Andrew Shields

is creating Serial Fiction and Role Playing Games
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What I'm Thinking
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Would you like to see essays about how I think about writing? These backers can get my thoughts on what's important, what stands in the way, and what this process feels like. More personal blogging-style engagement with the author and the material.
Ante Up
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Thank you for your patronage! You get a 5,000 word chapter of serial fiction set in Doskvol every 2 weeks (or the equivalent) as well as a look at drafts and digital files for other role playing game or fiction projects. When novels are complete, you get an ebook. And you get your name at the back of Patreon supported projects.

All In
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You’re serious about supporting my ongoing work. You also get access to behind-the-scenes analysis and essays on influences that shape my creative processes. 




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About Andrew Shields

Welcome to the online home of Shields Up! Publishing. If you join this community of patrons, you too can be a Tactical Officer. (Because they’re the ones to raise the shields; it’s a Star Trek pun.) Thank you for coming to look at my page.

About Me

I am a creator with a day job and a long history of writing fiction and tinkering with role playing games. I want the best for my wife and children. That means financing our enterprise with my work, and it also means keeping my own creative spark alive and burning. This Patreon serves both goals. It has provided me with structure and connection to a wider community, helping me stay on track with creating even as I am stretched by developing my skills in dealing with the necessary work of publishing (instead of writing alone.)

So How Does This Work?

You can watch a short video that explains the process here. Look to the upper right of this page for the button "Become a Patron." You can choose your level of investment, and you can make adjustments any time you like.

I will collect your pledge once a month. Meanwhile you have access to all the Doskvol fiction, drafts of game projects, and digital documents of work supported by the Patreon. I will make as much of the finished work free to the public as possible, with your support.

What Is The Flagship of this Patreon?

Every two weeks by Sunday night I post a 5,000 word chapter in a serial novel (or the equivalent of a chapter.)

John Harper wrote a tabletop role playing game called "Blades in the Dark." The game stakes out extremes along several lines.

  • Gothic. The city runs on distilled demonic blood. Superstitious methods have been more or less replaced by scientific processes, but the divide remains uneasy—a line to cross and re-cross to reinforce that Gothic feel.

  • Industrial. New technology, mass production, post-war; life is cheap. Conflict and corruption are driven by the widening gap between those who work and those who control the means of production. Crime becomes one of the only means for social mobility. Crushing poverty highlights the cost of new technology, while aristocrats protect themselves from the consequences of change as best they can.

  • Fantasy. Ghosts and demons permeate the setting; the Gates of Death were shattered centuries ago, and supernatural energy infuses everyone. Exceptional individuals rise to manipulate those energies.

  • Noir. The world runs on suffering and it's beyond fixing. Nobody expects a happy ending and innocents are suckers. You take your shot and if you survive, try to forget what success cost you. It's not about right and wrong so much as right now and the wrong risks.

My stories are spun in this setting, using the archetypes and target play style to inflame the imagination of those who play the game and to provide an entertaining tourist experience for those who don't play but want to visit the world and get to know some of its scoundrels.

Where Does the Money Go?

Self-publishing is relatively cheap, but it isn't free. I pay for ISBN numbers, font licenses, copyright expenses, professional layout, and so on out of my lifestyle funds. Not only does this Patreon counterbalance those expenses, but it also gives me breathing space with my ongoing cost of living, and breathing space is very useful for the creative process.

What is my vision for the future as this Patreon grows? Money erodes barriers between making creative things and releasing them to the public. With more funding, I can loosen those constraints; having funds to get professional layout and basic art for some projects would be great, and if I could escalate to getting a professional editor for my projects that would be excellent. In the meantime I must be mindful of my obligations, and the better I fund them, the easier it is to maneuver between them and the commitment to this ongoing creative project.

In Conclusion

One chapter at a time, I'm building novels. One novel at a time, I'll build a scenic overview for a delightfully shadowed setting. Meanwhile, I will continue writing play reports of games I run, and I will continue developing games to release for others to play and enjoy.

Thank you for coming by to take a look. My patrons are incredible, standing by my work and watching these stories unfold. I hope you will join us; there is a lot more yet to tell.
$93 of $200 per creation
We want to share!

If I complete a book of fiction (writing, layout, cover, ISBN's, the whole process) and my patrons are contributing $200 per month, then I will share the ebook for free. Readers will still be able to buy paperbacks and hardbacks, so I can still profit from sales, but the barrier between readers and the story will be famously low--because of you.
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