Worldbuilders – a way to change the world

Patrick Rothfuss
Patrick Rothfuss

I think it’s safe to say that Patrick Rothfuss is a fine human being. Not only does he write fantasy books that have taken the world by storm, but more importantly, he helps feed the world, and thereby sends love to those in need. Each year, Rothfuss spearheads an event known as Worldbuilders. It is a way in which anyone can donate to a wonderful cause, and enter to win cool stuff at the same time.

What’s this ‘wonderful cause’? It’s called Heifer International. It’s an organization in which all the donations go to endowing needy families around the world with the means both eat, and keep eating (live) for years to come. Heifer donates things like flocks of chickens so families can raise them and have eggs, and the chickens will produce more chickens. Donations also go to giving families goats for milk, and trees for shade and wood. It’s something that I believe in and it’s a great way to support a fantastic cause.

You don’t have to donate a lot. Do you have $1? Do you have $5? Even if you don’t have this much to give, you have the means to send a blessing or a smile or well wishes to those who don’t have what most of us in the developed world do.

I’ve included the first page of Rothfuss’s Worldbuilders kick-off for 2012. It was written back on November 15th, but it is going strong and will run until 17 January next year. You can also follow Patrick Rothfuss’s blog here.

I encourage you all to act in some way.

A beautiful and rich holiday to you.





November 15, 2012

Worldbuilders 2012

What’s that you say? You want to make the world a better place while winning fabulous prizes?

Well today is your lucky day.

Heifer International is my favorite charity. It helps people raise themselves up out of poverty and starvation. Heifer promotes education, sustainable agriculture, and local industry all over the world.

They don’t just keep kids from starving, they make it so families can take care of themselves. They give goats, sheep, and chickens to families so their children have milk to drink, warm clothes to wear, and eggs to eat.

(Are you ready? I’m so ready. Let’s do it.)

Pay attention now, you’ve got a couple different options for donating.

Option 1: The Lottery.

This is the option most people will want. It’s simple. You hop directly over to the page I’ve set up on Team Heifer, and donate.

When you donate on that page, two things happen.

1. You’ll move us closer to our stretch goals (shown below).

2. You’ll be entered in the lottery.

After the fundraiser is over, we’ll have a random drawing for all the swag that’s been donated. Thousands of books, comics, DVD’s and other cool miscellany.

For every 10 bucks you donate, your name will get entered into the drawing once. If you donate thirty bucks, your name goes in three times. Think of it as buying tickets, if you like.

We’ve had *way* too many books donated to post them all up at once. So I’ll be putting up a blog full of donated books every day or so, just to keep y’all from being overwhelmed.

Make sure to check back often to see the new coolness.

  • Books from DAW
  • More Lovely Signed Books
  • More Books Still from DAW
  • The Now-Legendary Stardust ARC
  • Books from Prime
  • Fan-Donated Books
  • Miscellaneous Coolness
  • And More….

Last year, book-lovers and geeks from all over the world helped us raise more than $310,000 for Heifer International. It was a stunning display of generosity and goodwill.

Still, I think we can do even better.

In order to encourage people to donate, we have some stretch goals this year. Every time we raise another 50K, something new and cool will be added to the fundraiser.

I’ll go into more detail about some of these stretch goals as they get closer. But the first of these is a request that’s come from the regular readers of my blog. Over the years, I’ve had countless requests that I explain the details about the calendar and the currency system of the Four Corners.

So. After we hit 50K, that’s just what I’ll do. I’ll spill some of the secrets of my world onto the blog. And for the hardcore geeks out there, we’ll even put up a cool widget that will do conversions between Vintish pennies and Cealdish jots.

  • $50,000: Details about the currencies and calendar of Four Corners revealed.
  • $100,000: Pat’s favorite things added to the Lottery
  • $150,000: An interview and public Q&A with Amber Benson.
  • $200,000: A chance to visit Heifer Ranch with Pat Rothfuss.
  • $250,000: Books from Pat’s private horde added to the lottery.
  • $300,000: A Favor from Pat added to the lottery.
  • $350,000: Secret-Surprise Stretch Goal #1.
  • $400,000: An extra $100,000 donated to Heifer.
  • $450,000: SUPER-Secret-Surprise Stretch Goal #2.
  • $500,000: Trey Ratcliff and Pat Rothfuss visit a Heifer project in Nepal and report back to you.

You can donate over here on our Team Heifer Donation Page.

Note: Worldbuilders ends January 18th, 2012 at 11:59 pm CST.  All donations must be in before then to qualify for the lottery.

Option 2: The Sure Thing.

Or, as I like to think of it, the Christmas Present Option.

For those of you who aren’t interested in the lottery, we have some stuff you can just buy.

Our store, lovingly named The Tinker’s Packs, has t-shirts, posters, and other coolness available for purchase. We also have a slew of foreign editions donated and signed by the authors. Portuguese, German, Spanish, Japanese…. These editions are really hard to find if you live here in the US, and we have a *lot* of them.

All proceeds from the store go to Worldbuilders, of course.

Additionally, this year we’ve produced a Fantasy Themed Pin-Up Calendar. Every month showcases a different fantasy author, either featuring a character from a book (Like Cersei Lannister from Martin’s Game of Thrones) or an homage to the author’s work (Like the Fahrenheit 451 inspired pin-up of Bradbury’s.)

You can click on the image below to see the author’s names, and get glimpses of the illustrations.

If you’re interested in seeing some full images and the classic pinups that inspired them, I highly recommend checking out the blog Lee Moyer wrote on the subject.

N.K. Jemisin posted up her page along with a fascinating blog talking about how she worked together with Lee on the painting of Oree. You can also see Neil Gaiman’s page over on his blog. It’s one of my favorites. His wife, Amanda Palmer, posed as the model for Media from American Gods.

And, of course, there’s more images on the order page in The Tinker’s Packs.

We’ll be posting a lot of new stuff in the store over the next month. So stay tuned….

  • Signed Art and First Edition Books.
  • Geeky Miscellany.

Option 3: Auctions.

Last year we did a few auctions and they seemed to work out pretty well. So this year we’re continuing in that fine tradition, auctioning off some of the rarer and more specialized services people have donated.

This year we have professionals who are willing to read and critique your manuscripts. We have signed art and rare books. We have the chance to win guest appearances in comics and get your name into upcoming books.

Stay tuned, as we’ll be adding new auctions all the time.

For a full listing of all current Worldbuilders auctions, CLICK HERE.

A Plea For Sanity

Lastly, I’d like to ask everyone to please read the instructions/directions carefully before they donate.

I know you’re excited. I’m excited too. We’re all going to raise some money, make the world a better place, and end up with big warm fuzzy feelings.

But the more emails my assistants get about missing addresses, wrong sizes, or forgotten personalization requests, the more likely they are to cry. You don’t want that, do you?

I’m sure you don’t. And I’m sure that you’ll read the instructions carefully.


Have questions? Most of them are probably answered over in the FAQ. (Even if your question isn’t answered, I talk about Batman a bit, so it won’t be a complete waste of your time.)

Lastly, just in case you missed it, here’s one more link to our Team Heifer donation page.

Let’s do this thing.


P.S. Below are this year’s lovely sponsors. They have donated, books, services, and cold hard cash to make Worldbuilders what it is today.

You should show them some love. They deserve it.



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