currently, the minimum backing level to receive the 144-page eBook is only $10 and some higher levels for posters and prints, but can you really go wrong at only $10? Oh, and as always, I’d never recommend anything I wouldn’t be willing to back myself.