First Kickstarter pledge awards coming!

Posted by on May 2, 2014 in Progress Report

Pledgers' Edition of "Written in the Stars."

Pledgers’ Edition of “Written in the Stars.”

It’s great to be able to finally announce something, so with no further ado, and after 17 months of work, here comes the first of my original kickstarter pledge awards!

For those of you who supported me at the £8 level or higher, which is 248 of you, on Friday the 9th of May you’ll be getting an email from me which will give you details on how to access to my short story “Written in the Stars”.

This will be available in multiple formats. PDF (For those of you on PC/Mac) Epub (for Nook and Generic Ebook Readers, works great for the Android Aldiko Reader), Mobi (For Amazon Kindle Devices) and LRF (for Sony devices). I’ve been through some extensive testing to make sure the book works in these formats – they all have their little foibles. That’s the good thing about standards… so many to choose from! 😉 Next week I’ll be doing as much device testing as I can. (At the moment the Sony version doesn’t seem to like copyright symbols and apostrophes.)

I’m not sure what is best for those of you on Apple devices, though I understand they can read Epub formats – can you import an ebook without using iTunes? Otherwise I may need to upload the story to iTunes/iBookstore. Perhaps if any Apple owners can advise – I’d be grateful as I don’t have a device to test this on!

If anyone has another device type or file format not listed, please let me know and I’ll see what I can do.

No DRM here.

The book is licensed to you as an individual and I’d like to humbly request that you don’t forward it on. There is no DRM here, but merely a request for respect of copyright and hard work. I talk about additional copies below.

The story is science fiction, and approximately 1,800 words in length. It’ll give you a taste of the style you’ll get with the full length Elite: Reclamation when it arrives. It’s not set in the Elite universe, my Frontier Developments license doesn’t allow it. For the idea I had, which came from a dream believe it or not, the Elite universe isn’t essential anyway.

This one is written in the first person, whereas Elite: Reclamation has been written in third person. It’s a narrative story, whereas Elite: Reclamation is obviously something of an epic.

As for the plot… you know by now. No spoilers. 😉

And what next?

For those at the £35 pledge level, the ‘Elite: Reclamation Official Guidebook’ will be next. Text for that is almost complete. I’m just awaiting the official cover art work from Fantastic Books and an ok from Frontier Developments before I can finish that task. This is currently an 88 page landscape A4 guide to Elite: Reclamation, with lots of unseen imagery and background detail that won’t be available elsewhere.

I’m really looking forward to seeing the reaction to some of this work, as it’s been languishing on my hard-drive for such a long time! It’s going to be great to get it out into the wild.

Thanks to you fine folks!

I do have a question though. I’ve already been asked many times whether these books (the short story and the guide) will be available to buy for those who missed the original kickstarter. There have also been requests from pledgers as to whether they can buy additional copies for friends and family. This will require the books to be available on ebook websites for purchase.

I’m conscious that these were Kickstarter pledge awards and that commands a level of exclusivity – hence they’ll be given to pledgers first and those copies will be marked as “Kickstarter Pledgers’ Edition” which will be exclusive to pledgers only.

In the case of the guide, I also need to check with Frontier as to whether this is allowed. Michael’s looking at that for me.

My question is whether pledgers would object to me making these books available to buy for others (effectively a non-exclusive second edition) after a period of time?

From my perspective it would be very much appreciated if I could as I can upload them to Amazon et al, and benefit from (hopefully positive!) reviews and continuing to raise my profile in advance of the retail release of Elite: Reclamation.

Kickstarter pledgers will be receiving a special edition of the books that specifically indicates that they backed Elite: Reclamation, with a unique cover and internal notes to this effect. The general release will have a different cover and lack the notes.

I’m planning to do this after an appropriate delay, to ensure that pledgers get the well deserved benefit of being the first to read and enjoy them. If any pledgers have an objection to this, please let me know.

Regardless, it’s going to be great to see the reaction to my work after all this time. This is the beginning of the end of my Kickstarter saga!

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  1. iBooks on the iPad can handle PDF easily. Not sure about ePub, but I’ll let you know!

    • Oh, and if you have a web-link to the file then you can ‘Open in iBooks’ without having to go through iTunes.

    • If you could that would be great. Otherwise PDF looks like the default answer!

  2. Yay Great work Drew. Looking forward to it.

  3. iPad and iPhone iBooks apps both read ePub.
    It is the native file format for the app!

  4. Hi Drew,

    I’ll have to reverse your question about rerelease; I’m currently only pledged for 5 pounds. Are there ways to add 3 or 30 bucks to get to the levels where I can get your extra story and/or guidebook? Or are you currently closed for business? 🙂

    • Can’t take any more backers/pledges until after the book comes out to backers/plegders. Managing the list is too complex already, however there is a plan to allow purchase of the items after the event… and that won’t be long!

  5. Fantastic news and well done on your progress. I have really enjoyed reading your regular updates and watching the process unfurl.

    As an original pledger I have no objection at all to you opening the ‘exclusives’ up. The more the merrier and it will all help build the buzz towards the game launch.

    Having read your other books I know you will have worked hard on even these short stories and the quality will be some of the best PR Elite could get so I am sorry Michael will find away to OK it if he can.

  6. I would think that there’s a good number of backers who couldn’t stump up for the higher pledge tiers during the campaign and would appreciate the opportunity to get in on the action at some point down the line.

    I backed all the books, on the various platforms, so had to limit my jonties, hence I’m only at th £5 mark with Elite:Reclamation.

    I’m sure you could add an acknowledgment to any sales sites, giving a tip of the hat that the work was made possible by ‘premium level Kickstarter pledgers’ (are they listed on the website?) or some such. Naturally I agree it should be after a suitable period of time and with a relevant cover/intro text.

    Looking forward to the coming months Elite:goodness.


  7. For me it was rewarding enough to be part of making something amazing happen – meaning the rebirth of the Elite Universe in all aspects. I’ll be able to say, “I was there. I helped this happen.”

    I’m not going to lose any sleep at all if you get a few more sales after the event. It all goes to keep the ball rolling along 🙂

  8. Hello Drew,

    it’s great to see finally everything coming together, eagerly awaited, the tension sustained by the regular updates… 😀

    I really enjoyed your “work-in-progress” reports and found it very interesting to get a glance on the things to be done and considered
    when developing such a story and book. So for now, I’ve just pledged for the short story and ebook, but if there would be another option to get the “guide”, I will reconsider to buy it also… 😉

    Regarding your question related to the epub support on the “i”-devices:
    I’ve got the impression that all those talks about Apple’s “walled garden” generally lead to some wrong notion about how that actually complicates the matter to get some arbitrary file onto such a device. In fact, it’s mostly a disappointment for the “techie” in us that it doesn’t show up as a “storage device” and allowing access to “The Filesystem” when connecting it to a desktop computer.

    Instead an App can announce it’s capability to support certain file types and after that, it’s just a matter of “drag’n’drop” onto iTunes and letting iTunes copy it into the appropriate sandbox. At least that was the case when I had an iPad for testing during the development of some Mobile Apps:
    I could import some 3rd party, non-DRM epubs for example into Stanza. I’m not up-to-date with the current situation after iTunes lost it’s capability for “local sync” (i.e. does that loss mean “any local sync” or just “no PIM-data sync”?), because I belong to the rare species of Mac-users which can’t be convinced so far that an “i”-device is the “right thing for me”.
    But I would expect that it’s similarly possible via a users iCloud-account… Therefore I think distribution via iBooks would be convenient, not a necessity.

    And without iTunes? Do you think about users who use their device standalone, without access to a desktop computer? How many of your readers will have an iPad but no computer to run E:D? 😉
    But considering the hints of Dave Vint it looks for me, that even regular downloads from the net can be delegated to the appropriate Apps.

    Finally, Apple’s ebook format is actually epub (V2, afaik). iBooks (the App) supports Apple’s own DRM or no DRM, it just can’t handle Adobe’s DRM.
    (For those who wonder: the epub standard considers DRM mechanisms as some kind of plugin, so it’s perfectly “legal” to make things worse by inventing a DRM scheme and still stamping “epub” on the file…)

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