My name is Jules Rivera and I’ve been very coy about announcing this project up until today. My intention for this project was to keep it quiet until I could pitch it to a publisher, get them excited about it, and then let you guys know how awesome I was that I got published like one of the big kids. But then an interesting question occurred to me:
Why should I wait on a publisher to build an audience for my new story?
After all, publishers pick up stories that are already popular and have an audience, or they’re created by someone with a lot clout. Publishing a book is first and foremost a financial investment, and publishers want to bank on something that can make their money back. That’s understandable. As far as clout goes, I don’t really have any. Start dropping my name at any convention and you’ll be met with responses like “Jules Rivera? Who the hell is that guy?” (Extra lulzy considering I’m a chick). So, the alternative is to start getting an internet audience excited about the project and build the name that way. People like my pretty pictures. Pretty pictures are an awesome way of getting people riled up.
So here it is, universe. I give you: Misfortune High.
The pitch: Misfortune High follows the misadventures of a blue blood student at a rich, prestigious magic school nicknamed Biscuit. Biscuit is on track to be a great wizard graduate of Phoenix Academy…until he is unceremoniously expelled. As a result of his expulsion, he is sent to Fortuna High 189, a public school nicknamed by the students as Misfortune High. MH is a cesspit hooligans and borderline criminals located in the bad part of town and the story follows Biscuit’s mission to get out of this hell hole and back to his cushy life at Phoenix Academy.
It’s a story of magic, class warfare, dragon slaying, adolescent hijinks, and learning that if you really want something in this world, you actually have to work for it.
THE FIRST of many Brovember-month trades, this one is of the awesome Warren from Jules’s Misfortune High! I knew I was gonna draw Warren eventually, it was just a question of, you know, how long before I do it… now we know.
Rich kid Biscuit gets expelled from his fancy magic school and sent to a magic school on the bad side of town. Mayhem ensues.
If you enjoy Princeless, you are exactly the sort of person who will enjoy Jules Rivera.
She illustrated the “Meet the Smiths” short for me in the first set of short stories and did both of the great purple covers that go with those issues.
Her kickstarter is up and it’s for the series she is writing and drawing called “Misfortune High”, all about a stuck up cheating rich kid who is booted from his private magic academy and forced to attend public magic school with the normal magic using kids.
Guys, it’s going to be great. Trust me and if you don’t check out Jules video and let her tell you why you should:
I’ve been dying to unveil these things. DYING. I’ll throw this into the Misfortune High updates post tomorrow, but for now, I wanted to let you know what we’ve been building towards: the charm set!
(All those references to the new reward being ‘charming’ were intended to be incredibly transparent.)
The stats are up there, but these are the preliminary designs before any holes have to be drilled. They show a little prettier this way. Backers into the tiers listed above will get not just one, but the entire set of 3 with either of those tier selections.
We’ve still got another 4 days and $500+ to go, but none of the incredible success this campaign has had would be possible without you guys. Thank you!
To those of you in the Los Angeles area, the wonderful folks at Nostalgia comics have agreed to host a live event to help promote the Misfortune High Kickstarter!
If you want to see me draw live, or you want to say hello, please stop by. I will be doing commissions with my snazzy markers (full color, guys), and I’ll even have swag and books to show in case you guys want to support the project, but don’t want to wait to see the goods. This is a one day event only, so stop by for the nonstop fun!
And it’s cool if you tell me you thought I’d be taller in person. I’m pretty short.
I bought Manga Studio EX over the Black Friday weekend because it was the best deal I could take advantage of in my underwear. The pen tools are pretty good, but the user interface is a little weird to get used to. It took me a little too long just to figure out how to zoom in the damn thing. Zoom. I mean, seriously? Zooming has to be hard?
Anyway, I believe it can be useful to my creation pipeline, but I need more time to get used to it, time I don’t have right now. However, at $30 I can afford to put it on the shelf for a few weeks while my schedule clears up long enough for me to sit down with it.
My first playthrough on dragon age games has always been a self insert character since the first time I played Origins til now. I don’t know why (it’s not intentional) but my self-insert from Inquisition has the eerily accurate misfortune of unintentionally falling off stuff a lot (I’m ridiculously clumsy in real life). My other inquisitors don’t have nearly as much misfortune in high places.
I’ve been neglecting this Tumblr with all my lovely storyboarding work. This is all work for my up and coming comic, Misfortune High, a story about a rich kid who has to go to a ghetto magic school. In this sequence, our hapless hero has (unwisely) decided to take on one of the school’s meanest fighters. It does not go so well.
The pitch: Biscuit is a privileged kid from the fanciest magic school in town. After he is found with cheating paraphernalia, he is expelled, and as punishment his father sends to a magic school on the bad side of town. Book 1 captures the opening of Biscuit’s story, as well as introduces a whole host of colorful characters from the other side of the train tracks. It’s a magic story with laughs, fun, dragonballs, and heart.
This was not possible without the recent push we got from all you Tumblr folks willing to take a chance on this property.
Now, we enter the stretch goal part of the program. As promised from the get-go, our first round of stretch goals cover adding stuff to the interior of the book.
First, is the Johnny Cuervo 10 Page side story. Currently, this story is nearly finished, needing only colors to pass the finish line (at 3+ pages a day, that’s a 3-day weekend’s worth of work). The Cuervo side story fleshes out a bit more as to what Johnny’s involvement with the dragon is and how he ends up in such a bizarre position in the first place. It’s a winner. I want it. You want it.
Next is the Pin Up Gallery and Middle School Letters. The pin-ups are contributions I’ve gotten from other artists that I’m dying to include in this book. And the middle school letters come from the students I visit in San Jose. I’ll let one such young man, Joshua, do the rest of the talking about how he felt about Book 1:
I like how your story starts with something that is in the middle of your story…I like how there is a cliffhanger. That makes me know there is going to be a second book..If I had to say an improvement it would be to make the next chapters a little longer because this chapter was a little to short.
–Joshua, 8th Grade San Jose student
36 pages of story weren’t enough for this guy. YES. These letters are beyond precious. You’ve gotta see them all.
Finally (for now), is the Ruination t-shirt and extra charms. Johnny Cuervo’s shirt from book 1 is a little more complicated and pricey to print than the book 2 ’Death from Above’ design. However, if we push the boulder up the hill a bit further, I believe we can make Ruination happen.
That’s what I’ve got for stretch goals now. There are still two days left in this campaign to push things even higher. Let’s do this!
The Misfortune High Kickstarter has just cracked its last milestone before the big goal of $3000. THAT’S AMAZING. The latest milestone sketch is of Sonia desperately trying to touch her toes. Running a Kickstarter is kind of like that. The toes are right in front of you. You’re almost there. You can almost taste the toes (but don’t)! Just…a….little….further!
Also, by popular demand, Add-Ons are now available so you can add little extra doodads and sketches to your order that your the existing rewards tiers don’t cover. Here’s the price list:
Price List (Limit 10 on all items except where otherwise posted)
Misfortune High Book 1 $5
MH Post Card Set $9
MH Exclusive Dragon Print $5
Sonia Sculpt $40
Valkyrie Squadron Book 1 $7
Valkyrie Squadron Book 1-3 Set $18
Valkyrie Squadron Charm $10
Marker Commission $15
Digital Commission $50
If you’ve already pledged, just add on the extra money and send a message with what you’re ordering so I can record for my special requests list. If you haven’t pledged, just add on the extra price to your pledge and send a message with your requested items. Same deal, different buttons.
Just another reminder the Misfortune High Kickstarter Live event is taking place tomorrow! If you are the Los Angeles area and want to check it out, here are the details:
October 19, 12 - 3 PM
10922 ½ Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90064
(Park in the mall lot off Westwood for 3 hours free parking)
I’ll be doing free marker sketches for the duration as well as chatting people up on the Kickstarter and all the goodies therein. We’re currently in stretch goal mode, but we want to take it to the next level adding awesome stuff like UV coating to the cover and even more swag. There’s a special 125 backer bonus that’ll go out to all backers involved so stay tuned for that if that goes down.
The progress we’ve made is so exciting and it’ll be even more exciting to meet new and current supporters in person. See you there!