All Cards on the Table

January 16, 2012

So, while this is titled “a self published author’s work” I’ve not actually published anything yet. The stories I’ve posted are rough drafts, so far, that I’m prepping for an anthology of short stories that I’m going to put on e-book markets. It’s important to me not only that I’m able to share my work with the world but also that it’s good quality, it’s well organized, and that people enjoy it. That’s why I share it here first, for free, and always will. I want to hear people talk about it, I want people to ask me about it, and I want to be part of your lives in small ways as a story teller. A modern day bard that doesn’t bring news of the world but news of the mind, of the heart.

Unfortunately, this comes with certain problems. I used to work in IT, as a help desk technician. Last year I lost my job and, over the course of the year, I’ve developed bad fibromyalgia related pain in my joints. I can’t work the jobs I used to be able to and I’m hovering just under poverty now while on unemployment. So writing, as well as a business venture I’m working on, are my lifelines. The work, my involvement with people who enjoy my work, are important but what’s also important is eating and having a house over my head. Which leads me to a conundrum – how to support myself?

Part of this is a discussion I’ve followed on Techdirt for a long time. It’s the Reason To Buy + Connect With Fans formula. I’m hoping that, initially, the reason to buy will be making sure I can keep writing. The connect with fans part? That’s this, that’s my comments, and that’s the fact that I’ll answer any of your questions, any one out there, that asks. I’ll go into long, rambling conversations with you if you want. I am an open book and, for the most part, have the time to be so for right now.

Between now and then, though, I need to build momentum. I need to be able to support myself. So, as those who read my blog, those who are interested in me continuing my work, how do you feel about me monetizing my blog a bit? Asking for donations or placing ads somewhere on the page? How best do you think I can make a living out of my love?

Or do I not have what it takes?


4 Responses to “All Cards on the Table”

  1. Aly Hughes Says:

    So, I’ve been keeping up with your WordPress blog since Day One of it. I think it’s safe to say I enjoy your writing! I recall my first comment likening your sci-fi short story to an updated Philip K Dick piece. I would buy that. Especially in an anthology. You have potential, and with a lot of hard work I think you could eventually make a living off of your writing.

    For the meantime? People shouldn’t be turned off by a donation button on a blog. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with putting that up on here. In fact, I’m unemployed at the moment, and have been considering adding one to my page as well. Where would starving writers be without each other? 😉 In all seriousness though, I would suggest perhaps a PayPal button, something safe. I wouldn’t expect much to come in until you have a larger following, but it’s worth giving a try. You know, especially as writers struggling to make it, we do what we have to do to get by.

    Just keep at it. I believe in you.

    • Luarien Says:

      You did indeed compare it to Phillip K Dick, which I still get all kinds of warm glowy stuff inside from.

      I’ll probably port my Donation button over then (I already have one on my Tumblr main page, which was my primary blog until I started this one). I haven’t gotten any donations from anyone I didn’t know there, but there’s some kind of magic in WordPress for authors. I could only have a million followers there if I could make image memes, I think.

      Thanks for the support, it means more than you believe (well, maybe not since you’re an author, unemployed, etc. You know how scary it is and how praise and such can be almost narcotic).

      Also wish I knew more CSS so I could make the blog pages more attractive. C’est la vie.

  2. Mieux Says:

    I know you’ve already done it, but to add an opinion:

    Almost all of my favourite contemporary artists started off producing their creativity on a lark, and for various reasons, jumped into utilizing it to create income. I see no problem with this, in fact, I respect each and every one, and when it came time (for whatever reason) for them to monetize their sites, so be it. I’m happy to donate when and where I can. Though, sometimes my senile posterior needs a reminder. ^.^

    • Luarien Says:

      Thanks for commenting! Well, if you’re ever feeling generous, there’s a link on the side of the page labeled “Donate To The Writing Engine” and there’s a link in my Google+ profile to the same donation accumulator, so have at it!

      It’s scary to ask for money sometimes, so I’m still trying to get used to the idea of asking for it from a total stranger. From hundreds or thousands of total strangers. Constantly.

      Now I’m afraid again.

      At least I’ll have a serial available soon, I think, and not too long away a short story anthology. Then I’ll have an excuse to ask people for money.

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