San Francisco, California | Comics

Sci-Fi, War

Edward Coffey

1 Campaigns | California, United States

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This campaign raised $2,315 for distribution. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

26 supporters | followers

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RISE explores the "What if...?" of sending a diverse squad of modern soldiers with all of their modern technology — in this case, with advanced technology not yet used in the field — and knowledge of history, back to the Civil War in our current social and political climate.

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
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  • The Team
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Mission Statement

My work tends to cross social/political issues while utilizing pop culture to bridge a gap or send a message. In RISE, for example, I explore the root cause of the Civil War and force the characters (and readers) in denial to face the truth of the Lost Cause of the Confederacy.

The Story

RISE – A disgraced Special Forces officer and his squad of misfit soldiers travel back in time to the Civil War, where they become entangled in the clandestine efforts to take down the Confederacy.

From writer/artist Edward Coffey, RISE explores the "What if...?" of sending a diverse squad of modern soldiers with all of their modern technology -- in this case, with advanced technology not yet used in the field -- back to the Civil War. What would soldiers with progressive mindsets do? What would cooler minds do to keep history intact? What would nefarious minds do if given a chance to change the course of history and bring about the Confederacy's victory? The consequences of doing the wrong or right thing could be devastating to history and the personal lives of these soldiers. With their families gone and the country's trajectory forever changed, there's a lot at risk, particularly for Lt. Col. Thomas Conway, who knows that a Confederate victory means the loss of his freedom, his family, and the potential to return to the current era in chains. For his senior enlisted advisor, Master Sgt. Ryan Wallace, the son of a West Virginia coal miner, plans to help the Confederacy win.

Throughout the series, the team encounters numerous historical figures, including Elizabeth Van Lew and Mary Jane Richards, Union spies in the heart of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia. Thomas does his best to keep his squad from getting involved, focusing his team on figuring out how to get back to their era fast, but his plans are dashed when Ryan and other team members go AWOL and join the Confederates. Leaving him no choice, Thomas must journey throughout the Civil War theater of operations and counter every step Ryan makes as he attempts to change the outcome of pivotal battles and influence military and civilian leaders with technology and his knowledge of history.

Sketch of Elizabeth Van Lew

Capt. Melody Reiser, one of the first female Ranger and Sapper school graduates (schools previously reserved for men alone), works to change the artificial intelligence application, AMARA (Autonomous Mission-enhancing, Adaptive, and Responsive Artificial Intelligence). As a result of her autonomous nature, the application takes a life of her own as she alters the goals of missions to create, as she sees it, a better mission outcome, even if that comes to the detriment of the assigned soldiers.

Through the course of the series, the squad of modern soldiers faces the realities of the Civil War, its root cause, and the consequences of a Confederate victory.

RISE has been an emotionally taxing story. From its origins as a screenplay to adapting it into a graphic novel, I’ve learned things about myself as I learn about these characters. Art speaks volumes from the subconscious, and in this work comes those sentiments I feel as the son of an immigrant, a combat veteran, a civil servant, and having worked as a strategic communicator.

With Rise #1 officially complete (and already working on issue 2), my goal is to get this comic into the hands of as many people as humanly possible. Please take a moment to read more about Rise #1 and check out some of the awesome rewards we have set aside for our backers.

Your contribution, at all levels, allows me to continue to work on this black & white graphic novel until the very last issue, printing it to show at various conventions to include Comic-Con in San Diego and WonderCon in Anaheim will give it greater exposure than selling on my own site or on Gumroad or one panel at a time on Webtoons. This story, as I feel, deserves to be in pulp. With your contribution, I can do that. If you're a digital comics reader, well, there's a digital version only for you.

While the goal is small, my hope is to greatly surpass the funding goal. This will allow me to upgrade some of the incentives already offered, but also greatly expands my marketing potential as I launch Redwood Comics and sell the comics on my site this fall.

For RISE on social media, check out RISE on Instagram and Twitter. Also, you can see my process work at @ejcoffey on Instagram and my portfolio at edwardjcoffey.com.

The first six-pages of RISE is available to preview here as well.

Stretch Goals

Surpassing the initial goal will allow me time to give away additional sketches, sketch covers with characters from RISE, variants added to regular versions, as well as art on the cover of the screenplay. Sketch covers are currently limited to 50 for contributions of $200+, but moving past 100% funding will allow me to order more sketch covers while also doing an original sketch. Also, sketches from my personal sketchbook to include character development and other characters from mainstream comics such as Batman, Wolverine, Joker, and Sandman.

Risks and challenges

The first issue is complete, as well as the 10-page publisher's sample, but there's more work with compiling Kindle-friendly digital editions and securing print-ready proofs, original sketches/drawings, and deliverables. The current shipping environment is also uncertain. With the pandemic, we find ourselves with disrupted supply chains that could potentially affect shipping times. I've factored this time into the fundraiser and will ensure a vendor can deliver the product within a reasonable timeframe.


Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Artist Alley Booth

Costs $500

A booth at conventions to see physical copies

Printing and Shipping

Costs $1,800

All printing and shipping materials, and handling for Rise #1

About This Team

Edward Coffey is the sole creator of RISE as the writer and artist of the graphic novel.

Edward grew up to a single mother from the Philippines in the San Francisco Bay Area. He always wanted to be a comic book artist having created his own characters that formed the team The Silver Slicers with its leader Captain Asia. After high school, Edward attended film school at the Academy of Art University. He graduated in 2005 and enlisted in the Army as a means to escape poverty. Edward served for 8 1/2 years as a broadcast journalist and strategic communicator. He was stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas; Baghdad, Iraq; and eventually in Washington, DC. 

A storyteller at heart, Edward attained his master's degree in Writing for Film, Television and Digital Media and focuses on telling original stories with an empathetic approach to character development. He continues to work as a jack-of-all-trades content creator and strategic communicator.

Current Team