Aether Beyond the Binary FAQ

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What is Duck Prints Press?

Duck Prints Press LLC is a small, independent press based in New York State, USA. Claire Houck (aka Nina Waters, aka unforth) is the managing member/owner and is the lead editor for this project. Our founding vision is to work collaboratively with fanwork creators who wish to publish their original work. You can learn more about us here.

What is this anthology?

“Aether Beyond the Binary” is the newest collaborative project from Duck Prints Press, an anthology featuring characters outside the gender binary living and adventuring and experiencing while living on aetherpunk Earth during modern and near-future era.

Who will be creating the stories for this anthology? How will contributors be selected?

Up to 20 authors were be selected to write stories between 5,000 and 7,500 words aligned with the project theme. 10 of these authors will be “returners”—authors who have previously completed stories with Duck Prints Press—and 10 will be new to the Press. Returning authors will be selected based on a review of pitches submitted by all interested returners; new authors will be asked to submit a story sample of no more than 1,500 words and a story pitch aligned with the anthology’s themes. Three readers will rate the story sample on a rubric (which you can see here), the results will be standardized and averaged, and the ten top-rated authors will be invited to contribute. You can review the full guidelines here.

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What is the timeline for this project?

You can see the schedule here.

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Were authors paid?

Yes. Authors were offered a baseline pay rate of $75 USD per story for works between 5,000 and 7,500 words. The rights we ask for in exchange for these payments are outlined in our contracts—basically, we request worldwide First English Publication rights for e-books and print for a period of one year. Other “first” rights (such as audio book) are not requested. You can see a sample of the author contract here.

During our crowdfunding campaign, we’ll include stretch goals aimed at raising enough funds to increase the contributor pay. If we reach these stretch goals, contributor payments will increase in $75 USD increments as each goal is reached, to a maximum of $600 USD per contributor.

Thanks to Kickstarter funding, we were able to pay all contributors to this anthology $375 USD.

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Will story rights revert to the authors post-publication?

Absolutely. We encourage you to review the sample Author Contract that we’ve provided publicly; for anthologies we request First English Electronic and Print Publishing rights, with exclusivity for a period of one year post publication.

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Did contributors receive a copy of the anthology?

Yes, contributors received a free e-book of the anthology (in ePub and PDF formats).

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How will the anthology be sold?

Copies of the digest-sized trade paperback book (5.5″ x 8.5″) and related merchandise were initially be available during a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter. This campaign has now been fulfilled, and we will be making Aether Beyond the Binary available on our website as an e-book and print book, and it will also be available as an e-book at major retailers and through libraries and available as a print-on-demand book through some retailers. An “extra merchandise” sale will be held once campaign fulfillment is complete; we have at least a few extras of all the merchandise.

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Where did net profits from anthology sales go?

Net profits from the anthology have been re-invested in Duck Prints Press to help us grow the business and to fund the creation of future projects.

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What formats are the anthology be available in?

The anthology is available as a digest-sized trade paperback book (5.5″ x 8.5″), and in ePub and PDF formats. We offered a premium hardcover edition (also digest size) as part of our Kickstarter campaign.

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What extras and merchandise were there?

  • Aether Beyond the Binary e-book: in ePub and PDF formats.
  • Aether Beyond the Binary trade paperback book: digest-size trade paperback book, 5.5 in x 8.5 in (14 cm x 21.5 cm), approximately 350 pages. The cover art by Mar Spragge is full wrap-around, front, spine and back, and will be printed in lovely matte texture. (Printed by Booklogix.)
  • Aether Beyond the Binary premium hardcover book: digest-size hardcover book, 5.5 in x 8.5 in (14 cm x 21.5 cm). This gorgeous hardcover edition will feature a linen-covered case-bound binding, a glossy wrap-around cover of Mar Spragge’s art, headbands and footbands, and a ribbon bookmark. Depending on order volume, we may also be able to offer foil-stamping on the case, custom end papers, and sprayed edges. (Printed by Booklogix.)
  • Aether Musician Bookmark: this lovely tasseled, glossy bookmark features artwork by Pippin Peacock on the front and the signatures of the contributors to Aether Beyond the Binary on the back. 2 in x 7 in/5 cm x 17.75 cm. (Printed by UPrinting)
  • Aether Dux Die-Cut Sticker: it wouldn’t be a Duck Prints Press anthology without a custom Dux designed by Alessa Riel. Dux is our non-binary Press mascot (you can learn more about Dux here), and for this campaign they’re decked out with a stylish mohawk, crystals, and machinery: they are ready for aether flight. 3 in x 3 in/7.5 cm x 7.5 cm. (Printed by Vograce)
  • Non-Binary Sky Whale Enamel Pin: this stunning pin depicts a celestial whale moving through a starscape, with the non-binary gender sign dangling by a chain from their mouth. The artwork for this pin is by Atomic Pixies. 2 in x 2 in/5 cm x 5 cm. (Manufactured by Alchemy)
  • Holographic Plant-Loving Robot Sticker: this adorable plant-watering bot graces the back cover of the wrap-around cover by Mar Spragge, and they and the plants they’re watering sparkle and shine on this rectangular, shimmery, holographic sticker. 4 in x 4 in/10.25 cm x 10.25 cm. (Printed by Vograce)

We also offered a wide range of add-ons as part of our Kickstarter campaign.

What purchase options did backers have?

The Kickstarter for Aether Beyond the Binary ran from December 26th 2023 to January 25th 2024. We offer five backer levels:

Backer Level 1: Aether Beyond the Binary e-book + inclusion on the e-book backer list (optional). Price: $15

Backer Level 2: Aether Beyond the Binary trade paperback + e-book + inclusion on the e-book backer list (optional). Price: $25 + shipping

Backer Level 3: Aether Beyond the Binary hardcover + e-book + inclusion on the e-book backer list (optional). Price: $40 + shipping

Backer Level 4: Aether Beyond the Binary trade paperback + Aether Musician Bookmark + Aether Dux Die-Cut Sticker + Non-Binary Sky Whale Enamel Pin + Holographic Plant-Loving Robot Sticker + e-book + inclusion on the e-book backer list (optional). Price: $55 + shipping

Backer Level 5: Aether Beyond the Binary hardcover + Aether Musician Bookmark + Aether Dux Die-Cut Sticker + Non-Binary Sky Whale Enamel Pin + Holographic Plant-Loving Robot Sticker + e-book + inclusion on the e-book backer list (optional). Price: $70 + shipping

What is aetherpunk?

We got asked this so many times that we wrote an entire blog post to answer it!

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Have a question not answered here? Drop us an ask on Tumblr, DM us on twitter, or send us an e-mail!