I’m super excited (read: terrified) to be launching my Patreon! Here’s the link to sign up: https://www.patreon.com/rhiannonlouve

<3 <3 <3 Join before Valentine’s Day, and I will write a short love poem just for you! <3 <3 <3

I’m doing something a little different from most writer Patreons I’ve seen. Mostly I just want to send people my stories, and this is my plan for how to do that. You can click on the Patreon link above to see how I’m going about things.

See, my whole life, I’ve been an anti-materialistic hippie freak. The problem is, that this does not pay rent or utilities, nor does it buy groceries. This is (indirectly) why we need UBI. But I digress. My real point is that I deeply believe in principles of trusting in generosity, like Amanda Palmer talks about, except that, from having spent most of my adult life hard up for cash, I understand that—as society currently stands—just trusting in generosity is an unrealistic way of life for most people. Most of those who manage it are coming from a place of more privilege than we realize.

As such, I have always struggled between a strong desire to give my work away for free and trust the universe to take care of me, and a strong desire to support fellow struggling artists by valuing art highly and demanding fair pay for content produced. And these two desires don’t mesh super well. They set me at odds with myself, constantly undermining my own efforts to build an audience OR keep food on my own table.

I’ve been deeply blessed and privileged in my life to have been supported more than once on this journey by dear friends who believe in me despite my internal philosophical paralysis (Chidi Anagonye is what ethics scholars are really, actually like, true story). And now I’m embarking on a new step of my path.

Patreon, I hope, will provide me with something of the compromise I’ve always hoped to achieve. It has a paywall, which isn’t my favorite, but due to that paywall, I don’t have to fear that I’m costing other creators money by undervaluing my own work (especially those creators with fewer life advantages than I have been lucky enough to have).

And after stories are released on Patreon, having been funded by my patrons, I hope to put a certain number of them out for free with a clear conscience. If my patrons generously put me in a position to be able to give the world a small gift of the fruits of my labors, it’s not that I’m giving it up for nothing. It’s that my patrons financed the present.

Depending on how well the Patreon does, I may even put all of my stories out for free (though patrons will always get early access, of course).

In other news (since I’m nowhere near my 1000-word self-limit for blog posts), the relief that comes with our nation’s current reprieve from fascist assault is already giving my brain space to worry about other things. For example, I’ve been having stress dreams about Israel and the West Bank. Consciously, I’m far more focused on problems here at home, but this isn’t even the first time I’ve dreamed about Israel. Apparently my subconscious is trying to tell me something. (I am not Jewish, or Muslim, and I have no relatives in the region: full disclosure.) I suppose I’ll have to write something about it once I figure out what my own mind is trying to communicate to me.

In the mean time, I’m just here, hiding from the plague, grateful for the good luck that allows me to do so, and angry at the social structures in place to deny such luck to so many others. My advice to those like me, who are able to work from home and take cover well away from the pandemic’s front lines: pester your representatives to get healthcare and vaccines to essential workers and poor communities. They all deserve hazard pay and then some. And tip servers and delivery drivers WAY more than usual. People need the extra.

And I guess that’s it for now. I plan to try to post a minimum of once a month, usually in the latter half of the month.

Much love to all of you reading this. Stay safe out there. Wash your hands. Wear a mask when you go out. Apply critical thinking to your news sources. Here’s hoping we can all hug each other again sometime this year. <3