A comment that really hurt.Posted: October 13, 2016
I’ve been avoiding the blog. Even though there are 4,000 of you reading. And last night, driving home from my Lyft shift, I finally realized why: because of a comment I got here recently. To paraphrase, it said: “I’ve really valued your posts in the past, but now, you’re talking too much about your Patreon. It’s getting tiresome. If you keep doing this, I’m just going to look elsewhere for content. Just thought I’d be honest.”
It hurt a lot, so I deleted it quickly before it could hurt more, but hey, it did its damage. So thanks, commenter, you knew exactly how to get to me—by basically saying that you felt entitled to free work from me at a time when I was staying home eating nothing but grits to get by. Cool. Thanks.
Those of you who follow me on Facebook know the whole story of my last few months, but for those of you who don’t, it’s here. The good news is, I’m in a better situation now specifically because I made changes in the way I valued my work, and because my community responded. And I’m not going to apologize for that. Or for posting about my Patreon. It is literally my job.
For years, I could afford to write essays for free on this blog, because my money was coming from somewhere else. In the future, when my basic needs are met through Patreon, commissions, and other sources, and I can afford to occasionally write for free, I definitely want to! On this blog! About all kinds of things! But right now, I can’t. Right now, I’m working primarily for the people who are paying me—my patrons on Patreon—and they’re getting my thoughts and essays and stories and letters and pictures and travelogues and videos and audiobooks and they’re all REALLY REALLY GOOD. As good as anything you’ve ever read here.
So if you can afford to pledge just $1 a month for all that content? Go here! If you can’t, I understand!, and I’ll write here whenever I can afford to. But if you want to write a comment shaming me for trying to make a living from my work, don’t. I’ll delete it. And this time, I won’t feel bad about it.