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Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#1
Hello. I'm new here and am getting ready to submit my first story. I also have a patreon account, and I'm wondering just how to tactfully juggle that while not undermining my time and work as an author. My work is short stories and novellas. I was thinking of this:

* I'll start, as a newbie, posting a few entire short stories. Each is about 3k words.

* After a few of those, I'll I will then start posting only the first part of a short story on RR, kind of like the first act, and if the reader wants to see the rest they can do so by being a tier one on Patreon. One per month. Tier 1 = $2/mo

* My novellas will be available one chapter per month to tier two patrons. Tier 2 = $3/mo

Questions:
1. My newbie stories will probably be 2 or 3 in a month, but after that is one per month too slow?
2. Is it cheesy and a big nope to do the partial post and you have to pay to read the rest of the story? 
3. Should the novellas be also available on RR or is it okay to have them as an extra temptation to be a patron?

Thanks!!

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#2
Gotta be a bit harsh here.

Stop thinking about a Patreon before you have anyone willing to even read your stories for free. Build an audience first, then consider monetizing that audience. Right now it sounds like you're putting the cart before the horses. If you go into it with a monetization model trying to sell things before even getting people in the door, you're gonna scare them off and they'll refuse to even engage with the free content you provide. Heck, they will actively downvote it and call you out for being greedy.

In summary, get a readership first. Then consider Patreon. Getting to the stage where it's worth making a Patreon is the hard part, not the Patreon itself.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#3
I've got to agree with Zogarth. It's going to be incredibly hard just to find *free* readers for short stories and novellas on RR (or most other web fiction sites). The model here definitely lends itself better to long-form serials with regular updates.

And keep in mind that only a tiny percentage of free readers are ever going to be willing to pay for the story--and those readers will want to pay for continuing the story they liked. Not for completely different stories.

A short story author might very well be able to launch a successful Patreon, but it's going to take a lot of time and effort to get to that point. You'd have to be in a position where you're attracting people by your name alone, rather than any one particular story.

You might consider the pros and cons of different publishing models.

If I had, say, a dozen short stories and novellas in the same genre (or, even better, set in the same world), I might launch them on Kindle Unlimited instead, paying for pre-made book covers (to look professional but keep the costs low). I'd launch them in relatively quick succession, to keep interest up, and as soon as I had four or five published, I'd start paying for Amazon ads to raise awareness, and I'd be tracking the cost-effectiveness of those ads to make sure they're worth it.

You have to match your publishing model and platforms to what you're actually producing. Unfortunately, I'm not aware of a tried and true platform for short stories, so you may have to play around a bit and try different things.

And just to answer your Question #2: I think you're technically allowed to post partial stories, but most readers aren't going to appreciate it.

EDIT: I just wanted to clarify, I mentioned Amazon Kindle Unlimited because 1. Amazon has a "Short Reads" section which I've heard is fairly popular, and 2. Kindle Unlimited allows people to read as much as they want from the KU library without any additional cost to them, so they're more likely to take chances on authors or stories they're not familiar with.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#4
Respectfully, you need to slow down a little. The first thing you need to accomplish before monetization is establishing a readership. It will likely take you longer than you’re thinking it will. An immediate jump into money-making strategies before you’ve established yourself as a reputable author will make you come across as greedy and will leave a bad taste in peoples’ mouths. It will turn them off and they’ll refuse to engage with your content on mere principle alone. In time, you can evaluate the monetization question. Until that happens, just focus on writing quality content. Anything more than that may be self-sabotaging. 

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#5
To answer your actual questions...
1. Yes. I'd have at minimum two shorts, so people don't forget you exist. Preferably one a week. With only one a month, you'd gain followers at the rate of one per every other blue moon.
2. Yes. I'd be annoyed as hell, and would give up caring before I gave up $2.
3. Why would I pay to read a novella that I don't know anything about? Most online publishers allow you to read the first chapter (or certain number of pages) before insisting you buy the book. Having a novella as an "extra temptation" is, frankly, not tempting at all.
.

Having said that, let me give you some stats on short stories...
My last short, I posted on June 24th. On that day, I got 19 views! Woo a whole 19! Then I spent three days without getting any views, and after that I've been averaging two views per three days. I have one review, and one comment.
Let's go back a few months. I posted a short on March 7th. On that day, I got 17 views. Over the next four days I got seven views, and at the end of the month I had a grand total of 27 views. Every month after that, I averaged 9 views. It's currently sitting at 45 views, with 3 ratings, and one comment. By the same person who commented on the story I posted on June 24th.
Now, we'll go to my first published short, published last December. It has 122 views, 2 ratings, 1 review, and a whopping 2 comments!
Short stories just aren't going to get you a whole bunch of followers. You'll slowly but surely keep getting views, but this site just isn't designed to be shorts-friendly.
Personally, I don't care about that. I like my little shorts, and I like designing cover art. If other people happen to enjoy my shorts as well, that's a bonus. But I don't post them for other people. And I certainly don't post them because I think I'll get anything.
If you want to make money off a hobby (which is what writing is), then you need to go into painting minis or making doll houses or something, because 99% of writers never see a dime for their efforts. Sorry.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#7

Sorcha Wrote: All very good points. Thank you for the input! I can see I'm getting ahead of myself. Seems you read how "everyone" has a website, patreon, etc. but nobody tells you in what order to do it.  Time to take a deep breath and slow down the plans.

To help you out when you eventually get to it, from what I've seen the most successful Patreon business models revolve around charging for early access to chapters and exclusive scenes (e.g. r-rated/ 18+ version of existing scenes). That way you get the best of both worlds because you won't irritate your readers by leaving all your stories as stubs.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#8

Zogarth Wrote: Gotta be a bit harsh here.

Stop thinking about a Patreon before you have anyone willing to even read your stories for free. Build an audience first, then consider monetizing that audience. Right now it sounds like you're putting the cart before the horses. If you go into it with a monetization model trying to sell things before even getting people in the door, you're gonna scare them off and they'll refuse to even engage with the free content you provide. Heck, they will actively downvote it and call you out for being greedy.

In summary, get a readership first. Then consider Patreon. Getting to the stage where it's worth making a Patreon is the hard part, not the Patreon itself.



I am going to throw a counter argument. Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free. Milanote is 9 dollars a month, Campfire requires money, Spotify requires money, World Anvil requires a lot of money. As someone who is on disability, and disability doesn't pay someone to survive off of, let alone thrive.

We just don't have the money or resources to make one book for free. I think it's kind of unfair situation to put people into expecting them not to ask for some sort of monetary value and I think audience need to understand this.

After I make rent, I have 94 dollars left for the entire month, and even cutting back on the subscriptions I don't need. All of my subscriptions cost me 25 dollars at least. That's a good chunk of my disability. How do people expect me to eat? Survive? Make bills? And write. They don't understand how expensive writing is. 

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#9

JeneClyde Wrote:
Zogarth Wrote: Gotta be a bit harsh here.

Stop thinking about a Patreon before you have anyone willing to even read your stories for free. Build an audience first, then consider monetizing that audience. Right now it sounds like you're putting the cart before the horses. If you go into it with a monetization model trying to sell things before even getting people in the door, you're gonna scare them off and they'll refuse to even engage with the free content you provide. Heck, they will actively downvote it and call you out for being greedy.

In summary, get a readership first. Then consider Patreon. Getting to the stage where it's worth making a Patreon is the hard part, not the Patreon itself.



I am going to throw a counter argument. Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free. Milanote is 9 dollars a month, Campfire requires money, Spotify requires money, World Anvil requires a lot of money. As someone who is on disability, and disability doesn't pay someone to survive off of, let alone thrive.

We just don't have the money or resources to make one book for free. I think it's kind of unfair situation to put people into expecting them not to ask for some sort of monetary value and I think audience need to understand this.

After I make rent, I have 94 dollars left for the entire month, and even cutting back on the subscriptions I don't need. All of my subscriptions cost me 25 dollars at least. That's a good chunk of my disability. How do people expect me to eat? Survive? Make bills? And write. They don't understand how expensive writing is.

You need nothing more than Google Docs to write. I don't use any of the programs you just mentioned (besides Spotify, but I have had that for more than 7 years, and you can also get that for free). Writing a book is absolutely free monetarily and only requires time. Again, this may come off a bit harsh, but if you can't find time to write while on disability, how would you find time to write if you do "make it?".  Do I think writers deserve to get paid? Well yeah, of course, but I am also realistic. If you want success as a writer and turn it into a living you have to invest time. If you can't spare the time to prepare, then don't try to be a writer. It's a huge gamble no matter what. I am walking from the perspective of wanting to begin and work as a writer. If you just write as a hobby, you can't expect to earn anything. If your disability does allow you to spend some of your time working... seeing your situation, I wouldn't spend that time writing but actually doing something that earns money. As I said, banking on turning writing into a job is like going to Vegas and expecting to make rent that way.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#10

JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).

JeneClyde Wrote: How do people expect me to eat? Survive? Make bills? And write.

They don't. Humans are in general highly narcissistic, and don't think about other people's problems. If you think you deserve money for writing, then frankly writing isn't something you should be spending your time on. And if you're paying to be able to write, then by all means stop this instant and cancel all your subscriptions because eating is far more important. You shouldn't be paying to write. You don't have to, and if you have a low fixed income you 100% need to spend money on more important things.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#11

Mad Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).



I am only going to address one of these, since you both seem to have similar arguments. I actually don't use either Campfire or World Anvil. I only use Milanote because it works for me. Recognize that not every app is not necessary, just because you don't deem it necessary. People have different needs and Milanote is actually the first thing that I have used that actually helps me outline better than sheets do. Having a visual board is extremely useful to skim information. So I deemed it necessary. Sure Youtube is free, but making individual playlist for certain scenes, discovering music, and being able to organize music is something Youtube doesn't provide. I also use Inkarnate, which is a map maker. Which also requires money, I could use the free version, but the free version is limited on what you can and cannot do. Those three, Milanote, Spotify, and Inkaranate are my resources, as a writer, they are tools. And are valid tools. And should be accepted as valid tools.

It's only this industry that people think that writers shouldn't ask for money until they built an audience. But any other entertainment job, imagine if we told a commission artist that they need to give out free commissions to build an audience before they made any returns off of it. I think that standard needs to change. We shouldn't be expecting writers to do the same.

It also sounds like travel expenses are not being put into place, and I am not talking outside of state or around the world, I am talking locally in your hometown. The price of gas for research, I have went to prisons, and I have went and met up with people to interview them at different locations in my hometown. That also cost money. You're right some writing is free. You can totally sit down and look things up online, which I do. But a lot of my research is supplemented with experience as well. 

And even then, that's not entirely free either. You have to pay money for the Internet at least in the U.S. Writing is not free. Minimally you'll be paying for the internet and electricity. Any program you want to use or tool you want to use for accessibility or world building reasons, is not free. And you will have to pay for them. And if you want to go the extra mile, interviewing people, actually getting a hands on experience, requires money as well. The idea that writing is free and requires no work on part of the writer is not entirely true. 

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#12

JeneClyde Wrote:
Mad Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).



I am only going to address one of these, since you both seem to have similar arguments. I actually don't use either Campfire or World Anvil. I only use Milanote because it works for me. Recognize that not every app is not necessary, just because you don't deem it necessary. People have different needs and Milanote is actually the first thing that I have used that actually helps me outline better than sheets do. Having a visual board is extremely useful to skim information. So I deemed it necessary. Sure Youtube is free, but making individual playlist for certain scenes, discovering music, and being able to organize music is something Youtube doesn't provide. I also use Inkarnate, which is a map maker. Which also requires money, I could use the free version, but the free version is limited on what you can and cannot do. Those three, Milanote, Spotify, and Inkaranate are my resources, as a writer, they are tools. And are valid tools. And should be accepted as valid tools.

It's only this industry that people think that writers shouldn't ask for money until they built an audience. But any other entertainment job, imagine if we told a commission artist that they need to give out free commissions to build an audience before they made any returns off of it. I think that standard needs to change. We shouldn't be expecting writers to do the same.

It also sounds like travel expenses are not being put into place, and I am not talking outside of state or around the world, I am talking locally in your hometown. The price of gas for research, I have went to prisons, and I have went and met up with people to interview them at different locations in my hometown. That also cost money. You're right some writing is free. You can totally sit down and look things up online, which I do. But a lot of my research is supplemented with experience as well. 

And even then, that's not entirely free either. You have to pay money for the Internet at least in the U.S. Writing is not free. Minimally you'll be paying for the internet and electricity. Any program you want to use or tool you want to use for accessibility or world building reasons, is not free. And you will have to pay for them. And if you want to go the extra mile, interviewing people, actually getting a hands on experience, requires money as well. The idea that writing is free and requires no work on part of the writer is not entirely true.

And you can make money, just write the book and put it on Amazon. Do that and you will be paid if enough people buy it. Don't you think other artists have to make their art first before monetizing it? With your mindset, you seem far more suited to a more regular publishing kind of deal. So go for that. This thread is talking about serialized fiction.

If you need money, approach a publisher and have them pay for things. That's the traditional way... though to be fair, even they expect a working manuscript first. I guess what I am trying to say is, that if you can't afford to self-fund writing a book you shouldn't be writing a book. The world doesn't owe you the possibility of writing a book. If you can't write a book within your budget, then don't. 

Honestly, what do you expect people to pay you for before you have a working project? of course, authors should be able to earn money from writing, I am enjoying quite a nice living from it myself currently, but being paid for your work doesn't mean that someone else should pay for you to write it. To get to that stage you have to first prove you're worth paying.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#13

Zogarth Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote:
Mad Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).



I am only going to address one of these, since you both seem to have similar arguments. I actually don't use either Campfire or World Anvil. I only use Milanote because it works for me. Recognize that not every app is not necessary, just because you don't deem it necessary. People have different needs and Milanote is actually the first thing that I have used that actually helps me outline better than sheets do. Having a visual board is extremely useful to skim information. So I deemed it necessary. Sure Youtube is free, but making individual playlist for certain scenes, discovering music, and being able to organize music is something Youtube doesn't provide. I also use Inkarnate, which is a map maker. Which also requires money, I could use the free version, but the free version is limited on what you can and cannot do. Those three, Milanote, Spotify, and Inkaranate are my resources, as a writer, they are tools. And are valid tools. And should be accepted as valid tools.

It's only this industry that people think that writers shouldn't ask for money until they built an audience. But any other entertainment job, imagine if we told a commission artist that they need to give out free commissions to build an audience before they made any returns off of it. I think that standard needs to change. We shouldn't be expecting writers to do the same.

It also sounds like travel expenses are not being put into place, and I am not talking outside of state or around the world, I am talking locally in your hometown. The price of gas for research, I have went to prisons, and I have went and met up with people to interview them at different locations in my hometown. That also cost money. You're right some writing is free. You can totally sit down and look things up online, which I do. But a lot of my research is supplemented with experience as well. 

And even then, that's not entirely free either. You have to pay money for the Internet at least in the U.S. Writing is not free. Minimally you'll be paying for the internet and electricity. Any program you want to use or tool you want to use for accessibility or world building reasons, is not free. And you will have to pay for them. And if you want to go the extra mile, interviewing people, actually getting a hands on experience, requires money as well. The idea that writing is free and requires no work on part of the writer is not entirely true.

And you can make money, just write the book and put it on Amazon. Do that and you will be paid if enough people buy it. Don't you think other artists have to make their art first before monetizing it? With your mindset, you seem far more suited to a more regular publishing kind of deal. So go for that. This thread is talking about serialized fiction.

If you need money, approach a publisher and have them pay for things. That's the traditional way... though to be fair, even they expect a working manuscript first. I guess what I am trying to say is, that if you can't afford to self-fund writing a book you shouldn't be writing a book. The world doesn't owe you the possibility of writing a book. If you can't write a book within your budget, then don't. 

Honestly, what do you expect people to pay you for before you have a working project? of course, authors should be able to earn money from writing, I am enjoying quite a nice living from it myself currently, but being paid for your work doesn't mean that someone else should pay for you to write it. To get to that stage you have to first prove you're worth paying.



First off, any commission artist will tell you that they would never sell their art work for free. I'd like you to go a commission artist right now and ask them to draw them a picture for free. When this is literally something many commissioned based artist have complained about before in the past. About people expecting free work from them. Like a writer, art takes time, you buy your own materials and your own tools. You seem to think that Patreon is Only for monetization, when it can be used a tip jar. The idea is the Patreon can be utilized as a way to pay towards the subscriptions that a writer utilizes, and pays for the expenses of travel that as writer has to do in order to travel to location to location even in their own hometown. Patreon is not, I am trying to make a living. My earlier comment about how do they expect me to pay my bills, is not with the Patreon money. Patreon supplements the subscriptions. So I have the money I have for the bills I need. Just like for a commission artist they use their patreon and commission money to pay for their tools, like paint, and paint brushes, material, etc.

There is an assumption that serialized fiction has never been paid for. When there is both modern and historical evidence to prove the contrary. There is a long standing history of serialized fiction, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes started off as serialized fiction in a magazine. And they were paid, maybe not a lot, but they were paid for their commissions. A more recent serialization was Worm from the Parahuman Series that ran completely on donations that eventually were used to pay for the book to become published. There is also an assumption that serialized work is incomplete. For example my manuscript is actually complete. But it was written for serialization. 

Everyone has a different method and just because the method doesn't work for you, doesn't mean you should discourage others from doing so. There shouldn't be so much stigma around writers asking for some form of compensation. This daydream of being a starving artist that rises from the ranks is a fallacy for most and it keeps people from pursuing their passions. 

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#14
I'd say don't pull off such a cheap tactic. People won't like it and they will be less inclined to pay for it. Instead, do something along the lines of making it a tip jar or posting other stuff there. And for your type of work, a "pay per month" will basically be arrogant and pretentious. But fear not, Patreon has an option for a "pay per creation" model that you can use. That way, they'll pay you to access each individual post or something along those lines. I haven't used it, but it does exist so look into that, yeah?

Writing requires quite a time investment so getting some spare bucks for doing it isn't really "asking for much" after you've done it for a good while (I say a month or two of consistent posting). On the other hand, yeah, it may be a bit early for that. You may be disappointed to see less than 1 Patron for months on end if you create it too early.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#17

Brendoleenee Wrote:
Zogarth Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote:
Mad Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).



I am only going to address one of these, since you both seem to have similar arguments. I actually don't use either Campfire or World Anvil. I only use Milanote because it works for me. Recognize that not every app is not necessary, just because you don't deem it necessary. People have different needs and Milanote is actually the first thing that I have used that actually helps me outline better than sheets do. Having a visual board is extremely useful to skim information. So I deemed it necessary. Sure Youtube is free, but making individual playlist for certain scenes, discovering music, and being able to organize music is something Youtube doesn't provide. I also use Inkarnate, which is a map maker. Which also requires money, I could use the free version, but the free version is limited on what you can and cannot do. Those three, Milanote, Spotify, and Inkaranate are my resources, as a writer, they are tools. And are valid tools. And should be accepted as valid tools.

It's only this industry that people think that writers shouldn't ask for money until they built an audience. But any other entertainment job, imagine if we told a commission artist that they need to give out free commissions to build an audience before they made any returns off of it. I think that standard needs to change. We shouldn't be expecting writers to do the same.

It also sounds like travel expenses are not being put into place, and I am not talking outside of state or around the world, I am talking locally in your hometown. The price of gas for research, I have went to prisons, and I have went and met up with people to interview them at different locations in my hometown. That also cost money. You're right some writing is free. You can totally sit down and look things up online, which I do. But a lot of my research is supplemented with experience as well. 

And even then, that's not entirely free either. You have to pay money for the Internet at least in the U.S. Writing is not free. Minimally you'll be paying for the internet and electricity. Any program you want to use or tool you want to use for accessibility or world building reasons, is not free. And you will have to pay for them. And if you want to go the extra mile, interviewing people, actually getting a hands on experience, requires money as well. The idea that writing is free and requires no work on part of the writer is not entirely true.

And you can make money, just write the book and put it on Amazon. Do that and you will be paid if enough people buy it. Don't you think other artists have to make their art first before monetizing it? With your mindset, you seem far more suited to a more regular publishing kind of deal. So go for that. This thread is talking about serialized fiction.

If you need money, approach a publisher and have them pay for things. That's the traditional way... though to be fair, even they expect a working manuscript first. I guess what I am trying to say is, that if you can't afford to self-fund writing a book you shouldn't be writing a book. The world doesn't owe you the possibility of writing a book. If you can't write a book within your budget, then don't. 

Honestly, what do you expect people to pay you for before you have a working project? of course, authors should be able to earn money from writing, I am enjoying quite a nice living from it myself currently, but being paid for your work doesn't mean that someone else should pay for you to write it. To get to that stage you have to first prove you're worth paying.

If I may add my two cents to this conversation, I think you would benefit from expanding your definition for what you could consider to be a working project. Looking at things from a business perspective, there are many instances where people are hired, contracted, paid, etcetera for work that is not essentially finished, because they are proposals. Scripts for television shows, movies, and other forms of media regularly accept what is essentially not a "working project", as it is hardly the rendition that will end up being utilized. A serial is a story released in parts meant to garnish attention to prospective readers as the story is being released. Basically an initial public offering. A writer should be well within their right to ask for compensation, whether it be pay or donations, for work that others see value in, especially early on in their serialization. If people are reading their material and continue to read it, they see value in it, and monetary compensation is more than reasonable, regardless if they have an established following or not. The option should be there regardless, and if the sole reason that someone is reading a work is because it is free, would you want someone like that in your following when you eventually do start asking for compensation? They saw more value in your story being free than the value of what the story was to begin with. If the story is worth paying for eventually, it was worth paying for to begin with.

Writing is something that people should be able to peruse however they want, and discouraging people from wanting to make money from writing comes off as gatekeeping. What works for you may not necessarily work for others, and there is little to be gained by kicking down all the other potential ladders of success that you did not use. How many prospective writers have we lost because it wasn't affordable for them? What stories could have been told, but haven't because people weren't as fortunate or lucky as you? There are plenty of people who write as a hobby who would love to write for a living, because it is their passion, and they would love to spend most of their time following it. Its hard enough to make it as a writer, it doesn't help when the writers who are successful discourage others from trying to find their own path to success.

I am saying you should still be realistic. Can people be paid upfront? Yes, but to do that you need to have some kind of proof you can do the work first. If you're an artist taking commissions you need a portfolio to show off your work, if you're a scriptwriter you need proven experience in cinematography or at least an education and references in the subject. For writing, you need to show you are capable of doing what you promised to do. The way to do that is to already have something to show off. You can't just come in with nothing and pitch an idea and expect funding. You need to show you can stick to a schedule and provide content people enjoy.

Let me be clear, I am not discouraging people from becoming a writer... I am telling them to not walk into it with unrealistic expectations. Thinking about how to make money from it before you even know if you're capable of being a writer would be the same as trying to figure out how to sell your house before you even own one. It's too damn early in the progress and will only distract you. This is why I am saying to first prove you are worth paying and then begin trying to earn money. 


If you can't afford to at least self-fund the initial process of proving yourself... then yes, I would gatekeep, because I think it would be an incredible disservice to tell people they can expect any financial help with this process. Who will pay you when you have nothing to show for yourself yet? Why would they?

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#18

Zogarth Wrote:
Brendoleenee Wrote:
Zogarth Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote:
Mad Wrote:
JeneClyde Wrote: Being a writer is extremely expensive and some people are low income. There are very rarely any free resources out there for writers that are actually free.

You must live in a different universe than I do, because (granted, other than buying a computer and paying for internet every month so I can google things) I have never paid a single red cent for anything I write on/with. Hell, you can even write things here if you can't find anything else free.

Although I might be able to help you out! 1. Campfire and World Anvil are (basically) the same thing, so you can ditch one of those and save money (or get rid of both and find a free word processor, there are dozens of them out there but Google Docs is the best). 2. Everything in Milanote can be done with a basic spreadsheet, it just won't be as pretty, and Google Sheets is free. 3. Spotify is a music app, so I don't know why you're saying it's a resource for writers, but allow me to introduce you to this website known as "youtube", where you can listen to music for free (excepting a 5 second ad every three songs or so).



I am only going to address one of these, since you both seem to have similar arguments. I actually don't use either Campfire or World Anvil. I only use Milanote because it works for me. Recognize that not every app is not necessary, just because you don't deem it necessary. People have different needs and Milanote is actually the first thing that I have used that actually helps me outline better than sheets do. Having a visual board is extremely useful to skim information. So I deemed it necessary. Sure Youtube is free, but making individual playlist for certain scenes, discovering music, and being able to organize music is something Youtube doesn't provide. I also use Inkarnate, which is a map maker. Which also requires money, I could use the free version, but the free version is limited on what you can and cannot do. Those three, Milanote, Spotify, and Inkaranate are my resources, as a writer, they are tools. And are valid tools. And should be accepted as valid tools.

It's only this industry that people think that writers shouldn't ask for money until they built an audience. But any other entertainment job, imagine if we told a commission artist that they need to give out free commissions to build an audience before they made any returns off of it. I think that standard needs to change. We shouldn't be expecting writers to do the same.

It also sounds like travel expenses are not being put into place, and I am not talking outside of state or around the world, I am talking locally in your hometown. The price of gas for research, I have went to prisons, and I have went and met up with people to interview them at different locations in my hometown. That also cost money. You're right some writing is free. You can totally sit down and look things up online, which I do. But a lot of my research is supplemented with experience as well. 

And even then, that's not entirely free either. You have to pay money for the Internet at least in the U.S. Writing is not free. Minimally you'll be paying for the internet and electricity. Any program you want to use or tool you want to use for accessibility or world building reasons, is not free. And you will have to pay for them. And if you want to go the extra mile, interviewing people, actually getting a hands on experience, requires money as well. The idea that writing is free and requires no work on part of the writer is not entirely true.

And you can make money, just write the book and put it on Amazon. Do that and you will be paid if enough people buy it. Don't you think other artists have to make their art first before monetizing it? With your mindset, you seem far more suited to a more regular publishing kind of deal. So go for that. This thread is talking about serialized fiction.

If you need money, approach a publisher and have them pay for things. That's the traditional way... though to be fair, even they expect a working manuscript first. I guess what I am trying to say is, that if you can't afford to self-fund writing a book you shouldn't be writing a book. The world doesn't owe you the possibility of writing a book. If you can't write a book within your budget, then don't. 

Honestly, what do you expect people to pay you for before you have a working project? of course, authors should be able to earn money from writing, I am enjoying quite a nice living from it myself currently, but being paid for your work doesn't mean that someone else should pay for you to write it. To get to that stage you have to first prove you're worth paying.

If I may add my two cents to this conversation, I think you would benefit from expanding your definition for what you could consider to be a working project. Looking at things from a business perspective, there are many instances where people are hired, contracted, paid, etcetera for work that is not essentially finished, because they are proposals. Scripts for television shows, movies, and other forms of media regularly accept what is essentially not a "working project", as it is hardly the rendition that will end up being utilized. A serial is a story released in parts meant to garnish attention to prospective readers as the story is being released. Basically an initial public offering. A writer should be well within their right to ask for compensation, whether it be pay or donations, for work that others see value in, especially early on in their serialization. If people are reading their material and continue to read it, they see value in it, and monetary compensation is more than reasonable, regardless if they have an established following or not. The option should be there regardless, and if the sole reason that someone is reading a work is because it is free, would you want someone like that in your following when you eventually do start asking for compensation? They saw more value in your story being free than the value of what the story was to begin with. If the story is worth paying for eventually, it was worth paying for to begin with.

Writing is something that people should be able to peruse however they want, and discouraging people from wanting to make money from writing comes off as gatekeeping. What works for you may not necessarily work for others, and there is little to be gained by kicking down all the other potential ladders of success that you did not use. How many prospective writers have we lost because it wasn't affordable for them? What stories could have been told, but haven't because people weren't as fortunate or lucky as you? There are plenty of people who write as a hobby who would love to write for a living, because it is their passion, and they would love to spend most of their time following it. Its hard enough to make it as a writer, it doesn't help when the writers who are successful discourage others from trying to find their own path to success.

I am saying you should still be realistic. Can people be paid upfront? Yes, but to do that you need to have some kind of proof you can do the work first. If you're an artist taking commissions you need a portfolio to show off your work, if you're a scriptwriter you need proven experience in cinematography or at least an education and references in the subject. For writing, you need to show you are capable of doing what you promised to do. The way to do that is to already have something to show off. You can't just come in with nothing and pitch an idea and expect funding. You need to show you can stick to a schedule and provide content people enjoy.

Let me be clear, I am not discouraging people from becoming a writer... I am telling them to not walk into it with unrealistic expectations. Thinking about how to make money from it before you even know if you're capable of being a writer would be the same as trying to figure out how to sell your house before you even own one. It's too damn early in the progress and will only distract you. This is why I am saying to first prove you are worth paying and then begin trying to earn money. 


If you can't afford to at least self-fund the initial process of proving yourself... then yes, I would gatekeep, because I think it would be an incredible disservice to tell people they can expect any financial help with this process. Who will pay you when you have nothing to show for yourself yet? Why would they?



Um yes hello I am an aformentioned commission freelance artist and I would never offer any of my art for free. My portfolio was built on PAID commissions. You seem like the type of person who wants everyone to go through what you went through in order to find success because you find any other way will invalidate how you gained what you might have or might gain. In a sense you think because this is what you went through it MUST be the only way. Don't worry there are many writers and artists that share this exact mindset. But that is just not the case, food trucks, and chefs never got where they were with chains by offering food for free. Stubbs BBQ did not start out by offering his BBQ for free or his food for free at his resturuant. What you are suggesting isn't realistic at all it's not how you build a brand and if you are insecure in your own product that you don't think it's worth paying that's on you but don't you dare discourage other creators from building a brand and trying to find compensation for the effort and value they put in their work. 

Why should I find value in something if the creator doesnt find value in it themselves? I am not sure where this idea came to fruition that writers and creators have to basically starve and struggle until they "make it" but I'd like for you to tell all the ghost writers, script writers, editors and song writers in the industry that they should have offered their services for free before they became successful. That's utter nonsense. 

Gatekeeping at it's finest also very gaslighty.

OP: 
As long as you have a good guideline to what your patreon offers outside of the content you produce, I think early access to chapters is a great way to start for getting some paid content to help with your creative process. I also implore you not to let the several who have responded to discourage you from this path to do so. Their way of thinking is archaic and the reason why so many people who could be successful and build a brand never burst through the cieling. 

Zorgath Wrote: Gotta be a bit harsh here.

Stop thinking about a Patreon before you have anyone willing to even read your stories for free. Build an audience first, then consider monetizing that audience. Right now it sounds like you're putting the cart before the horses. If you go into it with a monetization model trying to sell things before even getting people in the door, you're gonna scare them off and they'll refuse to even engage with the free content you provide. Heck, they will actively downvote it and call you out for being greedy.

In summary, get a readership first. Then consider Patreon. Getting to the stage where it's worth making a Patreon is the hard part, not the Patreon itself.


EDIT: Also wanted to bring this up, that downvoting someone because they are asking for tips or offering the ability to share support is harrassent and also still part of the systemic problem with everyone thinking artists and creators in general need to struggle before receiving compensation. And I blame media and these "Success stories" for this type of thinking.

There shouldn't be any problem and people should find no problem with creators finding value in their product.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#19
I think this argument can be boiled down to why we're writing.
If someone says "I write, and being paid for it would be nice" I have no issue with this. If someone says "I write, and I deserve to be paid for it" that is what I have issue with. People who write for themselves (like an artist who draws a beautiful picture of a deer at sunset or whatever for the sole reason that they want to) aren't doing it because they expect people to pay them. People who write for others (like an artist who has been commissioned to draw a beautiful picture of a deer at sunset) do expect to be paid.
The problem is, no one here has been commissioned to write. No one has had someone come up to them and asked them to write a certain story. (Unless they have, because story commissioning is a thing.) But to write something here and then say you deserve to be paid is like an artist who draws a picture of a deer at sunset, puts it on instagram, and demands someone buy it. Sure, someone might end up paying for it, but because they like the picture, not because the artist put a 200 word sob story in the description saying that colored pencils are expensive.
So to me, saying "writing is expensive and therefore I should be able to expect someone to pay me" is completely the wrong way of looking at it. If you want money because you spend money, then stop spending money. Writing does not have to be expensive. Write for yourself, because you enjoy it, or look for someone who wants a story written about a deer at sunset.

Re: What to offer here vs patreon?

#20

Mad Wrote: I think this argument can be boiled down to why we're writing.
If someone says "I write, and being paid for it would be nice" I have no issue with this. If someone says "I write, and I deserve to be paid for it" that is what I have issue with. People who write for themselves (like an artist who draws a beautiful picture of a deer at sunset or whatever for the sole reason that they want to) aren't doing it because they expect people to pay them. People who write for others (like an artist who has been commissioned to draw a beautiful picture of a deer at sunset) do expect to be paid.
The problem is, no one here has been commissioned to write. No one has had someone come up to them and asked them to write a certain story. (Unless they have, because story commissioning is a thing.) But to write something here and then say you deserve to be paid is like an artist who draws a picture of a deer at sunset, puts it on instagram, and demands someone buy it. Sure, someone might end up paying for it, but because they like the picture, not because the artist put a 200 word sob story in the description saying that colored pencils are expensive.
So to me, saying "writing is expensive and therefore I should be able to expect someone to pay me" is completely the wrong way of looking at it. If you want money because you spend money, then stop spending money. Writing does not have to be expensive. Write for yourself, because you enjoy it, or look for someone who wants a story written about a deer at sunset.



I'm sorry, if I draw a picture of a deer in sunset or whatever and post it on Instagram and I say "hey this artwork is for sale if you want to buy it" that isn't me demanding that someone buys it. That is giving someone the option to buy it if they want it, giving someone an option. OPTION.

Much like the OP here is opening an option to support his work. 

What is with artists these days undervaluing their work and thinking they shouldn't feel like they should value their own work? 

If he wants to use subscriptions or tools or whatever he wants to for his creative process, his ART (not your's) the best it can be why are we trying gaslight the OP into feeling guilty for giving people the OPTION to support him! He isn't going to stop doing his subscriptions or paying for his software, he is just giving his viewers or fans the OPTION to help ease the financial burden. Much like an artist like myself would very much like to use quality pencils so that my art is of a quality that I stand for, would give someone the option to support my passion. AGAIN OPTION.

Smh gaslighting at it's finest. Also please don't call someone's reasoning, sob stories, it comes off pertencious and rude. 
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