Charting a New Course

Life is about change. Once upon a time, I was alone. I lived in a pit of a basement apartment working a crazy schedule. I played games on my computer and puttered around with writing. Then, I had a girlfriend and we did things together. She made me go…outside! Then eventually, she told me I was going to be a father, something I never thought I’d be. This cast a whole new light on my writing and I dug in. That doesn’t mean I wrote better, just more. More leads to better, so they say, and in the four years since, I do hope I’ve improved some. I’ve certainly sold a moderate pile of stories, even my first poem, and been invited to work on projects. That is something.

But now things have changed even more drastically, with twins and a house, and even less time. Does less time mean no writing? No. It does mean I need to focus more, make every page count. My days of sending stories to random markets seem to be sliding to a close.

I need another outlet for stories that didn’t meet with gatekeepers’ approval on the first or second shot and a means to see a return on all the hours and days I worked on those pieces.

To this end, I propose a new change. Patreon. Patreon, for those who don’t know, is a website created to help creative people bring their work, be it photography, painting, videos or writing (amongst others) to their audience directly and to create something of a community.

Patreon is a subscription based service, allowing the user to choose from a number of support levels. I will be starting at one dollar per month. You can subscribe, read some of my work before anyone else, see exclusive blog posts, even some readings by me. But there will also be other perks, such as (depending on backer level) port cards, coloring pages, refrigerator magnets and whatever else I can think of, possibly T-shirts. Many will be short/ limited runs. Others will be early runs of promo materials, which, like the fiction, you’ll have first access to, months before it hits Amazon and other markets.

Amazon may allow self publishing, but it is a very impersonal, strictly business, environment. I will utilize Amazon and other online outlets, but I hope to form a team on Patreon who will help me find the best direction for my work. Which will persist? My  steampunk stories? Harder scifi? Fantasy?

I’m looking to start up later this month (*cough*, June 30 is my birthday *cough* a great day to sign up), likely starting with a series of steampunk stories of our friends Aeolus and Chiron. A few of their tales have come out in anthologies, and the plan now is to flesh out the great, extended arcs into novella length collections. There’s also a series of novels on the horizon. I edit and post my unreleased novels from a number of genres, serially, a chapter at a time. I’ll be looking for remarks and suggestions toward improvement, but of course, such aren’t required.

I’ll be back on later this week with an update on recent and upcoming publications and a link for that Patreon page once I’ve set it live. Thanks as always for dropping by and keep reading and writing!

Here’s that link! https://www.patreon.com/JohnAMcColley

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