WELCOME TO MY PATREON PAGE
WHAT IS PATREON?
Patreon is a crowd-funding platform. Crowd-funding is a two-way system whereby fans support creators financially, with very modest sums paid monthly, and in return receive non-monetary rewards, such as newsletters, snippets from work-in-progress and more. It's a fantastic way of following someone through the creative process, and getting an insight into all the highs and lows that come with it.
Here's a little preview of how it works, taken from my Patreon page.
The Coffee Connoiseur
$5 or more per month
For just the price of a cup of decent coffee, you'll get:
A thank-you acknowledgement on my website
Access to my monthly newsletter. I might talk about the writing process, my work-in-progress, anything that has caught my attention over the last couple of weeks, book reviews - a bit of a lucky dip!
My undying gratitude - obviously!
A fun title
The serious stuff - how much you would like to contribute per month (it's an American site, so it's all in dollars) - NB - In the US, tax is added at the end of the transaction so, all my British patrons, you will be charged VAT on top of this. Just saying ...
An illustration. All of mine are about delicious food and drink. I wonder why .....?
Putting it into context. You'd spend this amount just on a coffee. You wouldn't miss it!
And finally ... a list of what you'd get in return.
Click on the button and it will take you to the Patreon website. You can check out my page and decide if you'd like to be a part of my creative process!
Why am I asking you to support me through Patreon?
Artists and creators (and authors, like myself) often struggle to get a sustainable work/life balance. I'm a good example; I have a novel being published pretty soon and you'd think I'd be working away on the next one, but it's impossible. That idea that authors get big fat advances just isn't really the case. I did get an advance, way back last year; paid in dollars and translated into sterling (at a pretty poor exchange rate). I received just enough to pay a few bills and buy some Christmas presents for my family.
When the book starts selling, the money from the first sales will go back to the publisher to pay off the advance. Payments from sales are made at intervals - it can be every three months or even once a year. So it can be it can be absolutely ages before any money comes through the system to the author. Thousands (OK, hundreds... well, dozens perhaps) of people in dozens of countries could be reading my novel, and in the meantime - well, I'm still working for The Man. And it's not like I hate working for The Man; it's just that it takes up all my time and energy, when I would rather be concentrating on writing the next novel.
Some authors seem able to write in fits and starts; evenings after work, weekends. But I can't work that way. My novels call for a lot of ongoing research. It can take me two hours to figure out something relevant to my novel, and then another couple of hours to get it written in a way I'm happy with, and I have to do the two things in tandem while the research is still fresh in my mind. So I need sustained writing time, several hours a day, most days of the week. It's challenging and fun and I love it. But as for paying the bills - er, no.
If you support me through Patreon, this is what you will be funding
COIN AND CONSCIENCE - my next novel
My next novel has the working title of Coin and Conscience (I don't think that will be the finished title but it will do for now; it makes me feel a bit Jane Austen-y). This is what you'd be funding, so let me give you an idea of my thoughts on this at the moment.
In 'When Winter Comes' I have a character named Rose Gerald. Here she is;
"Every alternate Saturday afternoon, I attend the Ladies' Quilting Bee. There are a dozen or so of us ladies and we take it in turns to meet in one another's houses.
The first Saturday in June our meeting is at Mrs Gerald's boarding house. We assemble at her house in a most daring frame of mind. It is an entirely respectable establishment, or so we all assure ourselves, but rumor has it that her past is something questionable.... that Mrs Gerald bought her boarding house with the proceeds of her time as a riverboat gal [and] we do not say that aloud [but] Minnie and I stick pretty close together as the maid shows us into Mrs Gerald's parlor."
I love the character and once 'When Winter Comes' was finished I decided to explore Mrs Gerald's time as a 'riverboat gal' and did a lot of research into the Mississippi riverboat gamblers. I liked the idea of her being rather scandalous, forced to make a living in a man's world through gambling. Although I've been playing with this idea for some time, it didn't quite 'gel' - partly, I suspect, because I just couldn't settle down and devote a couple of solid weeks to writing up my ideas.
However, a few weeks ago I went for a day trip to Ramsgate in Kent. Ramsgate has more listed Georgian buildings than Bath, and was highly fashionable for a time during the Regency period. I fell in love with the idea of writing a Regency novel set here; not a romp or a romance, but something a bit darker. And my research into gambling just fell into place; the story of a respectable woman who for various reasons is forced to find a way of supporting her family and this is how she does it.
This is just a small example of my writing process. If you support me through Patreon, you will have substantially more access to the way my novel develops, discussions on characterisation, fashion, the manners of the time - and see how my research translates into fact-based historical fiction.