It's going to be several months before Carpe Astra is ready as I've chosen a slower German company to do the manufacturing (they are a lot cheaper, which means I can sell it for less). The downside is that with It's Alive! sold out I have nothing left to sell. If I don't get something else out in the meantime, then I'm going to be without games income for several months. I've still got some money coming in from the Library (where I'm doing some consultancy), but it's not a huge amount (though it's for very few days). Also, my replacement started this week. I'll be required to do some induction training for him, but he'll be able to take over fairly shortly, at which point that source of income will dry up too.
So, I've been thinking about ways to bridge the gap until the Carpe Astra is ready. One thing I considered was another hand-made run of something. I had a promising little abstract, but I don't think I'd be adding enough value to that by doing a hand-made edition, and of course, the unit price will be high doing a short run.
The other thing I've been considering is a professional re-print of It's Alive! I think there's still a market for it (a couple of other publishers have registered an interested in it), especially in the US, where the combination of airmail shipping and the appalling exchange rate made the hand-made edition very expensive.
Thinking about this a bit more, it has a number of advantages:
- The artwork is nearly ready. I'd change a couple of things for the second edition: I'm not entirely happy with the box illustration and the leg card is frequently mistaken for an arm, but other than that it's pretty much ready to go.
- I'd replace the wooden coins with card tokens, so Carta Mundi would be able to turn it around really quickly (three/four weeks).
- It's a known quantity. There's reviews, ratings and information about it. Customers want it. As a result it'll be easier to sell to shops/distributors than a brand-new unknown game. Once I've got my foot in the door it should be easier to sell Carpe Astra to them later.
I'm just waiting on a quote (again!) to find out if it's viable.