Saturday, June 18, 2016

I Am Not Rich, Nor Can I See Rich From Here

There actually seems to be some confusion about this sort of thing, so let me clear it up.

Writing and illustration are not hobbies for me.  They are how I make a living.  The books I have for sale on Amazon and elsewhere are not indulgences, they are sincere money-making ventures.

Now it IS true that I enjoy doing this kind of work much more than any other job I've had.  If I'd stuck with any of my previous means of employment, I'm sure that by now I would either be dead or in jail--dead from a stress-induced heart attack, or in jail from murdering one of the many idiot co-workers or customers I was forced to deal with on a daily basis.  Of course there were many great people I did work with or was happy to serve, but anyone who's worked in a job in retail or the service industry knows exactly the type of idiots I'm talking about.

Anyway, I sent 23+ years working those kinds of jobs, and 15 of those years working like crazy on the side to turn myself into a creative type with enough skill and drive to make a living off of it.  I was able to transition to the point where I'm doing it full time, but its still a struggle.  My average yearly income hovers around the poverty line despite working all day, every day most weeks.  I am paying my bills and things are looking up, but things are still proceeding at a slow pace and I still have a long way to go.

Some people have asked for discounted books or why I don't give some books away for free or why I supposedly "charge so much" for books.  None of these decisions are made on whims or in a vacuum.  The amount I charge (usually $2.99) is the minimum where I can make a decent profit off my work. And by 'decent profit' I mean just enough to keep me in cheap coffee and wifi so i can keep producing the kind of stuff you guys like.  If a price is higher, that's usually because the work is significantly longer and/or took significantly more effort than average to produce.

Now if I could give my stuff away fro free and still earn a decent living, truthfully, I would be happy to.  I take a great amount of satisfaction and pride at all the positive feedback my work gets here and other sites, writing and artwork both.  I have tried various programs on Amazon and Smashwords offering books for reduced prices or for free, but while it does give that one book increased exposure, it also resulted in zero cross-over sales.  I have heard it works differently for some authors, but for me it turned out to be a big bust.

This is why I ask that if you do like my books or artwork, you become a patron on my PATREON PAGE (Link Below).  Even if you can only contribute $1 a month, it'll go a long way in making things easier for me so I can keep writing books.  Thanks!