ZiMo Project 2023: Call for an Indigenous Writer

ZiMo Project 2023: Call for an Indigenous Writer

18 months ago (or 100 years, time is all weird thanks to COVID), I released a book on Kickstarter for Zine Quest 3, Mysteries of the Mists. Zine Quest is a loose collection of TTRPG projects on Kickstarter, typically in a lightweight zine format (under 20 pages, staple-bound). Last year, with all the talk from Kickstarter about crypto and blockchain, some in the TTRPG industry started their own, KS-less initiative called Zine Month (or ZiMo).

I didn’t make anything for ZiMo last year but this year I’m trying something different. I’ll be publishing a new short adventure for We Deal in Lead, my weird west TTRPG inspired by Stephen King’s The Dark Tower novel series.

We Deal in Lead

We Deal in Lead is a multiversal system and setting; through mysterious slip doors, the gunslingers can travel between worlds, times, and universes. Players take the role of Gunslingers, mythic champions holding off the forces of chaos with lead and grit. The default region is The Drifted World, where time and space grow thin. There are bleached deserts, fetid swamps, overgrown and abandoned cities, and jagged mountains.

Here’s the Itch page, with more background and images to set the scene:


Core rules, setting, and SRD are available here:


The We Deal in Lead system is based on Cairn and Into the Odd.

Call for an Indigenous Writer

I’m looking for writers from an indigenous background to write a short (10-12 page, 4000-5000 word) adventure for We Deal in Lead, focusing on an Order of indigenous gunslingers.

The Western genre has a history of racist tropes, particularly toward indigenous people in North America. I want this adventure to feature indigenous voices and perspectives, to counter the typical narrative.

The Adventure

The brief is pretty open: an adventure from an indigenous perspective in the setting of We Deal in Lead, intended for a group of indigenous gunslingers. This could be a world where settlers and colonisation never happened (like Coyote & Crow) or a world similar to ours where indigenous people are oppressed and marginalised.

  • The adventure should be written using the We Deal in Lead system
  • The location can be in The Drifted World or in another adjacent world
  • I’m looking for you to bring an indigenous perspective and voice to the weird west genre, to subvert old racist tropes and craft something cool for We Deal in Lead

Details to Note

  • Base writing rate is $0.15 USD/word
  • Payment is not dependent on crowdfunding; the writer gets paid regardless
  • Open to indigenous writers from around the world, not just North America
  • Zine Month (and Zine Quest) happens in February 2023
  • The deadline for the completed adventure is 30 April 2023 (life happens, but this is the target)
  • Funding goals will be for art, cover, and print costs; any additional funding is split between the writer and editor/layout designer/publisher (me)

If you’re an indigenous writer and interested in the project, please send me a 250-500 word pitch for the adventure along with samples of your writing and a brief bio by 13 Dec 2022:

[email protected]

Header art by Perplexing Ruins

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