Okay, so, even in this short month I’ve had over thirty thousand unique visitors to the modernevil.com domain. Around a thousand people a day comes to the site. Why do zero of you buy anything?
You don’t buy books or audiobooks or poetry or short stories or comics or merchandise … thirty thousand visits to the site, zero of them involve any sort of monetary transaction.
Okay, Zoe, I know you buy stuff when you can, but I’ve known you for over a dozen years now. We’re good friends. You’ll probably buy the board game I designed (most of) today, when I make it available later. Your help is appreciated, you know that, right? I’m not talking to you.
I’m talking to the other … at least thousand people, perhaps up to thirty thousand people, who have visited my site this month.
Really, even if it was just the thousand or more who visit every day, visiting again and again and again, and one tenth of one percent of them bought one 2cent thing via BitPass, that would at least be two cents the site had earned this month. But I haven’t even got two cents this month.
Not even two cents.
If not one of you, out of over a thousand (and perhaps much more), is willing to donate or spend any money at the site, perhaps I’ve got the wrong audience. I need to find the audience where one in a thousand doesn’t support the site financially. Something about finding an audience has always eluded me, though.
I’ve never been able to write much with an audience in mind. I know that people, most any people, would like what I write – my short stories, my novels, and even most of my online journal entries here. The only audience I could really think of is … sort of ovbious. People who like to read short stories like my short stories. People who like to read novels like my novel. People who like to read online journals like my online journal. But how do I connect with them? And how do I get them to open their wallets?
How do I market a novel to “everyone who likes to read novels”? Where do I advertise, what do I say? I mean, I know that if they read it with an open mind they’ll like it. But how do I get that across?
Too many people claim to have something people will like inaccurately; most people don’t trust strangers’ advertising claims. They trust the claims of trusted sources, but not strangers. So how do I get the trusted sources to read it? How do I get the New York Times editorial staff to read it, or the Entertainment Weekly staff to read it, or anyone else to read it, for that matter? And once they’ve read it, how do I get them to recommend it? Seriously. Anyone know?
If I did, my book would already be popular.
I’m not a marketing … person. I’m not a business person or an advertising person or anything like that. I’m just the creative guy who put the product together. All by my lonesome.
I couldn’t get people interested enough to read my novel, even when I was offerring it for free, and certainly not now that it costs money. That makes me feel rejected and just as worthless as all thirty thousand of you are saying my novel is. And my short stories are. And my poetry is. And my comics are. And all of it. Worthless. Not even worth a quarter, which you would probably gladly give to a panhandler on the street, you won’t give to me in exchange for entertainment.
I’m sad, I feel worthless, and I’m going to bed.
Perhaps tomorrow I’ll think of an audience who has money, and a way to get it from them. My problem (as far as I can tell) has never been finding an audience; plenty of people like my art, my stories, my comics… they just happen to be the people who can’t afford to pay for them. And the sort of people who can afford it, they’re the ones who don’t appreciate my creations.
Clearly, I am a financial failure.
I wish I could just give up.