Doing things for money

My economic situation has improved significantly in the last year, freeing up more resources for leisure stuff and a better diet. Both have had a huge impact on my mental and physical health and on my creativity. A brain is powered by food, and the relationship between poverty, diet and poor mental health is something I intend to come back to.

Of course I have heard all the arguments the other way – art should be made for love, not money. Druid work should be given away freely as it’s not spiritual to ask for money. To do that you have to be independently wealthy, have a partner who can fund everything, or be in such good health that you can work two jobs. That logic leaves us with creativity and priesthood as options only for the privileged. I’m not cool with that.

The internet gives us the means to have many things for free – it is one of the great powers of this technology. It brings us to new challenges and new ways of doing things. It has never been easier for an indy creator to find an audience, but it has probably never been harder to earn a living in this way. It is one of the reasons I find Patreon so exciting as a model. Using Patreon means that, as a creator, you can just put your stuff out there. If people love you enough, they can drop a few dollars in the hat each month, and get some extras for so doing.

I’ve been using Patreon for a couple of months now. It’s got me writing short stories and poetry on a much more regular basis, and I’m using it to host a monthly newsletter as well. Having people willing to put in the hat for this, and to support my other work, has really helped me emotionally. At the moment, the extra money is not a game changer, but I’ve thought about how I would use extra money should this grow.

One of my goals is to be able to justify making at least one video a month. The odds are this would involve poetry, songs, short stories and filming things that are not my face. I’ve been dabbling a bit as it is and have a couple of videos to finish and release in the autumn. Beyond that, my goal is to be able to afford to use some of Tom’s time on a cartoon strip we’ve wanted to do for years. It’s called The Wrong Dog. Ultimately, my major goal is more space. This could be studio space in the short term, but longer term I need to live somewhere else. The living room /dining room/writer space/ office/studio/storage area arrangement frankly doesn’t work very well for doing any of the things we need to do.

Having more income gives me more scope to invest in my wellbeing. It might mean being able to afford a weekly Tai Chi class – something I really want to do. I could use some extra funding to take courses to develop my skills and ideas. I’ve done some single day workshops through the summer, and that’s been decidedly good for me. I have fantasies about going on holiday.

Here are the things my household is doing for money, should you feel so moved…


Books for sale on Amazon   and Book Depository  (most of my stuff can be bought anywhere that sells books)

Etsy (for posters and Tom Brown original art)

If you want to support a creative person but can’t throw money at them, pointing at their work, reviewing them, and the like is a really great help and always appreciated. Feedback is good, too. Most of us unfamous creative folk keep going because we think someone might just want it – putting a hand up to being the person who wants the stuff can help keep a person making and sharing.


About Nimue Brown

Druid, author, dreamer, folk enthusiast, parent, wife to the most amazing artist -Tom Brown. Drinker of coffee, maker of puddings. Exploring life as a Pagan, seeking good and meaningful ways to be, struggling with mental health issues and worried about many things. View all posts by Nimue Brown

5 responses to “Doing things for money

  • R Cawkwell

    I fantasise about having a holiday too…Financial stress is decidedly not good for the mental health. I have been considering setting up a Patreon but I’m scared. I don’t know that anyone would want to support me or that I’d be able to offer anything exclusive. Except possible early access to ebooks of my novels? An exclusive book review a month?

    I’m glad to hear it’s helped you.

  • Tan Harvey

    I’m also looking at Patreon, I need to find a way where I can ‘eat’ as well as ‘heat’, instead of relying on my daughter to feed me – I find the ones who criticise those who charge usually belong to the ‘New-Age Freeloaders’ category – they want everything for nothing.

  • Christopher Blackwell

    One thing that I like to teach kids who come to my shop with their parents, is, “That having money gives you choices, until you spend it.” As I tell them they might want to buy something else down the road, and if they have money in their pocket, then they can make choices about what they do with it. Note that this not always get me customers, and it does not always make me money. But it gives the kid another way think about money as being a source of choices. I am often thanked by parents for pointing this out.

    I also point out the right of a person to discover themselves, rather than to be pressed into the mold of the imaginary person that they are supposed to become. I point out that girls and boys have an equal right to want things and to get them, to learn the value of that magical and powerful word, NO, to set limits and to create respect, not only of the opposite gender, but sometimes of their own friends who may try to pressure them to do something that they do not feel is right.

    I teach that guilt simply means that they personally are doing something that is not right for them [though it might be okay for someone else] and that it only means do something else. That way even their mistakes can make them a better person.

    All of this is for the idea of maintaining control over their own lives.

  • Tanya Simone Simpson

    I started a creator account on Patreon recently and I love it! It inspires me to create more 🙂

  • bone&silver

    Such a good post; my girlfriend is thinking about starting a Patreon account for her comics; maybe I should do one for my blogs… it seems like everyone is doing it now! I hope it builds and builds for you

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