Ryan "Dinosaur Comics" North writes in with the improbable tale of his amazingly successful Kickstarter for a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure style adaptation of Hamlet, which has made him a fortune and prompted him to release the whole thing under a Creative Commons license:
There's a little under two days left on the project for my chooseable-path version of Hamlet called To Be Or Not To Be. (Like a choose-your-own-adventure book, but that is trademarked, so I will say that in this book Adventures Are Being Chosen By You and leave it at that) You can play as Ophelia, Hamlet, or Hamlet's Dad, but if you choose him you die on the first page and play as a ghost. And instead of a play-within-a-play there's a book-within-a-book where you read ANOTHER choose-your-own-path book. I'm really excited for it.
All the endings will be illustrated by some really talented artists like Noelle Stevenson (Gingerhaze), Kate Beaton (Hark A Vagrant), and Meredith Gran (Octopus Pie) and the book will be released with a CC BY-NC 3.0 license. I was asking for $20k and we reached that in 3 and a half hours, and now in the last day of the project it's above $400k, making it the most-funded publishing project on Kickstarter ever which is nuts!
The coolest thing about it is the contrast with traditional publishing: nobody would want to print this book in full colour and with all these illustrations, but because Kickstarter lets you contact the audience directly, we've been able to do that and to move the book from black and white to colour, add more illustrations, as well as have a mini prequel adventure too.
To Be Or Not To Be: That Is The Adventure
Studio North was commissioned to refit an old elevator shaft in a converted warehouse loft in Calgary; they built a tall, narrow library with climbable shelves whose hand- and foot-holds retract into the shelving.
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