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Help Fund my Robot Army!!! & Other Improbable Crowdfunding Projects
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Help Fund my Robot Army!!! & Other Improbable Crowdfunding Projects

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  382 ratings  ·  79 reviews
If you’re a regular backer of Kickstarters, you’ve probably seen some unique crowdfunding projects in your time. But one thing all of those campaigns—boringly!—had in common was: They abided by the physical laws of the universe!

HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!! is an anthology of science fiction/fantasy stories told in the form of fictional crowdfunding project pitches, using t
Nook, 376 pages
Published October 1st 2014 by John Joseph Adams (first published June 30th 2014)
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3.66  · 
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 ·  382 ratings  ·  79 reviews

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Jun 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, 2014
Writing a story in the form of a Kickstarter page is a genius idea to begin with, and that idea was Keffy R.M. Kehrli's. Putting together an entire anthology of such ideas was John Joseph Adams's genius idea, as well as crowdfunding it via Kickstarter because duh.

HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!! and Other Improbable Crowdfunding Projects contains over thirty fictional Kickstarters of the SFF persuasion (you'll find nothing as adorably mundane as a grandmother making canes here). As in any themed antho
Ben Rowe
Jan 07, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sf-short
A collection of stories written as kickstarter style campaigns. The book is actually more fun and creative than it sounds with several of the stories making me laugh out loud and one or two evoking other feelings as well. The joke and concept wears a bit thin though and this might have been partly because of extra content from it exceeding its funding requirement but it did feel like there were more stories in the collection than there needed to be. Normally this would be a silly critisism of a ...more
Sidsel Pedersen
Jul 03, 2014 marked it as reading-collection
"A Memorial to the Patriots" by Jake Kerr: Weird more than good. I was rather confused by the end

"I just read "For Entertainment Purposes Only" by Jeremiah Tolbert this afternoon and it of course made me smile, which was just what I wanted to happen. I have to say that the comments are brilliant.

"I want to be a Lioness" by Chuck Wendig: I quite liked this story. The comment section was used really effectively. It reminded me of "if you were a dinosaur my love".

"Liberty: Seeking Support For Writ
Aug 23, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There are a handful of five-star stories in this book. There are also several rather pedestrian and repetitive stories in this book. They're not all funny, though comedy is overwhelmingly the M.O. One of the best—maybe even the best—of the stories is not comedy at all.

Was definitely worth the 99¢ I paid.
Bandinnelli Bandinnelli
Apr 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, owned, humor
Un breve comentario en Not a Review:
Amy (Other Amy)
Jun 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: SFF short story lovers, approach it as haiku in story form
TL;DR version: Read the stories by Connolly, Cook, Williamson, Penn Romine, Sullivan, Levine, Broaddus, Wrigley, Bolander, and McGuire. SKIP the ones by Tolbert, Pratt, and Howard and your life will be better for it. For the rest, your mileage may vary depending on your own personal obsessions and expectations. Overall, though those ten stories that make the must read cut are well worth the $5 for this collection.

Full review: Short story is a difficult art. To paint a world and its characters an
Ruth Belmonte
Feb 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Básicamente escogí este libro porque el titulo me llamó la atención y no me he arrepentido.
He tenido malas experiencias con otras antologías porque los relatos eran muy diferentes en términos de estilo y a veces calidad. Aquí no pasa. Los relatos están formateados como si estuviéramos leyendo un proyecto de crowdfunding y los autores utilizan los diferentes elementos para contar sus historias, eso hace que los cambios de estilo no sean muy grandes. Me parece un concepto muy interesante el limit
Sep 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fantastic collection of "stories"!
This book has a very specific target audience - namely those who have at least some experience with crowdfunding (especially Kickstarter). Those who do not will probably not "get" the format of the stories, or they will at least not work too well for them. However, if you are part of the target audience, then GO READ THIS BOOK! Especially if you have backed a dozen or more crowdfunding projects. It is THAT GOOD.

There are hilarious, weird, disturbing, and
Siobhan Johnson
I LOVED this. Great concept, fun realization of said concept and a really high quality of work overall. Obviously every single anthology has ups and downs in terms of quality, but this one managed a (generally) consistent high that was really pleasing to me.

Favourite(s): Seanan McGuire's take on a halloween kickstarter was fun as hell, Mary Robinette Kowal's Romeo and Juliet in Space (with puppets) made me laugh hysterically and then force my fiance to read it so he could laugh hysterically too,
Peter Aronson
Many of the stories in this collection are very clever, many are funny, a few are poignant. However, the restrictions of the crowd sourcing format and subject matter makes them all seem slight and of a sameness. It's a little bit like having whipped cream for dinner. I suspect these stories would have done better mixed in a more heterogeneous anthology. The Seanan McGuire story did stand out though.
Paul Harmon
Oct 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Though the premise is cute about half way through it begins to wear thin and become a bit monotonous which is probably why they tried to throw some of the bigger authors and better stories (Scott Sigler) into the second half. I seem to always find anthologies a bit of a mixed bag and almost all of the ideas here arent bad but the premise does grate after awhile.
Jason Kivela
Nov 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was my "on my phone" book. I only read it if I was stuck someplace with out anything to do (waiting rooms, trains, etc.). Tons of short little stories, an awesome way or writing them. Many were very funny, some bitter sweet, some horrific. Great collection all around.
Garrett Mccutcheon
Some were fun but after the first few the novelty wears off.

I liked many of the stories. Some were quirky, others played with the format in creative ways. After a few, though, it began to feel repetitive.
Ray (user2637)
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
So Juicy Transforming Strips is the b.e.s.t story! Hilarious and flabbergasting. Some others I liked: LARPing, Halloween, Taphognosis, Mechanical Animals, YOLO.
Bruce Gargoyle
Ten Second Synopsis:
A collection of funny, serious, creepy, crawly and cheeky stories based on imaginary kick starter projects.

There are 33 stories in this anthology and the majority of them are written by accomplished (to a greater or lesser degree) authors in the sci-fi/spec fiction realm. Every single one of them follows the format of a Kickstarter crowdfunding pitch and while some others who have reviewed this collection on Goodreads mentioned that this format quickly got stale for them, I d
Zachary Littrell
Jul 15, 2015 rated it liked it
This mixed-bag of an anthology would honestly get a 3.5 from me, if I could give a half star. Real shame, too, considering this project assembled some world class writers to a simple theme -- make up a wild or fantastic kickstarter.

First, the good. Some of the writers really embraced the Kickstarter story format -- a weird hybrid of epistolary stories and internet culture -- and made some really unique experiences. Here are some of my personal favorites:

"I WANT TO BE A LIONESS" -- I really, real
Lee Dunning
Oct 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
I don't usually read anthologies. The main reason is when I do grab them it's because there is one, maybe two, authors participating who I know/like. I end up enjoying their stories (maybe) and hating the rest, closing the book at the end feeling a tad cheated.

I feared this book would be no different. I picked it up because Chuck Wendig used his mind powers and convinced me to try it. Once I owned it, however, I noted that not only had he participated, but other writers I like - Mur Lafferty (Sh
Feb 03, 2017 rated it liked it
I think there was a point last year where I decided that I should be seeking out more short fiction, which unfortunately got turned by my mind into "pick up any book that has more than one author and some cheap gimmick."

The gimmick here is that each story is a kickstarter campaign, with a pitch, pledge rewards and comment sections to tell a tale. There's a few urban fantasy but mostly near-future SF. I started breaking down stories into a few categories: the Frankenstein story ("What could possi
Bruce Baugh
Feb 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is a collection of short stories about people trying to get others to help them with a variety of science-fictional projects, from the titular robot army to the first writ of habeus corpus for a synthetic being to sending Mary Robinette Kowal and David Tennant into space long enough that they can perform _Romeo and Juliet_ with puppets. The gimmick here is that each of these stories is written in the form of a Kickstarter pitch. In his introduction, Adams says that the title piece came his ...more
John Patrick
Jul 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was another great book I got through Kickstarter. Which is kind of meta because it's a book dedicated to improbable crowd funding stories. I immediately jumped on board because a) who doesn't want a robot army and b) I have something of a weakness for kickstarter (It's not an addiction. I can stop any time I want. It's not my fault they continue to tempt me with things that I want.) Plus I am a big fan of John Joseph Adams short fiction anthologies so getting in on this project was a no-bra ...more
Blaine Moore
Jul 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommended to Blaine by: Jason Gurley
This book had some great points...and some not so great points. Some of the stories were excellent, and lent themselves really well to the KickStarter format. "Flashed Forward" by Bradley Beaulieu, for example, was an excellent and very enjoyable read, about a time traveler. I also really enjoyed Jake Kerr's "A Memorial to the Patriots" about terrorists in a big brother-esque United States. Both stories (and a few others) did a great job leading the reader through the world of their KickStarter ...more
Sebastian H
Jul 20, 2015 rated it liked it
Writing a short story presents different challenges than a full-lenght novel, the main crux of it being the essential lenght constrains. But how about we also add a structural element to the obstacles? Say, the story has to be told in a certain manner, be it first-person, involving a fantastical invention or in the shape of a Kickstarter pitch.

This innovative collection corresponds to the latter, obviously. As such, it's a hit-or-miss (mostly hits, mind you) collection of short stories, firmly s
Jun 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
I think the title of the collection may skew a person's impressions of the types of stories that are found inside. I was expecting the tone of the book to be over all humorous. And while there are more than a few funny "projects" included, it ends up feeling nicely balanced by stories like Jake Kerr's "A Memorial to the Patriots" and Samuel Peralta's "Liberty: Seeking Support for a Writ of Habeas Corpus for a Non-Human Being".

I would say that most of the stories included are really good. I there
Aug 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Adams has composed another great anthology, this time one that perfectly captures the spirit of well-run crowdfunding campaigns. The stories cross the spectrum of sci-fi subgenres and range from humorous to heart wrenching. Most of the stories have a humorous to satirical tone, but there are a few that veer into the tragic and serious. I found those to be both impactful and refreshing; they provided great balance in the context of the work overall.
The stories themselves were great and provided t
Dione Basseri
This book emulates the Kickstarter text style so well! Definitely use default fonts when reading this, or you'll miss out on a good bit of the experience. The projects in this book range from something I'd be a bit interested in to straight up totalitarian and scary. But they're all there for a laugh. Even when the world they create is basically incompatible with human life, they're presented with such deadpan seriousness that it winds up being funny.

And kudos to JJA for actually Kickstarting a
Dec 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a brilliant and unusual take on the short-story anthology. In the words of the editor: "I came across a story by Keffy R.M. Kehrli called “HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!!” which was told in the form of a fictional Kickstarter pitch. My first thought when I read the story was: This story is really funny. My second thought was: I should build an anthology around it. My third thought was: Obviously the anthology should be published via a crowdfunding campaign."

Show your support for arena Tetris,
Marcelo Sanchez
Apr 07, 2016 rated it liked it
Un montón de historias puestas en formato KickStarter. Si es por innovación, este libro se lleva todos los premios.
Mi principal problema con este libro es que es un libro mayormente de premisas, salvo unos pocos casos donde ocurre un poco de historia propiamente tal. Pero la mayor parte de los casos es un trozo de proyecto con ciencia ficción o fantasía no convencional, donde la venta está en los chistes. Después de un rato puede volverse repetitivo.
El formato es muy interesante y hay historias
Oct 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Hit and miss, like many anthologies, but an enjoyable read all in all. My favourites were the stories by David D. Levine (ingenious) and Bradley Boulieu (heart rending). The format got old quite fast so I think in this case less (i.e., fewer stories) would have been more. However, the stories were short enough so if one didn't do it for me, I hadn't wasted too much time on it. Hm, this doesn't sound like a four-star review, but honestly, I had fun reading it.
Aug 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: anthology, scifi
This Kickstarted anthology suffers from one flaw: the sheer number of stories that are told in the format of crowdfunding campaigns. It isn't that the tales are repetitive, but the format is so restrictive that after reading several in a row that the delight starts to fade. The same thing happens with flash fiction, so while I recommend this book as well, I would suggest you dip your toe in every so often rather than try to binge on it.

Colette Chadwick
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a great anthology. These stories are so very creative, and the format is fantastic. Some stories are sad, some creepy and some will make you laugh out loud.

My favorites are Liberty by Samuel Peralta, Zero G R&J by Mary Robinette Kowal and Jerome 3.0 by Jason Gurley. I love that anthologies give an opportunity to sample authors that I am not familiar with.
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John Joseph Adams is the series editor of BEST AMERICAN SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY. He is also the bestselling editor of many other anthologies, such as ROBOT UPRISINGS, DEAD MAN'S HAND, BRAVE NEW WORLDS,WASTELANDS, and THE LIVING DEAD. Recent and forthcoming books include WHAT THE #@&% IS THAT?, OPERATION ARCANA, PRESS START TO PLAY, LOOSED UPON THE WORLD, and THE APOCALYPSE TRIPTYCH (cons ...more
“No more using your imagination. You’ll get to play LARPing the Apocalypse in a real depopulated wasteland,” 0 likes
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