So that Patreon thing is up and running and I even have a few subscribers. So that’s a nice surprise. And thanks. It’s not much, of course, but it will pay the service fees that the bank charges me and/or buy a big bag of 김치 a month. So that’s nice.
But the emails that site sends me . . .
It feels like working for Amway or some shit. Invite your friends, get them to spread the word. Talk about it on the twitter. So much of the Internet is just a pyramid scheme cult.
Insofar as I need to justify participating in such a gross racket, it’s basically like this . . .
Last week some time, I got form rejection note for another novel. Now, keep in mind, these novels aren’t even getting rejected from big houses. They’re getting rejected from places that might pay me, tops, $500 for an entire novel. I’m not someone who commands an advance in the thousands, let alone the tens of thousands. As it is, I can’t even get into the hundreds. I doubt that I could not get paid $20 for a novel. And it’s been like that for a long time. I mean, I keep writing the fucking things so it’s obviously not about the money.
I’m just never going to sell another novel. That’s just not a thing that will ever happen. Not because these novels don’t exist. Some of them are even okay, I think. But no one will ever buy them. It’s just not going to happen. There’s nothing I can do about it.
And if it’s like that for my novels, it’s pretty grim for my fucking bulletins.
Thing with these fucking things . . . There is nowhere to sell them. There just isn’t even a market for them. I don’t even know where to send them to get rejected. I don’t even how to describe them. I don’t even know how they’ll turn out a lot of the time. They’re strange little assemblies. I just like making them. And I like reading them.
But I don’t even know where to post them. Like, they just aren’t right for here. They need their own space. And I can’t imagine putting them on FB or whatever. The first run on them appeared on ELLO (remember that?) and it was just a thing that felt natural there. I’m not going to bother with ELLO though. I’m just not. Tumblr? Maybe. But I just don’t like the idea of them being totally public or rebloggable or anything like that. Doesn’t sit right. I don’t like that context-collapse stuff at the best of times. These things kind of need to build their own context. That’s part of how they work. That’s part of what they do. They breed best in shadow and quarantine. I don’t want them wandering around in daylight.
I was thinking email newsletter. That seemed to fit them. I like the idea of them going to mailboxes. But setting all that up is some work and why even bother? Like, I believe in serving the work but that can start to feel like doing a favor. Like, at some point, me doing shit for free is me doing a favor. Like why even bother setting up another thing?
I’m going to write these things whether or not I put them anywhere. To put them somewhere? I’m sorry but I just need to see some money. At least, the potential for some money. And not even much money. I don’t need to make a living off it. But I don’t enjoy being read. Being read is not a thing I find pleasant. Doing things I don’t enjoy is work. One gets paid for work, generally. Being read is work. Maybe paying will dissuade people.
So Patreon . . . I don’t know. It seems like it allows the things to be delivered about how I want them to be delivered. Gives them the right sort of environment. If no one paid or read them, I think they might work in a place like that too. Like, that would be perfect. Ghosts haunting an abandoned house. That suits them just fine. And if someone wants to read them, I get a bit of money for my trouble. So I get to be some sort of carnival barker. A sort of micro horror-show host offering tickets to see the malformed baby in the dirty bathtub. I’m comfortable with that role. It’s the sort of work I would like to have.
I have extremely low expectations. I mean, for the money I’m asking, I’m pretty sure you can get full news subscriptions and shit. You can get you’re Democracy Dies Behind a Paywall and unlimited articles from an assorted ZOOM flashers and some pretty good sites too. I’m pretty sure you can get nudies at these prices. I don’t know. I do know that I can’t compete with all that so I’m not really interested in trying. But I don’t really expect anyone to subscribe at all –it’s fucking annoying to have to keep subscribing to things– and I’m pretty amazed that anyone has even bothered to subscribe. But it makes me feel dread more than gratitude. Now, I have to try to be worth the price of admission.
Happy to have a spot for these things though.