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tarot

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Almost there

I knew we'd been neglecting this blog, but hadn't realized we hadn't posted since APRIL! My bad.

We are just ending a very productive weekend of Illogical work, so this seems a very appropriate time to fill you in on where we are. Are we "almost there"? Yes, yes we are.

Back in April, we assigned the tarot card descriptions to our artists. Back then, there were 19 different artists we were working with, not including their colorists. That, by the way, is quite a lot of creators to work with at once. Especially since it was all done remotely and not everyone is entirely computer savvy or had the availability they led us to believe they had.  The quick and dirty summary is-- we ended up with 18 artists on the project, having lost Christopher Jones and Ben Templesmith along the way to other commitments, but we picked up KC Johnson, who is the Re-take Director for The Simpsons.

We received many drafts of the pieces over the next two months. There was a Rough Draft deadline in Mid-May, and a Final Draft Deadline for June 11th.  These stopping points helped us (Mark Masterson, mainly) point out corrections that needed to be made, and made sure the card art was on target, to be consistent with what Mark was picturing it should all look like.

Three colorists joined our journey, and they were nothing short of brilliant-- Diego Rodriguez, Lizzie John and Moose Baumann.

Dozens of emails back and forth between me and the artists, with drafts and questions and corrections, and we finally received the final versions of all of the works of art, in the middle of last week.

In the meantime, Mark was busy writing the accompanying Booklet. Mind you, we weren't even sure this deck would have a booklet just a few months ago. Even with a family trip to Tahiti, he wrote and wrote and wrote.

Think it's easy to write a poetic, humorous, thoughtful, spiritual booklet about 78 works of tarot art, most of which you haven't seen yet, and sometimes have last minute artistic changes that affect the card description? Well, having spent the weekend Proofing and editing every single card, with Mark, I can tell you that this work is genius and clearly it was extremely challenging to create. But it now matches the Tarot Card artwork  just as it should. I think you all will be highly entertained and bowed over by the beauty of it all.

Now, we send it all to the printer. If everything goes without a hitch, we will have the decks in our hands by mid-August, if not before.

You can pre-order copies of the deck here.

We'll have images of all of the artwork up in a few weeks (if not sooner), so you can buy prints, and the carved wood box for your tarot deck. And more cool stuff, too!

It's taken hundreds of hours to put this project together over the last 8 months. We look at each other and are struck by the magnitude of this project and realize how illogical we are in our company decision making and creative process.  Just editing and final touches took about 30 hours over the last 3 days.

But we did it. From Idea, to Kickstarter to Creation, this got made.

And now, here is an early sketch of one of my favorite pieces:

Uncle Henry in Kansas, Art by Emonic.

Uncle Henry in Kansas, Art by Emonic.

I know you all will really enjoy this deck. We look forward to premiering it at the Winkie Con in San Diego, in August, at the the BATS Tarot Convention in San Jose, later in August. If you're intending on attending either event, one or both of us will be speaking at these events, and we'll be selling this deck, the prints and our comic Dorothy, as well.

We'll be posting details about the Release Parties happening in Santa Clara, California and the Los Angeles Area, soon.

Ok, who has a question? You in the back? What's your question?




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Luckiest Fan

Who is? *I* am. Why?  'Cause one of my favorite writers is this fellow named Mark Anthony Masterson. And I get to read through all 78 of his Card Descriptions for our artists, as I send them each their assignments (the list of which we should post for you, soon) and it's So Much Deliciousness! 35,000 words. It's a novel. Baum would be impressed.

Wanna peak? Maybe we should let one lucky fan see some of these here bits.

Oh, and our EmCity podcast was ready, but then I remembered to add a sign off. So that had to be re-edited. Should be available for your earholes in a day or two, now.

Ok, back to sending the artists their assignments.

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Amazonian Wait

The last week has been a chance for me to get caught up on a month's worth of neglected paperwork for my main company. It's also offered some de-stress time from the freaking out that a Kickstarter brings into one's life. I tried to train myself out of thinking that any flicker of light on my phone is the notification of another Backer or new Message.

Mark is hard at work writing up the cards for the Artists and I'm hard at... waiting? Waiting and watching the Backer's sums go through Amazon. I'm all ready to write checks to our Artists, so they can start working. Aaaaaaaany day now... just waiting. Although, for realsies, it'll be another week, according to Amazon, before they're available.

I do have this one new piece from Kori Thompson :

Two of Swords

Two of Swords

So I've been obsessing over the completely awesome time we're going to have at Emerald City. Are you planning on going? If so, what are you most looking forward to?

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102%

Yesterday was one of the weirdest days of our lives. And that's saying a lot, for both Mark and I.

I went to sleep at about 3:30am Sunday night/Monday morning and woke up at 9:30am to find about 15 new backers had jumped on board. That "Ending Soon" section of Kickstarter must get a heckuva lot of traffic.

But we were still short several hundred dollars. The last hour was crazy. Mark was home watching on his computer, and I, 450 miles away was sitting on the couch with my 4-year old, Cat in the Hat on PBS, crazy neighbor-lady's voice of yelling at her dog floating through my window.

Refresh the screeen, refresh the screen. Mark and I were IMing our panic to each other. All of the internet seemed to be running slow, particularly in the last 20 minutes. AND THEN, we made it! One friend hugely increased his Backer amount and we hit goal. BUT, a few people reduced their pledges immediately after that. And we were suddenly a bit afraid they might reduce below the $28,000 mark.

The dog needed to be taken out to pee (which she would not do), and my son demanded a new bandaid for his scratched knee. These creatures are very fortunate I love them to bits.

Running back to my computer, I wondered, "Do we get credit for hitting goal if people reduce their levels last minute?" However, we did not need to worry. Another friend also hugely increased HIS backer amount. And then a few other people jumped on board. By 10:55a, we were at about 101% of goal and by 11am, when it officially ended, we were at 102% of our goal.

I felt the Shower of Relief that one usually only hears about. Mark and I were both crying. Happiness. Relief. Fear. Success. Astonishment. Shock.

This was the first project we made together with no one else to mess it up (see: Former Company's History), and no one else had started this idea. We came up with this concept in the midst of a conversation. It was OUR dumb idea!!! And it was made real. Thanks to all of you.

We're still processing this reality.

And I got us right to work.

We made a new Pre-Order item in our Illogical Shop for those of you who want a deck, but didn't get to be a part of the Kickstarter.

And a Backer asked for the opportunity to buy one of our posters, so I added that to our Shop, too.

Now I'm stumbling through the weird Kickstarter Survey program (it's kind of clunky and very inefficient). I gave Mark a minor scare with the reality of his upcoming deadlines for getting all of the artists their card descriptions.  He's also programming the Dorothy #1 download in our Shop.

Oh, and Kori Thompson sent us two new pieces of art for his Tarot Cards. (We'll share those soon).

Anyone have questions about the process?

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The last few hours...

In all of these posts, we haven't really talked about the experience of running our Kickstarter. I will tell you that the last few days get increasingly more stressful. There is a lot of Staring At Your Computer Screen (and phone screen) WILLING it to show more money has been backed to your project.

When someone decreases their level or has to back out, you feel as though you've been stood up for the Prom Date you've been primping for over the last month.

But when someone increases their Backer Level? You want to find them, jump on them and cover their face in kisses, like a happy Golden Retriever welcoming you home from a long day away.

15 hours left...

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T-Minus 40 Hours

From our latest Kickstarter Update:

This is it.

As we write this, there are 40 hours left in the Kickstarter. 40 hours until the curtain comes down and they make us get off the stage and back to work deck-building. We've done a lot of drum banging, cheerleading, and jazz handing. At this point, in these final hours, you, our lovely Backers, are the best hope for this project. You can help us get Funded by Sharing, Facebooking, Tweeting and Emailing everyone and anyone.

Especially to that one friend. You know who we mean. You've been wanting to tell them about the Shadow of Oz for weeks, but you kept forgetting. Now's the time. They're ready to hear about it.

There's over 330 of you and you have amazing Group Power. Here's a shortlink to share, if you're into the whole brevity thing: http://kck.st/1iZpoyQ

This just in: You can now add this lovely Velvet Bag to hold your deck and booklet, for only $10.

This Tarot Bag measures 6" wide and 9" tall and will perfectly hold The Shadow of Oz: A Tarot Deck

This Tarot Bag measures 6" wide and 9" tall and will perfectly hold The Shadow of Oz: A Tarot Deck

Wondering how else to help? You could consider increasing your Level or including an Add-On, like the lovely bag, above. You can pledge for more than one thing by raising your pledge amount to the sum of the rewards you would like via the "Manage My Pledge" button. Then tally up the total for what you want and change your Backer Amount to that Total. In a few days, when the Kickstarter is complete, we'll send out a Survey where you can let us know what you want, or you can message us now, in case you're worried you'll forget.

Here's some of our other Add-ons:

  • $5 for an .mp3 of the "Dorothy" song that was written as a fan piece to our comic Dorothy, by Hugo Award winner Seanan McGuire
  • For $10, you can hear how imbibed Mark and Anna can get while commentarying the Wizard of Oz movie.
  • Most importantly, for $15, you can add on a Limited Edition 8x10" Color Print of one of our cards. (When the cards are all created, we'll send you a link to choose your piece from, unless you have the level where you receive the .pdf of all 78 cards).

This is the day. This is the hour. The fate of this project is in your hands, you beauties.

Early Concept notes from Mark

Early Concept notes from Mark

Thank you so much for being part of this journey.

~Anna & Mark

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How Big Is Your Deck?

Happy Pi Day!

In case you haven’t heard, Anna Warren Cebrian and Mark Anthony Masterson publish comic books from time to time, most famously a modern Wizard of Oz adaptation titled “Dorothy.”

Thing is, along the way to our next comic, we made an observation. And that observation turned into an idea. And that idea became a project. And that project is seeking funding from the crowd on Kickstarter.

It’s like the Kingdom that was lost for want of a nail, except in reverse and it’s totally an Oz-themed Tarot Deck

Check it out: we got 19 of our graphic novel colleagues to agree to illustrate a full color 78-card tarot deck with scenes and characters from all the Oz books. We take our love of art and storytelling, wed it with the symbolism and wisdom of the tarot, and Boom: the Ultimate Choose-Your-Own-Adventure.

Like I said, we’ve chosen to crowd-fund this project, and we’re nearly there. In the final days of the fund-raising, though, we wanted to be sure to reach out to everyone and get you hep to the chance to help out. There’s even a gorgeous deck of cards in it for you if pledge at a certain level.

Speaking of the levels, there’s one or two that might interest people living in the L.A. area. We’re having a Deck Party over a comic book store, and also a Day with the Creators at Disneyland. Just look for the “GLINDA’S PARTY” and “RETURN TO OZ” levels. Those also come with decks and some other cool stuff.

There's levels for people in the Bay Area, too. Dinner with us, a party at Illusive Comics & Games with a lot of the artists. Those also come with decks and cool stuff. Look up "DAINTY CHINA COUNTRY" AND "OZMA'S BIRTHDAY PARTY" levels.

Oh and hey, there’s also add-ons. Tack an extra $3- $15 onto your pledge to get things like stickers or our commentary on the Wizard of Oz film, while we're well as imbibing.

I do hope you’ll give our project a look, or at least pass it along to anyone you think might be interested: comic book fans, Oz groupies, card collectors, passing wizards, sentient frogs, whomever. We don’t judge who your friends are, and we think the deck has a lot of appeal.

It’s called “The Shadow of Oz.” 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/illogicalassociates/the-shadow-of-oz-a-tarot-deck



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