The webcomics blog about webcomics


Benign Kingdom¹, which Kickstarter was sitting on for a while, has gone live. The principals involved are Yuko Ota, Evan Dahm, Becky Dreistadt, and KC Green (who’s involved in nearly every cool comics Kickstarter anyway). They’ve got four art styles that are radically different from each other, but each of them is at the top of their game and will do an amazing art book.

In addition to hitting 25% of goal in the few hours since their campaign went live they also have a secret weapon that all but assures success.

Ladies and Gentlemen: George².

He’s got a history in running independent publishers, a day job making comics happen for Oni, who have published one or two comics projects you may have heard of. He’s worked either high-level staff positions or behind the scenes of numerous conventions, appearing where things needed to be done and making the necessary arrangements. His cheery demeanor masks an organizational genius, one for whom the words on time and as promised carry the same import as I like to breathe do for ordinary civilians. It’s his involvement that makes me believe this line from the Kickstarter pitch:

If this goes well, it could be the foundation of a much bigger project in the future: Benign Kingdom could print more books, and maybe involve other artists! Thank you very much for your support!

… has already been planned for, and merely awaits the passage of time to bring to fruition. This isn’t a one-off, it’s a new publishing venture, much like Box Brown’s Retrofit Comics, with the intent to bring you stuff you wouldn’t get to see otherwise, from creators who need to connect to their audiences in a fundamental, dollars-and-cents way. In the time that I’ve been writing this, another 5% of funding has been achieved, including a top-tier reward³ (which I confess, I didn’t think would sell, but shows you what I know) claimed. Right now it’s four friends (plus George) working to a common goal, but in a year or two it could be the next Flight.

¹ For the moment, it’s not showing up in Kickstarter search, so use the direct link. I imagine that wil sort itself out in the next day or so.

² Or Mr Rohac, if you’re nasty.

³ The top-tier goes for US$1250, and the key differentiator from lower tiers is: You are drawn as the ruler of Benign Kingdom, by the four artists. As of this writing, four more instances of this reward are available, which opens the possibility of a dynastic conquest for the Benign Kingdom’s throne as the various pretenders vie with each other for supremacy. The resulting blood feud is expected to last for two and a half centuries.

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