Years ago, after I graduated from university with a degree in History, I thought I was going to enjoy a lucrative career as a print journalist. I freelanced for a number of magazines and newspapers in hopes of getting a full-time writing job. Sadly, freelance writing just wasn’t going to pay the bills.
The Internet was just taking off and based on the encouragement of my then boyfriend, a computer science graduate, I taught myself HTML (that was the HOT programming language of the day), and launched a magazine online. I started making money off of ads that were running on my digital magazine. Plus, I got A LOT of media coverage because of my “innovation.” Little did I know that one action - launching an online magazine - would open the door to an exciting career in technology. After I got a job at a web development company, I gave up on my dream of being a full-time writer.
Fast forward to 2016. I was growing tired of the tech world. My brain is getting old and trying to keep up with all the new programming languages was taking a toll on my peace of mind. Plus, it’s incredibly exhausting trying to navigate a male dominated field as a woman. Although I had won a number of awards for my innovations in tech, managing software development projects and Internet marketing campaigns didn’t hold my interest any longer. I didn’t know what was next, but I just knew that it was time for me to “retire” from the world of tech.
On January 3, 2017, I woke at 4:30am to write a book of fiction. It had been a dream of mine and I felt that waking early, before the demands of the day distracted me, would be a great time to write. I woke at 4:30am to write for 365 consecutive days. The first few weeks, I focused on writing content for the book. Eventually, I abandoned the book, and instead, used those early morning writing sessions to heal me. It appears the character I needed to develop and explore was myself.
In October 2017, I wrote a blog post that went viral. The blog post contained self-reflective questions I had used during my early morning writing sessions to help unpack unconscious biases. On the advice of another Patreon creator, I leveraged the attention and launched my own community on Patreon. I was still running my digital marketing company at the time and I had no clue what Patreon would do for me. I simply listened to my friend since he was having success with Patreon.
Today, I’m a well-fed independent writer with over 750+ patrons. I research and write and research and write all damn day because of my patrons. I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE my life. This is EXACTLY what I dreamed of doing all those years ago as a new university graduate. It only took 20-years - and being diverted by the lucrative field of technology - to bring me back to my gift. My first love. Writing.
I could NOT be a well-fed writer if it weren’t for Patreon. My transition from being a “digital diva” to independent (and not freelance) writer would not have been possible if it were not for Patreon. Like, how do I count the ways?
TL;DR: Skim the text that’s been BOLDED