I know everyone has been waiting impatiently for episode two. It’s been a long time coming, but we’re ready at last to begin the process. Doing independent projects can be difficult if you’re trying to make a short look professional but doing it on a shoe-string budget. It’s also difficult when you’re trying to make sure everyone working on the project can get paid, but I feel very strongly that this needs to happen in order to insure that professional quality we’re looking to create.
I’m looking forward to lots more updates as we move through the crowdfunding campaign and into the preproduction and production phases. Once we’ve shot the short, we then have the post fun, and THEN, finally, we’ll have an Episode Two to share with the world.
I’m extremely proud of my team and I look forward to introducing everyone in the weeks to come.
Check Out the Episode Two IndieGoGo!
The episode is up and running, both here and on YouTube. We finally have the show up on IMDB and I just got my awesome composer, Tyler David Gilbert, up on CD Baby and where you can buy his singles here on the website. I finally feel like I am crossing the “t” and dotting the “i” on Episode One.
This isn’t really the case though. The big push now will be to get people to watch the video, share with friends, and review it if possible. I wrote a press release last week, and this week will be all about sending that out into the world.
I had a vague notion when I started this project of the amount of work it would be, but I really did underestimate it. As I’ve said before, triple whatever resource you think you’re going to need. And since I can’t replicate myself, I either need to recruit two other people or I need to give myself three times as long to do things.
As I’m looking at what all we’ve accomplished, I am very proud of how far we’ve come. I know we’re going to be back at it again trying to fund and get Episode Two made. But for just this moment, I want to just sit and stare at our IMDB page and be really proud.
Last year on the 12th of June my Indiegogo campaign for Tales of the Sword ended.
I had initially asked for $6,000 and we raised $541 through Indiegogo, and had some direct, “after the bell” donations that followed.
With that in hand, we moved forward on the production…
It’s been a year, and we are in the last moments of finishing the first episode. I am meeting with my colorist and composer on Thursday for probably our last notes meeting. Depending on how many changes need to be made, we may be locking the episode shortly after.
Part of me wanted all of this to move much faster than it did, though it would have taken a lot more capital for that to happen. But there’s the other part of me that realizes that everything has happened exactly as it should and that the end result is going to be a beautiful piece of work of which everyone involved can be proud.
Once we lock, we’ll schedule the cast/crew screening, then it will be up on this site for viewing. Then after a bit, we’ll be going back to the fundraising trail to see if people are willing to fund an Episode Two! And hopefully Episode Two will take less than a year to create!
I’ve learned a lot about producing from this, and I think that my expectations will be more realistic for round two. I definitely know more about the costs in both time and money that an endeavor like this requires. But I also know that I am working with some of the most creative and wonderful individuals, so I’m confident in a way I wasn’t quite before that we can make a full season of really incredible content.
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. I would say that art is a kind of necessity itself. Those who are artist need to create or we feel unfulfilled in a profound way. As a writer, I enjoy reading my own words, but without being able to share them with others, I am only partially doing what I feel I was put on this planet to do.
I had been working on a number of other webseries and feature film scripts and starting to feel a massive amount of frustration that nothing was getting made. I was waiting for someone to give me the shot and bring my words to life for me on film/video. And one day, I’d had enough waiting…
I started an Indiegogo campaign in hopes of raising the funds to shoot the series. I had six episodes outlined with six more generally plotted and three that were fully written. I went into the project with the commitment that no matter what happened, I would shoot something with whatever funds I had raised and I would make sure that even if it was just a little bit, I would pay my cast and crew something. In Hollywood we are often asked to collaborate on projects for no money with the promise that it “will be good for our careers,” but at a certain point, we all need to be able to put food on our table and pay our rent. If we are to be professionals, we need to be treated as professionals. I didn’t want to start out my career as a producer asking people to work for free, just as I had been working for free for so long now.
Our Indiegogo fund fell short of our goal, but we got to keep what we raised, and that gave me the ability to start out the process making the first episode come to fruition. I shifted which episode I wanted to shoot first to one that had limited cast and what I felt would be a simple location. I sought the help of the great guys at Inner Image Media for the production and post production. We shot the opening credit sequence on green screen with the help of some amazing folks. And then, months later, after rehearsals and setbacks, we shot “Tales of the Sword: A Lady’s Honor.”
The one thing I have found out from producing is that everything takes three times as long and costs three times as much as you think it’s going to. There have been so many learning moments working on the first episode that it would probably take too long to list them here. Let me just say that I am overwhelmed with gratitude to our Indiegogo donors for giving us the seed money to start this adventure, my cast and crew for all the hard work and dedication, and my post production team for being wizards with what they do.
I am blessed to have been able to bring my words to life, and I look forward to bringing you more episodes of TotS in the future. Until then, create and live your own adventures!!