If in Doubt, Solicit Opinions


I have an issue with something. I’ve investigated it a dozen different ways. I’ve done research. I’ve tried to form an intelligent opinion. However, I think my basic prejudice is stopping me from seeing any advantages.

So, I’m coming to y’all for your opinions and maybe to steer me in a different direction.

Here’s the issue: Patreon.

Once upon a time, artists had patrons. They wouldn’t have been able to continue with their art without them. Art was not monetized and they would have starved to death. Probably where the starving artist living in an attic idea originated.

With the monetization of art, patrons dropped by the wayside. However, the idea is back and, frankly, it offends me.

As an author/artist you sign up for Patreon to get “sustainable” income. You offer special books/stories/blog posts to Patreon subscribers. They, in turn, sign up using the dollar amount you specify. Say, for example, I put a Patreon link on my page and charge $5.00 per month for you to get special blog posts. Or a story every month. Or special content that isn’t accessible to anyone else. That’s the premise of Patreon.

Here’s why it offends me:

  1. One author stated that the reason she was doing Patreon was to enable her to get stuff for her new house. Color me confused, but do readers have to pay for your toaster?
  2. One author whined about her recent expenses and said that Patreon enabled her to continue with her writing. I have an innate dislike for anyone who whines, especially if that person then solicits money. You’re a writer. Write. Don’t beg.
  3. One writer asked for $1.00 per month with the promise that she would add a suggested drink pairing to each story. Oh, and she said: “I want to make a living from my writing.” Well, honey child, so do the rest of us. If you’re a writer, write. Readers who read your books are your patrons. If you have to solicit money through other means, perhaps you should concentrate on writing another book.
  4. There are several popular blogs where the blog owner/writer thinks s/he is worthy of a tip for their wisdom. I do not agree. Whenever I see someone write a blog post and then solicit money for it, I’m frankly annoyed.

Where am I going wrong? What do you think of Patreon? 


14 thoughts on “If in Doubt, Solicit Opinions”

  1. Don’t you just hate to see something really cool only to realize that it hasn’t been developed yet? Send $$ to the gofundme page and they’ll send it to you when it’s done. Um, no.

  2. I’m not into the idea for many of the same reasons you are. I also think people abuse gofundme pages, and some kickstarter and indiegogo, as well as many other crowdfunding platforms. They’re not really regulated that well and they’re not tax deductible.

  3. I got a newsletter this week from an author who is new to me as I entered a contest and was rewarded with my inbox flooded with author newsletters. I was floored by the idea. No way am I going to pay an author, I don’t care who she is, a stipend for the privilege of reading her books! I have a limited book budget and it doesn’t include something like this or Kindle Unlimited. I want to read what I want to read, when I want to read it. This left a bad taste in my mouth. I unsubscribed from the author’s newsletter.

  4. You are NOT wrong. Any writer (or those who think they are) should write stories that grip their audience as your stories DO! I save what little I have left of my Social Security and believe me it takes many months until I can afford a book and I don’t have the money to subscribe to their personal funds. Maybe I should ask them to donate to me so I can afford things!

  5. Patreon is a concept that makes very little sense in this competitive world. If a writer is good enough to write books that others want to read and pay for , then the income will come. If a writer can’t make a living writing, maybe he should earn his livelihood another way. Personally, I believe that any reader smart enough to be selective in his reading material would not ever pay to read a blog.

  6. Stephani hit it on the head, my husband an I watch a vlog on youtube, and one draws names of people who donate to his vlog. Crazy, it’s good he doesn’t ask for it, usually people just send coffee cards and such but.. Wow it’s going crazy. Make money, sell books -sell books, write good stories…

  7. I didn’t know about Patreon and I agree with you that I don’t like it. I pay for books. If an author is good they can make a living with their writing. Other authors actually have regular jobs and write in their free time hoping that eventually they will be good enough to write full time. I like blogs because it helps me to know about the author, upcoming books etc. but I will not pay for a blog. In a lot of ways this reminds me of “street teams”. Street teams “help to promote an author”. They do this because they like the author and do it for free. Because of them the author sells more books. When I hear about an author reprimanding one of their “team” for not doing enough promoting I immediately refuse to purchase another of that authors books. (That is like forcing someone to buy you a toaster.)

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