“Aim For The Heart” 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. A. L. Heard, Alessa Riel, P. J. Claremore, Pallas Perilous, and Lacey Hays have also contributed meaningfully to the conceptualization, development, and planning of this anthology. Nina Waters is the lead editor for this anthology. 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?

This anthology is the newest collaborative project from Duck Prints Press, the second installment in our Queer Fanworks Inspired By… collection. This time, we will be queerifying The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, and the working title for the anthology is Aim For The Heart.

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

Authors: All authors for this collection are be fan-authors who are already involved with Duck Prints Press – those who’ve responded to our past calls for applicants and have contributed to our previous projects and/or accepted our invitations to join our Discord. For this project, we favored authors who are part of the Press but have not previously written for one of our anthologies. We currently have 22 authors creating works for this collection.

Artists: Participation in this collection were open to all artists involved with Duck Prints Press (even if they contributed to a past anthology) and we also encourage interested fan-artists who had not previously worked with us to apply. For more information on how recruitment worked, visit the Story and Art Guidelines page. We currently have 15 artists creating works for this collection.

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What is the timeline for this project?

You can see the schedule here.

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Will authors and artists be paid?

Yes. Artists will be paid $50 USD per page of artwork they complete for the book (which will likely be one work per artist, but we may have limited availability for multi-page and/or comic works, depending on how many applications we receive). Authors will be paid $50 USD per story for works between 2,500 and 5,000 words. The rights we ask for in exchange for these payments are outlined in our contracts. You can see a sample of the author contract here and the sample artist 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 $50 USD increments as each goal is reached, to a maximum of $400 USD per contributor.

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Will story/art rights revert to the authors and artists post-publication?

Absolutely. You can read more about the rights we request and the reversion schedule in the Story and Art Guidelines, and we also encourage you to review the sample Author Contract and Artist Contract that we’ve provided publicly.

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Will contributors receive a copy of the anthology?

Yes, contributors will receive a free ebook of the anthology (in ePub and PDF formats).

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How will the anthology be sold?

Copies of the trade paperback magazine-sized zine-style book and related merchandise will initially be available during a crowdfunding campaign; subsequent to campaign fulfillment, the book will also be available on our website in ebook and print forms. Our Kickstarter campaign ended on July 15th, 2023. We anticipate the book becoming available in the Duck Prints Press webstore in early 2024.

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Where will net profits from anthology sales go?

If there are any net profits from the anthology, they will be 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 will the anthology be available in?

These anthologies will be available as an A4 (210 mm x 297 mm/8. 27″ x 11.69″) zine-style paperback, and in ePub and PDF formats.

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What extras and merchandise will there be?

  • Aim For The Heart e-book (reflowable ePub, non-reflowable ePub, and PDF)
  • Aim For The Heart printed trade paperback zine (A4 size, which is 8.25 in x 11.75 in/21 cm x 30 cm) (Printed by Book Logix)
  • Aim For The Heart bookmark: A high-gloss, tasseled, two-sided 2 in x 9 in (5 cm x 23 cm) bookmark, with art by Jagoda Zirebiec on the front and the signatures of the contributing authors and artists on the back. (Printed by UPrinting)
  • Musketeer Dux die-cut sticker: A 3 in x 3 in (7.5 cm x 7.5 cm) die-cut sticker featuring our campaign mascot Dux, created by Alessa Riel. (Printed by Vograce)
  • Coat of Arms key chain: A 3 in x 3 in (7.5 cm x 7.5 cm) enamel metalwork key chain featuring artwork by Aceriee. (Cast by Alchemy)
  • Cover art magnet: A 3 in x 2 in (7.5 cm x 5 cm) museum-quality metal-wrapped magnet featuring the front cover art by Pallas Perilous. (Printed by Custom-Magnets.com)

You can see our current budget here.

What purchase options will I have?

The crowdfunding campaign for Aim For The Heart had three backer levels on Kickstarter. All prices are in USD and do NOT include shipping.

  • Level 1: Aim For The Heart e-book ($15)
  • Level 2: Aim For The Heart printed trade paperback zine ($35)
  • Level 3: Aim For The Heart printed trade paperback zine, Aim For The Heart bookmark, musketeer Dux die-cut sticker, coat of arms key chain, and cover art magnet (early bird – $55; rest of the campaign – $65)

What is the campaign’s funding goal? Are there any stretch goals?

Our campaign goal was to raise $8,000. You can see the breakdown of the entire budget here; the $8,000 includes payments to authors, artists, editors, and graphic designers; printing costs; merchandise production; shipping to backers; processing fees; and everything else. We actually raised just over $10,000, so we did not meet any of our stretch goals.

We had several stretch goals, primarily aimed at enabling us to pay our authors and artists more. Our goals are:

  • $12,000: our creators get a raise (double the base pay!), and all backers get the front cover as a high-quality downloadable file suitable for printing as a postcard, sticker, art print, or poster! 
  • $15,000: our creators get a raise (three times the base pay!)
  • $19,000: our creators get a raise (four times the base pay!), and all backers who’d receive physical merchandise (Level 3) get an art print (8 in x 10 in) of the front cover!
  • $22,000: our creators get a raise (five times the base pay!)
  • $26,000: our creators get a raise (six times the base pay!), and all backers at Level 2 and Level 3 will get a bonus sticker!
  • $29,000: our creators get a raise (seven times the base pay!)
  • $33,000: OUR TRUE GOAL! Our creators will get the maximum pay ($400 per story, $400 per page of artwork excluding the comic, which was negotiated separately). Please help us pay all our amazing authors and artists every penny they’re worth! Also, we’ll make a campaign enamel pin for backers at Level 2 and Level 3, using one of the unused, gorgeous ideas that Aceriee pitched for the enamel key chain!

Are there any add-ons being offered for this campaign? What are they?

  • Premium Backer List: Your name, or a name of your choice, listed on our Premium Backer List. Price: $5.
  • Print-Book Personalization: Have your book signed and personalized by anthology lead editor Nina Waters/unforth; personalization can include a name, an inscription, and/or a doodle—your choice! Only available on print books. Price: $10.
  • Additional print copies of Aim For The Heart can be added to your order for $35 per copy plus shipping.
  • Pick-and-choose Aim For The Heart campaign merchandise: if you want one and only one of each item of campaign merch we’ve made, you should back at Level 3; that’s your cheapest option. But, if you only want some of the merch, or if you want multiples of any of the items, you can add the bookmark ($8), sticker ($4), key chain ($18), and/or magnet ($10) to your order!
  • Other Anthologies: can’t get enough queer short stories? NEITHER CAN WE! Duck Prints Press has published 4 anthologies to date, and you can add e-books of any or all of them to your order! Get your own copies of Add Magic to Taste ($6), And Seek (Not) to Alter Me: Queer Fanworks Inspired by William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing ($10), He Bears the Cape of Stars ($6), and She Wears the Midnight Crown ($6)!
  • Duck Prints Press Merchandise: a lot of our general Press merchandise is available as add-ons, including our Desire Dux sticker ($3), Dux Key Chain ($4), Four Die-cut Stickers Set ($10) featuring our Bowtie Dux, Heart-Eyes Dux, Circle of Dux Prints, and Logo, and Duck Prints Press Logo Tote Bag ($20).
  • And Seek (Not) to Alter Me Leftovers: And Seek (Not) to Alter Me is the first anthology in our Queer Fanworks Inspired by… series, featuring stories and art inspired by Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. We’re offering (lightly damaged) Print Books ($30) and a Merchandise Bundle ($25) that includes the campaign bookmark with art by Alicia Matheson, art prints of the front and back cover with art by Gio Guiramaes, and the campaign Bard Dux sticker.
  • He Bears the Cape of Stars Leftovers: our most recent crowdfunding campaign featured two paired anthologies about characters forging relationships at masquerades (some literal, some figurative, some metaphorical). He Bears the Cape of Stars features 17 mlm stories. We’re offering (lightly damaged) Print Books ($15) and a Merchandise Bundle ($30) including the campaign bookmark with art by Pippin Peacock, an art print of the front cover with art by Friendly Pigeon, an enamel pin with art by Aceriee, and the caped die-cut Dux sticker.
  • She Wears the Midnight Crown Leftovers: the other anthology from our recent campaign, She Wears the Midnight Crown features 17 wlw stories set at varied masquerades both real and perceived. We’re offering (lightly damaged) Print Books ($15) and a Merchandise Bundle ($30) including the campaign bookmark with art by Pippin Peacock, an art print of the front cover with art by Friendly Pigeon, an enamel pin with art by Aceriee, and the crowned die-cut Dux sticker.
  • Seconds Grab Bags: we are VERY picky about what merchandise we consider high-enough quality to send to our buyers, and as a result we’ve ended up with a fair amount of extra merchandise that has slight damage, such as dinged corners, tiny misprints, weird epoxy coating, or indent lines over images. Each grab bag of lightly damaged merchandise includes 1 Enamel Pin, 2 Die-cut Stickers, and 1 Other Item such as a key chain, magnet, or bookmark! Price: $15
  • ONLY 2 AVAILABLE: hand-made rainbow wing Dux plushie, soft and super huggable (but not meant as a child’s toy!), made by EmpowerFantasy Plush based on a pattern by cholyknight. The Dux plush is approximately 7 in (17.75 cm) tall and its adorable plush bottom is 5 in x 5 in (12.75 cm x 12.75 cm). Price: $35.
  • ONLY 1 AVAILABLE: love Dux? SO DO WE! Now, you can get your very own Dux design created by Alessa Riel! Price: $125.
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