The Importance Of The Recurring Subscription

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Hey all, I don’t push Patreon all that hard because I’ve just got so much stuff coming out all the time there’s just not enough room to really give every platform its due, but it’s actually a very important platform, and here’s why:

It’s a recurring monthly subscription. That means I can more or less count on what’s coming in on a month, whereas other platforms I can’t really keep that going or guarantee the income stream. Amazon varies wildly for me, definitely doing better when I have a new release, but it’s the wild west there. Patreon let’s me see what’s happening and plan.

And that’s what’s cool. So far I’ve been able to deliver a full comic book and short story every single month since I relaunched last year, starting in September. That’s a LOT of content. Most people who have Patreons or the like do not deliver on that kind of level. I’m very proud of how much I deliver and rarely get any credit for it.

I’ve been lucky so far, having crowdfunds that have gotten me a 5-issue series, and 2-three issue series respectively, which meant I had 11 comics made quickly through that, but my other stuff in the works all comes out of pocket when I pay artists and to keep up this pace I’m going to have to be working on multiple projects at a time.

As it stands now, Patreon helps overall, but I can only sustain about 1 page of comic per month off of it.

If it grows, it keeps the business running and then the things like crowdfunds become more a generating-new-audience and profit center than they are hoping I can pay for the art in advance.

For full disclosure, a full comic page costs me anywhere from $100-150 or so per page, depending on the artists, and if I wanted to level up the artists I’m working with, that number will go up to around $200 per page (which I’d really like to do).

That means to sustain on Patreon a comic per month, I’d need to get up to about $2,000 in subscriptions, a big goal.  Getting to that point would be absolutely huge, and is probably a ways off, but we all start somewhere.

Here’s really where the numbers break down for goals that are doable as we build this up:

  • At about $300 a month, it makes it fully worthwhile to produce a professional short story of about 3,500 words for readers. That’s 8 cents per word, the current pro paying rate for magazines.
  • At about $600 a month, the Patreon will pay for my COLORS for a full comic book every moth, meaning all I’m eating is the line cost, which makes it far easier to produce.
  • At about $1200 a month, it pays for the line art there (you’ll note that $1200+$600 doesn’t add up to the $2K I mentioned — lettering and formatting costs that extra amount).
  • Then our big goal of $2,000 a month. That’s a comic book and my production of them becomes sustainable for Patreon by itself, which would be huge.

So that’s the road map to getting this all to build on a professional level. I really appreciate those of you who support now. It makes a difference even if it’s not all the way there yet. We’ll get there.

Most creators only offer short stories, or their books when they come out, or just simple rewards. I, by contrast, put up EVERYTHING I write. This makes the value a lot for people, especially if you’re buying my novels or comics digitally.

I’ve been focusing on Rislandia short stories lately to flesh out my steampunk world more, and of course there’s the comics, but growing this also will allow me to explore other mediums like I want as well — like Audio Dramas.

I want to produce an audio drama serial of Meta-Man very badly, have two scripts written, but just like comics — voice acting, music, editing, all takes money to produce. I haven’t worked out the costs completely yet but it’s likely in the thousands just to produce a single 20-30 minute episode using professional grade talent. Once the audience reaches a big enough point, we’ll be adding that into all this other cool stuff. Can you imagine a nice MP3 production of a Meta-Man audio podcast for a commute each month? It’d be so great!

That’s all the stuff in the works. If you want something too, don’t hesitate to ask! I’m here too cater to my readers and I want to give you the best experience possible. For now, I hope you’ll join the folk who are subscribing. Link is here. 

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