Sunday, December 30, 2018

Patreon Problems

I’ve been on Patreon for a couple years now, and the more time I spend here, the more I think it’s just not a great format for writing, though I think it works great for visual art. (If anyone has ideas on how to make it work better for writing, that would be very helpful, and much appreciated!)

Things like when I tried to share my novel were just…not convenient. (What I really love, for that kind of parceling out of a longer work over an extended time, are fanfic sites. AO3 is just a lovely format, and I wish there was something like that I could use the way I try to use Patreon.)

But the real, main problem I have with Patreon is very much an issue with me, and not the site: the format of the fundraising just doesn’t make sense to me, as someone who has large-scale, long-term goals, rather than several small milestones to reach.

If my goal is to save x amount of money to purchase ISBNs, how do I convert that into a monthly goal? I can’t say “I need to make x amount of money per month,” because actually what I need is to make x amount of money for y months, or maybe y amount of money for z months.

And meanwhile I feel obligated to fill my page with smaller goals. If I make x amount of money per month, I can do this, and if I make y amount of money per month I can do this, and if I make z amount of money per month, I can do the thing I actually want to do. So in order to fit in with the format of Patreon, I’m setting all these goals I don’t have the time, energy, or desire to meet.  And I’m spending money on those things that I would rather be devoting to my actual, long-term goal.

Plus, I really hate deciding, okay, this one thing I wrote is worth this amount of money, this thing is worth more; only these people can see these things, and only these people can see these things and those other things—it isn't enough just to support me, you have to support me THIS MUCH every month to see this thing, this thing that I wrote because I wanted people to read it, not because I’m desperate to increase my monthly income by $1.

So. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with Patreon moving forward. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Year in Review/Coming Up

It’s been a busy year. Not, I suppose, from the perspective of my readers, but in distinctly un-artistic ways, it’s been a lot.

It’s just past eleven, and I’m writing, tonight, in between baking Christmas cookies. I’ve been trying lately to maintain a better sleep schedule, but some rebellious part of my brain insists that baking is a late-night activity.

2018 has been my first full year working a fulltime job. It’s also the year I bought a house, and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and OCD. I tried new meds (which WORK!). I got two guinea pigs, three hermit crabs, a fish, and a snail. I tried dating and decided it wasn’t for me. I wrote almost exclusively indulgent crap under a pen name, for no purpose but fun. I made boring, grown-up purchases, like crock pots and blenders, address labels and Christmas trees. My new house has a piano, and I finally bought a TV. I’ve been working through my complicated relationship with the church, and though I haven’t found the place where I belong yet, I have some good leads to check out when all the holiday chaos dies down. This week I got a puppy. (More on that later.)

It’s been a big year for life. It’s been a slow year for writing, especially as I try to work out a good schedule with all my new responsibilities.

I’m not going to make any promises, because the balancing act is still a major struggle. But here’s a bit about what’s been going on, and what my thoughts are for moving forward:

I have one major goal for 2019, which is to start my own small press, so that I own my own ISBNs, and am ACTUALLY self-publishing, instead of technically being published by Createspace or Lulu.

Over the last twelve months, I’ve continued to work slowly on my next poetry collection, which will be called Small Scars. I’ve also begun work on a short story collection. This is going to be called The Shoemaker Prince, and will be made up of two longer stories and several much shorter ones, all fairy tales and fairy tale retellings. There may also be another chapbook in the works, similar to thin but about asexuality, tentatively titled Dear Somebody.

My goal is to get back to weekly fairy tale blogs; I have content outlined for the first three months of the year. For my church blog, I’ll be aiming for one post each month. I’m also considering monthly book reviews; in theory these will all be of Beauty and the Beast retellings for the next year.

One thing that remains really difficult for me is Patreon. I’m not getting much use out of it, primarily because I just don’t find it a useful format for my purposes.  There will be a post about that soon, explaining my struggles with it and asking for your feedback. For now I’m putting it on the backburner.

Despite the changes and challenges of the past year, and despite the fact that I genuinely enjoy my current job, my long-term goal is still to write and publish fulltime. As always, I appreciated your support as I work toward this goal.