A webcomic that has all of these favorite things: Snow by Night
The eponymous Snow-by-Night is a winter spirit in search of her heart in a colonial frontier city, who gets tangled up in the plots of two local thieves, Blaise and Jassart. Blaise is fickle, but good-natured, while Jassart is clever, but often opportunistic. Seeing the potential of having a magical being on-call for their heists, they convince her to help them, promising to help her find her heart. One of them has every intention of fulfilling that promise…someday, at least. As for the plans of the other, they take the merry band down a very different road.
For those of you that love diving into a richly developed world, the setting of Snow by Night is well researched and thought through. (I’ve never seen a bibliography for a webcomic before, but the writer, Eric Menge, has clearly done his homework!) For the truly hard-core, the site has a detailed Almanac filled with information that covers everything from warfare to alchemy.
Set in a fantasy version of French Canada in the midst of an Age of Discovery, the world blends historical fact with the mythological and alchemical. This realm holds creatures of wonder, ancient spirits, magical brews and monsters, and the potent (and much desired) aether of living things, juxtaposed with the war, trade, and exploration of the time. Ever thought of bringing a Chimera to battle? Or considered exactly how much gun powder you’d need to blow it up? Eric has, and the result is both frightening and spectacular.
The Artwork and Characters
The story is illustrated by many different artists, including several small vignettes between chapters. These vignettes give the reader brief glimpses into the lives of the various people you meet in the tale. The added depth of this context enhances the story and gives you a peek behind the curtain at the loves and losses of the compelling characters that inhabit this world.
Join in the Exploration!
If all of this sounds AWESOME to you (and it should!!) then you’ll be excited to know that this is a great time to discover this incredible tale. Why? Because they are running a Kickstarter to collect this great story, and lots of cool bonus content, RIGHT NOW.
One of the reasons I chose to feature this story is not just that it’s a great tale, but also that it’s created by a great person. Eric is one of the most supportive people I’ve met in the community. He goes out of his way to help and encourage other people, and even opened his home to me when I made my first solo trip to an out of state convention a year or two ago. He has a delightful family of creative, kind people, and a daughter that is almost a spirit of nature herself, with all her whirling energy! I was honored by the kindness he showed me during my visit, and I would like to support him in turn.
If you’re like me, you want to invest in more than just a story. You want to help good people make great things. This project is one of those opportunities, and I hope you give it a look!
Robin Childs is addicted to storytelling, with specialties in world-building, character crafting, and language making. You can find the results of her storytelling pursuits at LeyLinesComic.com! Or drop a line on Twitter at RobinofLeyLines. If you are struggling with your own storytelling troubles, she offers a variety of developmental editing services!