24 Jan 2015
by Jeffrey Thomas
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(A drawing by yours truly.)
Seeing respected writers like Brian Keene create pages at the crowdfunding site Patreon recently, I’ve decided to have a go at it, myself.
The rap I posted at my page will best explain how it all works:
Hi. I’m Jeffrey Thomas, an author of…well, you tell me, because I’m not good at classification. I’ve had stories reprinted in books with titles like THE YEAR’S BEST HORROR STORIES (DAW Books), THE YEAR’S BEST FANTASY AND HORROR (St. Martin’s Press), and THE YEAR’S BEST WEIRD FICTION (Undertow Publications). I’ve been in anthologies with such themes as New Weird, Cyberpunk, and the Cthulhu Mythos. If I’m diverse, it’s because I’m restless…I like to explore, and I like to believe I attract the explorative, open-minded reader.
Why am I here on this site, huckstering for your hard-earned money? Well, to date all my books have had a price tag on them, so this concept isn’t actually all that different. Making a monthly pledge for regular posts of new fiction here is like paying an author for a book in increments, rather than all at once, like those old serials that used to portion out stories by Charles Dickens in twenty installments. The main difference is that, as in the case of self publication of digital books, a publisher isn’t getting most of the proceeds to cover production and distribution expenses. Still, this is a relatively new approach — sort of a cross between crowdfunding and self publication — but as I say, I like to explore new territory.
So what am I specifically proposing, here?
Though I’m offering a couple of additional rewards in return for a slightly greater monthly pledge, mostly I’m just asking if people who might like to support my work would be willing to spend $1 a month in order to view currently exclusive content. (For instance, every month I myself donate $5 to the Lovecraft eZine, plus I’ve begun supporting some fellow authors at Patreon like Brian Keene and Nikki Guerlain — check them out!) You need only participate for as long as you want, and can increase or decrease the monthly pledge if desired. But yup, minimum pledge is just $1. Hey, if I shambled my pitiful ass up to you in Starbucks, just as you were about 3/4 of the way through your venti Caffe Latte, and asked you if I could finish that dollar’s worth of coffee in order to give myself enough energy to complete the story I’m writing, would you say no? WOULD YOU DENY ME YOUR ONE QUARTER OF A VENTI CAFFE LATTE WITH BACKWASH IN IT?
Sorry, got carried away. My mind takes these wild flights…see, that’s I mean. But where was I?
What I’m proposing for the minimum $1 monthly pledge is this: every week, and that’s 52 weeks in a year, I’ll add a brand new piece of fiction directly to my Patreon page (and I’ll attach it as a Mobi file, too, should you prefer to read it on an e-reader). It will most likely be a short story, but who knows — at some point maybe I’ll serialize something longer, too, like a novella. I’ll shoot for a weekly target of around 1,000 words, but muses are notoriously fickle — the word count could go below, could go over. All I know for sure is, whatever I write will be previously unpublished, so you’ll be reading stuff that may not see print in a book until quite a ways down the road…if ever. And I promise you another thing: whatever it is I write, it will be weird. It will be fantastical, maybe dreamlike, and very likely horrific. It might be set in my dark future milieu of Punktown. It might take place down the road from you. It could be tragic, or humorous. It could be any number of these things combined.
Whatever it is, you’ll get to see it first…if you’ll just share that quarter cup of latte with me.
I’ve added reward for various-sized monthly pledges:
Pledge $1.00 or more per month
For a monthly pledge in this amount, you will have access to fiction written for my Patreon page, one new piece of give-or-take 1,000 words posted every week.
Pledge $10.00 or more per month
For a monthly pledge in this amount, you will have access to fiction written for my Patreon page, one new piece of give-or-take 1,000 words posted every week. Also, I will immediately draw you a WEIRD drawing (I’m also an artist) and mail it to you with a handwritten personal note of thanks.
Pledge $20.00 or more per month
For a monthly pledge in this amount, you will have access to fiction written for my Patreon page, one new piece of give-or-take 1,000 words posted every week. Also, I will immediately draw you a WEIRD drawing (I’m also an artist) and mail it to you with a handwritten personal note of thanks, along with a one-of-a-kind handwritten flash fiction piece that will never appear in print.
Also, I have several milestone goals:
$300 per month — An e-book file of my novel SUBJECT 11 for all supporters.
If my monthly pledges reach the $300 mark, I’ll share a file at my Patreon page — for all supporters, no matter the size of the pledge — of my short novel SUBJECT 11. SUBJECT 11 is one of the books of which I’m most proud, telling the story of ten subjects in a mysterious experiment, isolated in an abandoned complex.
$400 per month — An e-book file of my novel BONELAND for all supporters.
If my monthly pledges reach the $400 mark, I’ll share a file at my Patreon page — for all supporters, no matter the size of the pledge — of my novel BONELAND. BONELAND is another of the books of which I’m most proud, concerning an alternate history United States influenced by unseen alien entities who feed off human violence.
$500 per month — An e-book file of my novel BEYOND THE DOOR for all supporters.
If my monthly pledges reach the $500 mark, I’ll share a file at my Patreon page — for all supporters, no matter the size of the pledge — of my book BEYOND THE DOOR. BEYOND THE DOOR is a series of short stories told within the framework of two men who meet in a train station and exchange weird anecdotes.
As I write this, I have already posted three brand new stories on my page, to be either read at the site or via an attached Mobi file. They are THE PROMOTION AT NEWCASTLE, THE DOOM THAT CAME TO HAMLETVILLE, and SOUTHERN CROSS.
So I hope you’ll consider pledging just that $1 a month to receive weekly weird fiction from me. Give it a try! As I say, you can cancel your pledge at any time.
Whatever you do…stay weird.