Short, but important. Like this blog post!
A couple of days ago, I canceled (I hope I did it right) my Patreon.
I ran it for a while, but I have noticed myself falling short on immediate production of content, and I felt like it was unfair to be supported by the few people still on that list.
I have started a “Buy Me a Coffee” account, instead. It is more tip based. You can donate a dollar once, and never have to worry about being charge again!
I am still getting used to the new format. I ask for your patience as I figure out all of the in’s-&-out’s over the next bit. I think the layout I have right now is interesting, and it is very barebones right now. I plan on doing proper updates once I have everything sorted.
In the meantime, give it a gander! Tell me if you feel I should consider something that I haven’t set up yet, and tell me what you would like to see!
If you ARE one of the few who still support me on Patreon: I read that you may be charged for August, but if it happens after that, please let me know!
I found myself dwelling on the horrible concept that minimum wage is far to low. Mainly, I find myself rhuminating on the idea that someone could think that we’re paying enough for minimum wage jobs because they don’t deserve the same wages as a soldier, or whatever people are using for a wage cap.
Don’t you think that is exposing? If you don’t want Jimmy at Wal*Mart making as much as our soldiers, I hate to sound classist, but you’re kind of right. At the same time, Jimmy should not work for literally nothing.
So, let’s frame this differently. Jimmy should make more, so he can afford food, AND our soldiers should make more, so they feel appreciated. In fact, everyone should be able to afford food, shelter, and basic needs. The face that I live in a “rich” nation that presses for slave labour to keep things “affordable” is disgusting.
This is why I think Univeral Basic Income (UBI) is a great idea. You can keep the minimum wage down, if you must, AND people can afford life.
What I find most upsetting; having this opinion is considered radical and brave.
I was in discussion with someone over the worker shortage being seen in the USA right now. They were saying that no one wants to work because they are collecting CERB and being lazy, and I was actively offended.
Let me be clear: CERB is meant as emergency funds to work with a household income to supplement the financial damage caused by the Pandemic. IF it is actually better to live off that funding than work a job making “minimum wage”, is it not an issue being created by the place of employment?
It’s easier for me to find the Canadian numbers, and I almost promise that our are higher than the American.
In Canada, you get $500 a week. That is barely enough to live on, let alone do anything on. If that is actually better than what you make working 40 hours a week, there is a glaring issue. I’m on disability, and I make half that. Don’t get me started on why that is deplorable, because I will start calling everyone Comrad and my new favourite colour will be red.
So, do I think people should be living off CERB or the equivalent? No, but I also see there being no shame if it is more than you make anyway. I see the shame being with the billion-dollar industries giving people less than a living wage to break their backs making money for a shadow they will never see.
Somehow, this opinion is radical. Please, tell me how I am being radical?
I set up a new donation thing at Buy Me a Coffee! It’s a bit more user friendly than Patreon, but I will still keep that one active for those who prefer that.
As I have mentioned before in a blog post I cannot be fucked to find so I can link to it, this site does have (minimal) upkeep costs. Plus, it is my primary source of income right now, other than government money, since I cannot work.
Please, consider donating. No, there is no obligation. My animals do like eating, though.
The one thing I will promise through Buy Me a Coffee is a monthly conversation. I am spending some time looking for a way to set that up right now. I will have everything figured out by February at the latest.
I have not talked much about my book in a while.
I assume that, if you are interested, you have already picked up a copy. After a conversation with a friend of mine on Twitter, I realized that I should really stop thinking that way.
So, I re-edited and re released my book back in March. I expanded it with several short stories, and moved it from 73 pages to 195 pages.
On the physical copies, I have made the cover art black with white writing, but the opposite is still true for the digital.
I have been pushing towards buying from Friessen Press for two reason: They pressed the book, so they are going to have the proper copy. AND I try to damndest to support private and independently run storefronts, whether digital or physical.
NOW, FOR SOMETHING MORE DOWER.
I know I expel the great parts about being independent often, but the bad parts are starting to become to big to handle.
Since the initial release of You’re Not Dead back in 2016, I have made a total of 832.89 in total sales. For one month, that would be decent, but we’re talking a period of over 4 years. Considering by outgoing was 4878.93, I have not even made a full quarter of my outgoing back. To top everything off, that payout doesn’t include things like web hosting, facebook ads, or physical copies to be reviewed on the international stage. The real number is closer to 6000.
Anyway, the point of this post is to ask that you at least consider looking over my book. There is a review posted on the linked page, and you all have a feeling for my writing style by now.
The title of this alludes to what I want to discus today.
We speak of normal as if there is a ridged and long lasting definition for what it is. If we went by the first time I heard it in relation to someone’s life, it would include accepting the Gulf War and Bill Clinton is the president of the USA. Human rights were discussed but not universally implemented, smoking was far from being ban in most countries, and grade 13 still existed in Canada.
Social changes are inevitable, so what does it mean to lead a “normal” existence? It could be argued that the nuclear family, a steady paying job, and aspirations that are achievable are normal. Ironically, that cuts a huge swath of the population out of the definition. I mean, by definition, single children families, single parents, and the disabled would all be cut from the definition. Collectively, they make up a greater majority than the sample size. Would they no longer define normal?
This is why I choose to define normal for myself, in that I just define it as being comfortable in life.
Now, where this gets tricky is when people decide to compare and contrast. All because I cannot walk does not mean that I cannot have a normal day by my standards. This leaves me to wonder by what metric people are gading “normal” when it does not exist?
There are plenty of studies showing how 99% of the wealth is held by 1% of people (cite). Their lives are the ones portrayed in movies and TV shows, so are they the definition of normal? If majority reigns, normal should be living in destitute conditions under a communist regime. (looking at current populations of China and India [India is not communist, but does have a large population in poverty according to the World Vision poverty calculations])
I vote we all define our own normal. Our own place to keep our minds at peace. We have to survive this world, we should be able to dictate what we consider normal.
This is kind of a different topic for me, so if my information is off-base, please forgive me and give me proper sources below.
Let’s Plays: I cannot think of a more decisive topic in my house. I think they are fantastic, my dad thinks they are a waste of time. He wonders why I am willing to watch someone play a game for a day worth of video as opposed to play the game myself. I get it, I really do.
My reason for watching someone play a game comes to only three reasons. The first of which is I am always broke. It would be fantastic if I had all of the money for every console and game that my heart desires, but I do not even break cost of living most months. Seeing how most games that hold my interest are either 70+, or on a console that I don’t own (see the Switch), I have no ways of actually playing said game. The only way I can experience it is by watching others play it. Most Let’s Play(ers?) already play in a similar way that I do: they search all of the dark corners for hidden bits of lore. That is a (mostly) free way I can get the entertainment that I crave.
The second reason is time. Most games that I want to play (Persona 5, for instance) take hours, if not days, to finish. With the cavalcade of games that come out every quarter, I do not have even a quarter of the time required to play everything. Throw in old games, open-ended games (Minecraft, Terraria, Grand Theft Auto) and games that piggy-back off of older titles (Life is Strange) and I would not have time to sleep or eat, let alone write. Watching someone play for an hour while describing the lore surrounding the areas that peak my interest satiates that part of me that craves all the games.
The third reason is just simply skill. For instance, I love the concept of the Dark Souls franchise. I own all of them, and I have put dozens of hours into each. I am not good at Dark Souls. I have put the dozens of hours into them and die incredibly quickly, sometimes not even being able to get out of the first place. They are made to be very hard. Part of why I love them is that they do not hold the players hand and refuse to guide anyone to anything. I still love the atmosphere, art, and worlds of these games. I can ONLY experience these games through a third party.
For these reasons, and I’m sure that I’m forgetting more, I love Let’s Plays. I get my shots of lore, as well as get to experience the parts of games that I would love. I still play games like Tetris or Hearthstone myself, because watching someone else play would just frustrate me (Everyone has their own way of being “good”).
I have not done the research, but I am curious how Let’s Plays effect game sales in the long term. I have a pretty good feeling that the explosion of popularity for Minecraft was partially fuelled by groups like The Yogscast, but I remain ignorant to if Atlas’ refusal to allow anyone to publish gameplay of Persona 5 has effected longterm sales.
Let’s face it, anyone who wanted to know anything about Persona 5 has bought Persona 5.
I have been stewing over this topic for days. The idea that you can do anything if you try hard enough, you can make it. I hate this concept, and I want to fight it to the best of my ability. The wall I hit, however, is that I cannot dispute the necessity of trying regardless of end position. If you work hard, you will be compensated. If you do not work hard, you will be repremanded. To assume that it just takes time and elbow greas to make it somewhere can actually be both heartbreaking, and damaging to standing in the greater endevour climate.
I spent over 10 years in bands trying my hardest to make it. There was a constant climb upwards in the scene, do not misunderstand my points, but I always put out multiple times what I made. I offset any sort of financial downfall with jobs. I did music because I loved it and needed to do something creative. I never had any illusions that I could live off of it, though it was an end goal.
That unfortunate reality goes for any artistic doing. You can try, you can succeed, and you can fail. Sometimes, all three in the same week. To assume that you are going to make it big is dangerous. It does happen, but it does not more often. There are so many things at play when considering a career in the arts, and doing one thing is often not the path to go down. To assume that if you just write that one song that everyone will love and you’ll be fine is actually a safer bet than believing that your band will do gang busters.
Another way to look at it: I was a drummer. That means, that under copyright laws in Canada for a musical composition, I had rights to the recordings of my drums. If the primary song writers could rerecord my drums without my knowledge, they could have stripped me of any financial rights. Lucky for me, I played with collections of stand-up people who never even thought of doing things like that. Instead, we kept playing. Getting gigs whenever we could, going on short tours, recording albums out of our pockets, and not eating.
10 plus years of that. Now, three years writing. No money made, but a fuck-tonne put out. That’s part of why I opened up the Patreon. just $1 a month gets you a subscription. That means you get a list of your name on this site, plus you get ansP releases about a month before anyone else in a fancy PDF! Hell, if you donate $10 a month, you get the pleasure of knowing that I consider you a fantastic human being and I will love you for a very long time! Your name gets put on the list with a little note of FANTASTIC put beside it. Even if you cancel your donation, or lower it, that denotation NEVER goes away!
Something that has been literally holding my life back is people making empty promises. I couldn’t tell you how often I am told that someone will do something, then either don’t come through, or pretend that the conversation never happened.
Now, it is something entirely different if you say “I’m going to visit every so often” then fail to do so. That falls under the category of wishful thinking. Therefore, you’re a dick, but you haven’t ruined lives or bailed on anything greater than a nice gesture.
The kind of promises that I am talking about is saying something along the lines of offering to pay for a service, only to renege that offer past the point of no return. Especially when the decision was made only because you make yourself available on fallback.
Example: when I published my first book, I did so independently. That is to say that I paid for printing, editing, and distribution. Now, I did this with no expectation to be paid by anyone for doing any of it, but I was promised by a third party that they would reimburse me for what I have put out. I made sure, triple checked, then went ahead with aditional things that made the publication easier. Thing that I would not have bothered with if I wasn’t promised that they would cover the whole cost.
I am well aware that it was expensive: it cost me around three-thousand upfront. My issue lies with the idea that I dropped another two-thousand on advertising and localization that I would not have if I didn’t think that the initial was going to be covered.
Now, is that my fault? I cannot say that it’s not. I didn’t wait for the money to appear before I spent more. If I was smarter, I would have waited for the exchange before I went ahead and dropped more onto that failing venture.
Please, keep in mind: I say failing because I made back about a fifth of what I put into the project. I do NOT regret the book, though I do feel like the rewrite that I have half completed is MUCH better. More news on that in the coming weeks.
That is one, very shallow, example of what I am talking about. I could go into issues surrounding school, medical stuff, rent, dogs, food, and all of this would ignore the times that I have been in a good financial standing and had my questions disregarded to generate a much worse situation. I am not going to bring up spacifics. There is too high of risk of the people involved reading this and realizing that I am talking about them, and I don’t want to deal with any of it right now.
I guess this devolved into a rant about money. Again. It seems to be a reocuring topic on this blog, and I am very sorry about that. I very much wish that I could ignore money and just focus on other things, like writing and walking.
Side-note: does anyone else find it mildly offensive that society puts so much emphasis on walking? I realize that this comes off as me justifying me not walking, but that just strengthens my point. The fact that I don’t walk shouldn’t make me seem like a burden or someone you need to caudle. In fact, what I have survived (both medically and in life) should inspre the opposite reaction from people. I AM OKAY. I WILL SURVIVE.
Another aside, please consider giving to my Patreon. I am okay, physically and mentally. I cannot afford to feed my dogs some weeks, though. I might be okay physically or whatever, but that doesn’t mean that I can hold a traditional job. Plus, everyone is so close to hitting the $100 mark! I want to do something amazing for that number. I want to post something fascinating, or do a video, or bake dinner for people, or SOMETHING. If you have ideas, place them in the comments below. Please, consider helping me hit that mark. Even just a dollar is fucking fantastic. PLUS and the ansP subscription is only $1 right now! That means you get releases early!