Recently I’ve received multiple questions from readers about financial support for my writing, in the form of a Patreon account, e-books, or similar things. And that’s kind of cool; it’s very flattering that people like my work enough to want to pay for it, especially when I’m already putting it out here for free.
The thing is, this is just something I do for fun. In real life, I’m a fairly successful computer programmer who makes enough to live comfortably already. Many years ago, Howard Tayler, one of the all-time great webcomic authors, quit his job as a programmer to devote himself fully to Schlock Mercenary and essentially live off of the generosity of his readers. By all accounts, he’s done pretty well for himself since then, and more power to him for being able to pull that off! I met him at a con once, and he’s a great guy.
Well, I’m not Howard Tayler.
I write for fun, and as Mark Twain pointed out in his famous discussion of fence painting and human psychology, if you take something someone does for fun and turn it into something they do for money, it’s likely to become a chore and suck all the fun out of it for them.
Having said that, I’m still working on Invisible–I’m currently writing the 8th chapter–and when it’s done I’m planning on publishing it as a non-free ebook, but I don’t expect it to ever bring in revenue to rival my salary from my actual job. I just want to see what it’s like to do it. 🙂 And I may or may not set up a Patreon account at some point in the future, but for the moment it’s not on the to-do list.
As I said, I just write for fun. My compensation is seeing people enjoy my work. So if anyone out there wants to help out, spread the word! Share the stories on social media. Help keep the TVTropes pages updated as new chapters come out. Post recommendations on relevant forums. (Seriously. Right now, about 60% of my incoming traffic comes from a single post on a single forum. I’ve never heard of bato.to before, but apparently it’s a really popular site, because traffic shot way up when someone called Nadassar recommended The Tales of Paul Twister there a few months ago, and it’s stayed up since then. A few more like that and I’d be very happy! And Nadassar, whoever you are, I love ya!) Even stuff like creating fan art and linking back to here would help bring in interested readers. 🙂
I write this stuff for fun, and I assume that’s why most of you are reading it. So spread the fun around the Web, bring in more people to read and leave comments on the chapters, and it just gets better and more fun for everyone. And it won’t cost you a thing. 😛