“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Day 20

Since today was a Sunday, I had promised my wife to take it mostly off and spend it with her. Despite the date nights, it’s important, I think to have days where you’re pretty much completely off – especially gearing up for the final three days of pushing.

7:17 am to 9:20 am – finally updated this blog, messaged backers, sent thank you email to Uncommons

9:20 on – wife woke up and spent the day with her; highlights include: a food court place in the mall that’s actually worth going to, dinner at a vegan restaurant in Philly with a friend from high school, a game of Legendary: Villains, and coming up with new Cards Against Humanity cards while driving home.

Total Time Today: 2 hours, 3 minutes

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Days 16 through 19

Sorry for the lack of updates, folks. Leading into the last few days, which I’ve heard from many other successful creators can be a really crazy time, I’ve been spending more time with my wife and trying to recharge my proverbial batteries before the big final push – and I decided that getting back to backers . But, I have been keeping careful track of my hours…

Day 16

6:50 to 9:20 – messaged backers, wrote blog, messages on Twitter and Facebook

9:20 to 9:40 – got ready to leave for game day/night

9:40 to 10:20 – checked messages one last time and got into long Twitter exchange with someone who had playtested the PnP and had questions about rules

10:20 to 6:16 – printed out a friend’s prototype to playtest at different Staples and immediately regretted that decision when ten pages were going to “take a little bit and if you want to grab lunch and come back, that might be a good idea,” ate the worst felafel I’ve ever had for lunch, returned to Staples to find that the copying was still not done, waited, drove to gameday, missed my exit because my phone can’t seem to keep a connection to GPS, drove to next exit which was 20 miles away while cursing vigorously, finished delightful drive, had fun at game day including demoing Gothic Doctor (not counting it as work because, really, it was hanging out with friends of friends), one of the guys there told me that the Kickstarter had hit a new stretch goal

6:16 to 6:32 – posted a quick update with internet so slow that I had to type then wait for the words to appear on the screen

6:32 to end of night – hung out, played games

Total Time Today: 3 hours, 26 minutes


Day 17

wake up until 3:05 – hung out, played Smash Up for the first time, lunch at a diner, drove home

3:05 to 5:24 – talked to my FLGS about hosting a wrap party there, impulse bought the new Legendary expansion, drove home, planned about post-KS sales, emails about patient art, messaged with Matt Holden from IGA

5:24 to end of night – date night

Total Time Today: 2 hours, 19 minutes


Day 18

4:50 to 6:46 – business emails

6:46 to 8:43 – got ready for day, prepped for later tutoring

8:43 to 12:14 – business emails, emails about art, update to backers

12:14 to 5:05 – tutoring

5:05 to 5:24 – messaged backers

5:24 (my wife is consistent about when she gets home from work) to end of night – another date night

Total Time Today: 5 hours, 46 minutes


Day 19

7:22 to 8:38 – update images, messaged backers

8:38 to 9:13 – got ready to leave for demo in NYC

9:13 to 10:33 – drove to NYC

10:33 to 12:55 – brunch with a friend from high school, met his 11-week old daughter, enjoyed the general adorableness

12:55 to 7:10 – demoed at The Uncommons, drove home

7:10 to end of night – played Lego Marvel with my wife

Total Time Today: 8 hours, 51 minutes

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Day 15

7:32 to 8:10 – messaged backers, updated Twitter, did yesterday’s blog post today (yay time travel!!)

8:10 to 1:20 – ate breakfast with my grandfather, explained Kickstarter to my aunt (doesn’t count as work, I don’t think…), cleaned the house

1:20 to 6:52 – printed at Staples, got email saying we’re a Staff Pick, rushed home, sent out update, updated main image for project, cut entries for 24-hour contest, tested entries for 24-hour contest

6:52 to end – went to see the Rifftrax guys tear apart Sharknado, laughed a lot, ate Taco Bell in the theater, felt like a badass for sneaking it in, realized I wasn’t a badass, still enjoyed my bean burritos, ran into a backer and friend coming out of the theater, talked about the project for a minute (doesn’t count as work), came home, went to bed

Total Time Today: 6 hours, 10 minutes

Amazing Custom Box!

Jason from Talon Strikes Studios sent me a message on Twitter a few days ago letting me know that he was working on some artwork for the game and asking if he could have some info. I shared what he needed with him, and then two days later, he said, “It would help to speak with you about it,” and gave me his phone number. So, I called him, we had a great chat, and he told me that he’s working on a custom box for the game. Seems he found something in an antique store that just screamed “Gothic Doctor!!!” to him.

“Oh,” he said, “and I have a few vials. It might be cool to put them in, right?” Sure.

Then I got some pictures of the process, and I thought, “Wow. This is really, really cool.”

And then I saw the final product. Rather than tell you my reaction, I’ll just show you the pictures and you can react yourselves…

TSBox Book







Here’s a book that’s in the case.


TSBox Inside1TSBoxITC3TSBox Inside2














Here are a few shots of the inside of the case.


TSBox Dark






Here’s the inside of the case with the lights out. Because the light inside works. There. Is. A. Working. Light. Inside. The. Case.


TSBox ITC2TSBox ITC1TSBox Inside3













And lastly, here are a few close ups of the inside of the case.



Really amazing work from a really great craftsman! Great work on the case, Jason! Can’t wait to see what you do next – but if word gets out, designers are going to want a custom case for their games, too!

For those of you who want to hear more from Jason, he’s on Twitter as @TalonStrikes and on the web at TalonStrikes.com.

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Day 14

I took Day 13 off – hence no post for that day.

Day 14

7:55 to 8:42 – reviewed PnPs from the 24-hour contest we sponsored on BGG (voting still open!)

8:42 to 10:32 – brought wife something she forgot at work, went to doctor to get back adjusted

10:32 to 12:29 – finished reviewing PnPs, printed PnPs at Staples, Twitter, emails, messaged Kickstarter backers

12:29 to 2:18 – lunch w/ mom, watched The Wire, played Brave Rats and Paperback

2:18 to 4:08 – sent messages to backers, Twitter, Facebook, email

4:08 on – hung out with friends, slept

Total Time Today: 4 hours, 34 minutes

And, if you want to check out Gothic Doctor on Kickstarter, click here!

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Days 11 and 12

Another early post – along with a late one from yesterday, since I figure that sort of balances out, right?

Day 11

8:15 to 9:22 – mowed lawn

9:22 to 12:42 – messaged backers, updated KS, updated images

12:42 to 5:02 – tutoring, met friend for coffee

5:02 to 5:57 – messaged backers, emails with co-creator about art & stretch goals

5:57 to end – took the rest of the night off

Total Time Today: 4 hours, 15 minutes


Day 12

9:30ish to 11:30 – yardwork, fun with ladders and poison ivy

11:30 to 12:18 – Jack the Ripper research for newest backer-chosen patient

12:18 to 1:56 – ran errands

1:56 to 2:48 – tabulated votes, updated backers about new patients and actions, emailed artist and co-creator about art, updated images on Kickstarter for reached stretch goals, updated this here blog

2:48 to end – took rest of day and better part of tomorrow off because I need a break and the Kickstarter is hitting its mid-point slow down (though if you’re reading this and want to help ease that, you could always click here)

Total Time Today: 1 hour, 40 minutes

Lesson of the day: If you’ve done a lot of planning ahead of time, the Kickstarter is decidedly not like a full time job when the days are slow. Templates for images that you’ll be adding during the campaign are your friends.

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Day 10

Today’s entry is going to be earlier, because I owe my wife a date night. Like, really, really owe her a date night. So, she’s getting a date night.

7:36 to 11:02 – sent out update announcing new action cards and new patient card, finally caught up on messaging backers

11:02 to 1:41 – had lunch with former students, talked about things that weren’t Kickstarter, felt like a human

1:41 to 5:37 – messaged a few more backers, worked on updated images for the site to indicate that we funded, posted to Facebook & Twitter, talked with Matt Holden from Indie Game Alliance about how the project’s going, realized that there was something wrong with the videos on the page, tried to fix it, contacted Kickstarter because even reuploading the videos didn’t help, edited the page to note the problem to backers, went to show it to my wife, noticed that it had been fixed, re-edited the page, wrote this post and started date night…Goodnight, internet!

Total Time Today: 7 hours, 22 minutes

“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Days 7 through 9

Not post updates to you blog, apparently. 🙂

Day 7

8:08 to 12:43 – wrote thank yous, responded to tweets, posted an update, Twitter

12:43 to 2:04 – lunch with mom, got email that UnPub’s Kickstarter had launched, apologized to mom and backed it just in time to get a table

2:04 to 4:38 – tweeting, updating blog, messaging backers

Total Time Today: 7 hours, 9 minutes (plus five minutes of apologizing to my mom for being on my phone during lunch


Day 8

10:25 to 3:23 – completed cards for the early edition, computer crashed part way through, created new survey for action card and patient card voting, updated backers, drove to New York to demo

3:23 to 6:45 – hung out with Herb Ferman from Game and a Curry, played Gothic Doctor, played Paperback, ate burritos, played Splendor

6:45 to 12:33 – demoed Gothic Doctor at The Uncommons, drove home, realized I hadn’t done two things I needed to do via email, staggered into the house and sent emails

Total Time Today: 9 hours, 13 minutes


Day 9

7:30 am to 6:59 pm – spent time with my wife (off from work today), hung out with friend and her kid, she asked why I hadn’t responded to a question in the comments of the project, gave her a confused look and then responded to the question, hung out more with them, met former student for coffee, played Gothic Doctor and Paperback, tried yoga

6:59 to 9:43 – turned off voting for new cards, emails to backers, interview with Jeff King from All Us Geeks

Total Time Today: 2 hours, 44 minutes

Lesson of these three days: You need to make sure that you have built in “days off” from the project. If you work for 23 days straight, you’ll go insane. Driving home from NYC, I decided that Wednesday needed to be more of a break day – and that I needed to have more of those in the future. Sundays will be like that for the campaign – though things will also likely slow down once I get caught up on emails and as the mid-campaign slump (probably) happens.


“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Days 4 through 6

Holiday weekend + con + con-related exhaustion + funding + personal messages to all awesome backers = not getting to this for a few days. Sorry about that, everyone! But, the great record keeping is back! So here we go…

Day 4

9:04 to 10:13 – emails re art & stretch goals with co-creator, created survey for social stretch goals

10:13 to 1:38 – prepared for an ill-advised (but very fun) 4th of July party at our house

1:38 to 3:18 – caught up on sending out emails to backers, told guests I’d be with them in a minute, was with them in three minutes

3:18 on – party, no regrets, needed day at least partially off to prep for next two days

Total Time Today: 2 hours 49 minutes

Day 5

7:54 to 9:04 – drove to con

9:04 to 12:07 am – organized table that people had been very conscientious not to mess up, manned table, demoed, talked to Jeff (our artist) who came to con, introduced artist to others, demoed, wolfed down Chinese food, demoed, finally tried one game I had been meaning to play all con (Fire at Will), wolfed down tacos, demoed, demoed

12:07 to 1:09 – drove to friend’s house that was slightly closer than my house but not quite as close as I thought it was but at least I didn’t have to drive

Total Time Today: 23 hours, 15 minutes

Sprinkled in there might be an hour and a half of playing other games that I wanted to play or just having a breather with other designers – but not more than that… So, if you were wondering why I didn’t post… 🙂


Day 6

9:34 to 10:37 – picked up friend of friend, drove back to con

10:47 to 4:49 – demo, demo, demo, demo, test new game that was awesome, demo, demo, short break to play other awesome game, demo, clean table (maybe an hour and a half of non-Gothic Doctor gaming)

4:49 to 6:04 – drive home, promise wife on ride home that I won’t check Kickstarter and will just spend time with her

6:04 to 8:46 – relax, take walk, eat dinner, play co-op video game, need to find hidden item, use phone to check internet, see that I have 8 new emails almost all from Kickstarter, resist pull of checking, wife uses bathroom

8:46 to 10:46 – totally go back on promise, alternate between playing and checking emails, pace back and forth because we’re $81 away from funding for half an hour, tweet a bunch while pacing, respond to tweets [I’m going to count half of this time as time spent on the game – that’s probably close to fair and it was probably a little less time with my wife]

Total Time Today: 6 hours, 35 minutes


“What do you DO during a Kickstarter?” – Day 3

7:35 to 7:52 – awake because why would I want to sleep more than 5 hours before demoing all day at a con, that’s cool brain…thanks for that, no it’s fine, responded to FB posts, messaged backers

7:52 to 9:19 – talked to wife, showered, packed up, checked out, put stuff in car

9:19 to 7:57 – manned table, worked on early edition cards, helped a friend demo a game because he needed another player, demoed Gothic Doctor about seven times, answered a few emails, worked on cards more, realized I was getting less traffic because I had a computer open in front of me, put computer away, felt bad about not getting back to backers today, booth buddy showed up after work and me told me that the project was close to $5000, his arriving allowed me to get on Twitter, hit $5000, update to backers, upgraded sense of Kickstarter from “cautiously optimistic” to “optimistic,” got a backrub from Dave Simpson because he decided I looked tense, demoed Gothic Doctor

7:57 to 8:30 – dinner, breathing

8:30 to 9:32 – demoed Gothic Doctor, sat in on a playtest of Briefcase from Nazca Game (excellent micro game), cleaned up table and left note for folks who might come by tomorrow while I’m away, left pins and promo cards

9:32 to 10:54 – drove home; actually saw wife

10:54 to 11:22 – sent backer tracking number for STAT! package; updated blog

Total Time Today: 13 hours, 35 minutes (minus 5 minutes if you count the backrub)

Lesson of the day: Don’t have your computer out if you’re manning a con table. You’re there for people to talk to you. Demonstrate that you want to talk to them – and if you need to use your computer, just step away from the booth for a little bit.