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Wait, Where Did Your Patreon Go, Jenny?

Posted in Uncategorized

If you’re one of the rad people who pledged to me on Patreon, you might be wondering, “Wait, why didn’t my pledge to Jenny get charged this month?”

I quit Patreon.

Hear me out on this one. I haven’t forgotten the original reason for starting the Patreon in the first place. Some of you were asking how you could show your support and appreciation for the blog without buying my books (because they’re not your genre or for whatever reason that I totally get; I’m not required reading), and Patreon seemed like a good solution. For a while, it totally was.

But then it wasn’t. Not because of anything you did, or anything Patreon did. It’s what my mind did.

Remember on Monday, when I mentioned how I needed to start doing things without monetizing them? When I started this blog, it was because I was told I should. Publishers noticed that blogging was a thing, and of course this meant that authors had to do the thing, because it might make the publishers money. Blogging was touted as a marketing tool. You’d go to an industry conference and at least two panels would mention something about the importance of having a blog (this was pre-Twitter and Facebook, which is the new “what do you mean you don’t have [thing]?!” of writing conferences). So, I started a blog, and I didn’t really know what to do with it. It seemed like all anyone wanted authors to blog about was writing. We were supposed to take some of our writing time and use it to write about writing so that other writers could read it and it would help their writing.

Okay, so, some authors really, really love talking/reading/teaching about craft. One of my dear author friends is like this. I’ve never been inside her house, but my assumption is that her furniture is built entirely of books on craft. There’s nothing wrong with being into learning, and it would be silly of me to sit here and be like, “You don’t need to learn the craft and mechanics of storytelling!” because that’s bad advice. Of course you need to learn it. But when I read a book about writing, I’m hating it 100% of the time. So why the frick would I want to blog about it?

So basically all I did was blog stupid shit until one day it became relevant. That’s the key to blogging success, by the way. Just start doing a thing and never stop doing that thing until someone notices or you die an unappreciated genius.

I really enjoy blogging and putting stuff up here and talking to all you guys about it, but then I went and monetized it. Then it became a job. And I started to panic. Oh man, people were giving me money every month to do this. That meant there had to be some kind of value. And oh my god, what if I couldn’t deliver the next chapter of Biter (which I’m still working on and do plan to release) or The Afflicted (again, not abandoned, but shit happened last year)? What if I went a whole week without a post? What if I went a whole month without a recap?

So, there I was, panicky and burned out and trying not to panic because it would burn me out, but my burn out was making me panic. It was a nightmare and I locked up and wrote very little in the last quarter of the year. I decided, you know, I have to make a change.

Closing down my Patreon was the only way I could refresh my mind and my attitude toward blogging. It’s not that I didn’t appreciate you guys throwing your hard earned dollars at me. It’s just that it was making this space a job, when it used to be a fun thing. And while it definitely still benefits my job (because I have a built-in audience I can show my covers and tell my plans to), this was all so much more fun before I had that pressure.

So, to make a long story short

Tom Hiddleston as Loki, saying, "it's too late."

basically, I want blogging to be fun again and I can’t do that if someone is giving me money for it. So, thank you for your cash, I promise I spent it irresponsibly on shit that I didn’t need, and keep on rocking in the free world.

4 Comments

  1. Atrista
    Atrista

    I admire that you were able to make changes for your own peace of mind instead of being reluctant to do something that might upset some of your readers. Honestly, I think this is one of the biggest downfalls of YouTube’s monetization as well. I understand that it is a good thing to pay for the content you consume, and to support the content creators you enjoy. But, it can also become a burden to the creators themselves and endanger creativity.

    January 4, 2017
    |Reply
  2. Alex
    Alex

    I hope you still blog with the same zeal as before because, yes, your genre isn’t my thing. But I appreciate what you post here, the thoughts you have, and the commentary on some big events such as the election.

    And here I began as a loyal follower of your Buffy rewatch. Now I check for new posts on a regular basis. 😀 Keep at it, Jenny Gallifrey Trout!

    January 4, 2017
    |Reply
  3. Tessany
    Tessany

    You rock Jenny.

    I know, I’d personally take only one blog post every other month if that’s what you feel you can creatively put out, if the alternative is none at all because you’ve burned yourself right out.

    You do what you need to be happy and healthy. That’s what’s important.

    January 4, 2017
    |Reply
  4. I’ve been feeling exactly the same way about Patreon — several friends have suggested it to me, but the idea of committing to coming up with special content worth people’s money is terrifying. I’d rather just keep putting what I have out there when I have it and enjoying the occasional sales I get on artwork without feeling like I have to produce.

    January 4, 2017
    |Reply

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