What I want, as a writer, isn’t for someone to tell me their One True Way to be successful at what I do, or the Best Way To Write A Novel, etc etc etc.
The world is FULL of people offering that. And I’m not knocking anyone who sells that, or who wants to consume it! You do you, boo. I can’t determine or decide what you best need in your journey as a writer.
What I’ve noticed, though, is that there are so many products and communities built around people who haven’t written their first book/story yet. The other one I see is centered on those who have something written but haven’t sold it yet. They’re both valid communities to serve, with lots of people who need that direction.
But that’s not me.
First, I don’t want to be “sold” anything.
If I choose to buy a class or a program, it’s because I found it on my own while looking for a solution. I don’t want to be marketed to, and I don’t want to have to pay a ton of money to people who often I can’t even find credentials for. I choose classes from established authors or editors that I know and respect. I am extremely picky because my money as a working author is hard earned and scarce!
What I really want is a community.
I want a community of like-minded people who are sharing their experiences honestly and candidly, so we all can learn from each other. I want people who are traveling a similar path and who are ready to cheer or console or advise each other as needed or wanted. I want us to support each other with our time and money as needed and as we can afford to, without any pressure or, goats forbid, marketing.
And I want it in a container that feels safe and welcoming and nurturing.
Is that too much to ask?
When I started posting on Ko-Fi about my own journey as a writer under the title A Writer’s Life and Craft, I made it a paid tier because a. I am poor and need money, and b. my experiences are worth something and it does take time and energy to write about them. I set the price as an affordable one because, well, see “a” – I understand that lots of us are poor. I want to reach people like me, who aren’t adverse to supporting folks who are sharing their hard-won experiences, but don’t have a lot of money to spare.
I even set up a Discord for my Ko-Fi, with separate spaces for readers and writers. I was hoping a community would build there, but it’s mostly a ghost town. I’m sure in part it’s because people who aren’t Ko-Fi supporters don’t know about it. I want a community to grow organically, just like support for what I do has done.
But with that being said, how do I carefully nurture and build what I want to see in the world? If I build it, will you come?