Sunday, September 3, 2017

Writing in August, Hurricane Harvey, and Patreon

Well, no new story acceptances to announce from August, unfortunately. I did, however, write two new stories in August. It's kind of funny, I'd had a discussion with my Author Friend Tori pretty recently about how my short stories are indeed very short. Sometimes under two thousand words, mostly under five thousand. Well, in an interesting departure, one of my August stories topped 8000 words in its first draft! I've trimmed some in rewrites, tightening sentences up, but it's interesting to look at the outliers in my collection of stories to submit.

And wouldn't you know, the second September happened, it got COLD and RAINY. Like, calm down nature, I really like it when fall is kind of long and warm.

But now I'm gonna shut my mouth about the weather because holy shit Hurricane Harvey. I'm from the beach, but have never had to endure the hardships and losses of a hurricane (they mostly blew out to sea when I was a kid, and I was living in New York by the time Sandy happened).

I hear tell the Red Cross actually isn't the best place to donate to in the case of disasters, and so here are some places to look into if you have some cash to give:

Here's a list of Texas food banks  Feeding Texas is another organization.

The Houston Humane Society website is here, and they also have a Hurricane Harvey fund that can be directly donated to.

The North Texas chapter of the Society for Children's Books Writers and Illustrators is having a silent auction.

The Texas Diaper Bank helps with supplies for children, but also seniors and people with disabilities. AARP also has a Harvey Relief fund (apparently they've already met their initial matched goal of $1.5 million!) and Portlight Strategies dedicates itself to aiding people with disabilities.

(I don't have a relationship with any of these organizations and don't have detailed info on them, I just poked around a few places to see what people were talking about)

And while we're on the topic of donations, Strange Horizons is having their annual fund drive! I've read them for years and years, and have been submitting stories to them for a long time, and they regularly publish stories and poems that I love to read.

A thing I've been considering is a Patreon. It's how a lot of creative folks are getting stories and poems and a wide variety of other things directly to fans; some people make a few dollars a month, some people make a few thousand dollars a month (*cough*AmandaPalmer*cough*). Occasionally when I've had an acceptance, and acquaintances have read the stories, they've then asked where else they could find my writing, so it could be useful in that regard. I could use it to release exclusive short stories which have not been picked up by other markets (I actually, in conversation with one of these acquaintances, was like "ohhh so this is why Patreon can be a big deal for some people" and they were like "yes, Jen. Yes.")

Additionally, I could use it for teaser content leading up to the release of the werewolf trilogy (which could then help defray the costs of self publishing), that kind of thing. So if you have any experience with Patreon and have thoughts on the matter, I'd absolutely love to hear them!