My drug of choice is writing––writing, art, reading, inspiration, books, creativity, process, craft, blogging, grammar, linguistics, and did I mention writing?

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Down to the Wire

Our last of six Thursday "pledge drive" posts. 

Hope has appeared for our protagonist in the eleventh hour, but time is running out. Will we reach our goals by August 1st?

Welcome to our final pledge drive post. Thank you all for your patience. I'm not yet sure WE made it, but you made it to the end at least! We picked this six weeks because I'm too busy teaching to do a full writing schedule, and because my budget for the next "year" (think school year, not calendar year) needs to be solidified to cover food and rent (and I think I might be getting a cavity).

In just a few minutes, I'm going to walk out the door, teach my last day of summer school, stop to get something halfway decent to eat on the way home to celebrate, take a weekend off from this blog (after posting the first quarterfinal of our poll tomorrow [still a chance for nominations and seconds!]), and on Monday begin a schedule of full time writing.

What I will also do on Monday is figure out my budget for the coming year. Everything I made this summer goes into a savings account that I will use to draw things out as long as possible.  And every pet sitting gig or nanny hour I accrue will push out that final moment of truth when I'll have to hang up my pen, shift down to writing part time, and go get some kind of steady gig.

Of course the question on the table for all of you is not whether or not some two bit blogger has to get a job, but whether I am going to start hosting hosting ads here on Writing About Writing (and do a lot of begging of readers to whitelist my site from their ad blockers). It would help, and I now have the kind of readership that it would help more than a little.  But it's still not a move I want to make if I can help it.

Below is a screenshot from MY PATREON.

This is the best and easiest way to support me as an artist. Set up a payment for as little as a single dollar a month and forget about it.

I'm currently 72% to my third goal. My third goal is based on the Kickstarter I ran last year. That money is still ready to supplement my regular income and fund a few months of full time writing. The goal I'm trying to reach now will keep me from having to drive for Lyft or something once I run through those Kickstarter funds allotted for the novel and keep me writing instead.

72%--up from 65% last week

There is only 28% to go. Last week was an amazing show of support from several small donors. They really do add up. As much as I completely adore my big ticket patrons, I would really love to have a lot of smaller donors. You know it's too easy to imagine that folks who light their cigars with hundred dollar bills will just throw money they don't really need at Writing About Writing, but what's really happening is that real people who aren't rich by any means are reaching deep into their generosity and when life happens that's no longer money they can afford not to have.

I like the idea that they're not doing all the heavy lifting.

There are lots more goals than this one I'm 72% towards. One goal coming up in the next year or two has to do with my nannying day job. It is on a long, slow phase out because the kid in question is growing up. Projections for this coming school year are less than half of the hours of last year. And they'll probably go down again next year around this time. If I can't make up the income, I'm eventually going to have to find a clock to punch in order to not starve.

But Chris.... If this pledge drive is not to get you to the income to write full time, what is it for?

I'm so glad you asked.  I'm treating this goal as something of a bellwether. If I can make just this one, smaller goal, then I'll consider myself reasonably safe for what's coming in the next couple of years. (More patrons will trickle in.) Every dollar I make now will mean that much longer before I have to start hitting my Kickstarter money, and the longer it will last.

Besides it only costs $5 a month to get biweekly selfies.

I want YOU...to get lots more selfies like this one.

Future goals involve more stable living situations and even my retirement needs, but I can deal with them in the future. For now I just want to know that it might be plausible to get there.

Since this blog's inception, due to the breathtaking generosity of patrons and donations from readers like you, we have been able to:
  • Quit teaching night classes during the regular year and write instead
  • Bring you more content
  • Remove the annoying ads
  • Up the number of high quality posts each week. 
  • (Not to put too fine a point on it, but we've been able to keep bringing you content through what would otherwise have been some completely devastating life transitions that would have put most bloggers on hiatus.) 
  • Gone from five posts a week to six. 
  • And we've been able to take far fewer random days off. 

Here are some things I'd like to add if we continue to get more support:
  • Even more posts, and more high-quality posts (less jazz hands)
  • But also more (and better) jazz hands (on top of the "meaty" posts) in the way of potpourris, plot arc posts, and guest bloggers.
  • A seventh and even eight post each week (or more?)
  • A greater number of carefully (perhaps even professionally) edited and revised posts
  • More fiction!!
  • Always and ever free longer fiction (books)
  • An always, forever, ad free experience on Writing About Writing
  • If I can't reach the goal of this pledge drive in the next four days [especially if I don't even come "frustratingly close"], I may have to return to hosting ads on Writing About Writing and possibly considering other ways to monetize my work.  Ads will actually limit the rage of certain kinds of content I can post, and will probably involve no small amount of cleaning out old posts of the same. [Copyright stuff is a little less strident if you're noncommercial.] And if I really can't hit this goal, I have to think about day jobs–day jobs which would see me pulling back from writing.

That doesn't have to happen though.  For the mere cost of twelve dollars a year–just ONE DOLLAR a month–you can get in on backchannel conversations with other patrons, polls, and conversations about future projects including sometimes me trying to get your input about what you'd like to see. But perhaps, most importantly, you'll get that warm and fuzzy feeling that you are supporting an artist to continue making art and entertainment.

So if you like what I do and want to see me do more of it. Or if you don't want to see me have to do less of it. Or if you want to continue to see me do it without ads, please consider a small pledge. We wouldn't have gotten this far without our patrons, and we can't go any further without you.

Again here is that link: https://www.patreon.com/chrisbrecheen

And of course if committing to a monthly amount isn't feasible, you can always make a one-time donation through my Paypal (at the top left of the screen).

Thank you all so much. No matter what is feasible at this time or what you can spare. I couldn't have made it this far without all of you.

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