The Daily Report
Well, the end of last week and this past weekend were… interesting. I made some plans, got some perspective, and took a few steps. I have a fundraiser specifically for the purpose of getting myself and Jack to WorldCon, and its first day, it brought in enough for us to buy plane tickets (the most time-critical element of the expenses) as soon as the withdrawal clears. Every $150 thrown into the pot will net a new satirical piece along the lines of my popular Sad Puppies Review Books features. The first one, a SPRB treatment for Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, went up over the weekend. I’ll be doing the remainders about one a week.
I’m kicking around ideas for my next satire, but the Mike Mulligan review may wind up counting for this week, as we leave for WisCon the day after tomorrow. The con doesn’t actually start properly until Friday, although there are some kick-off events on Thursday. So why Wednesday? Well, last year, I screwed up the dates when I was buying plane tickets and only noticed the day before our flights that they were a day earlier than our hotel reservations. So we had a frantic scramble to get ready and to find accommodations… but when all was said and done, we found it was less stressful to do it that way then to travel and not have a full day to recover, rest, and decompress before we start socialing and doing things. Also, the further our travel is away from the actual weekend, the easier a time we have with the airports. It does add to the expense of the thing, but in years that we can all go, WisCon basically winds up being our big blow-out.
In some ways, it’s my usual impeccably terrible sense of timing that I’m gearing up to kick hindquarters and take names right before we have to leave, especially since the con tends to wipe me out, physically and emotionally. I’m also bad at calendars. When I started planning, I managed to simultaneously convince myself that the con was both further away in the future, and also further from the end of May. It only just now hit me that June 1st is the day after we get back, and not a week after that. Oops.
Oh, well. You know what? I have never felt as good going into the con as I do this year. My physical health is better than it’s been in my adult life. So full speed ahead and dang the torpedoes. We’re doing this. MU updates still resume June 1st, and the beginning of June is still when I kick all my plans into high gear.
One of the things I did last week was split my Patreon into two, one for “support Alexandra Erin the author” on a monthly basis and one for “support Tales of MU” on a per-update basis. The MU one is currently at $35, which amounts to something around a penny a word… not the best rate, but a good start. My secret inner benchmark for MU being worth it to keep writing has always been $50 a chapter, so that’s what I really hope to see as a baseline, but I completely understand it not being there before I’ve even started updating again. At this point there aren’t even links on the MU website that point to the new Patreon.
The personal Patreon attracted some new patrons but the number of patrons and monthly income more or less stayed the same, as older supporters who are only or mainly interested in TOMU took the opportunity to make that officially clear. I kind of expected that. the The fact is that if both campaigns gain or lose no one between now and the end of June, I still stand to make substantially more money from that month than I am this month, because the MU campaign is based on number of updates.
I plan on growing the MU Patreon by proving its value with quality and consistency of updates. Proving the value of the author one is going to be a little trickier. The most successful crowdfunding campaigns for authors are from ones who have the kind of large established following that is easier to build if you achieve success in traditional publishing. I am in the weird but not necessarily bad position of having done more recently to impress my fellow authors than my fellow readers.
So my immediate plan to “prove my brand” as an author is to, in the run up to the end of the month, re-publish one of my favorite short stories or similar works of mine a day, with a link to my author Patreon at the end.
This way I can show people what they’d be supporting, exactly, and what they’d be getting in return.
The State of the Me
Doing good. I think I mentioned I had a terrible insomnia episode going into Friday. I slept well over the weekend, though I paid for the missed sleep pretty dearly.
Plans For Today
Okay, if you were paying attention to the long and meandering daily report, you might have noticed I have a plan to re-publish eight short stories between now and the end of the month, and that two days from now I am leaving on a trip that ends the last day of this month. This means that my main task for today is going to be selecting those eight stories and getting them queued up as posts.