Today was the Bruncheon at the Out of the Blue Drill Hall in Leith, Edinburgh. Since we’re getting the zine printed there now we have a good relationship with them and I was looking forward to it, but I didn’t realise how much of a relief it would be after the last few days to get back to my… proper job.
I make a zine. A zine that people support. A zine that people read and like and contribute to. We had more than 80 backers for our Kickstarter earlier in the year and there’s almost 10 people supporting us on Patreon now. These are not meaningless numbers. I am so grateful to each and every person who buys and reads our zine. Okay, so I don’t make a very good living through this work – but it’s pretty amazing that I’m making any sort of living at all.
Over the past week I had my first taste of being something close to employable again and I didn’t want it. I don’t need a job. I HAVE a job. THIS is my job. It’s not selfish or arrogant to think I can do this full-time. It’s going well. Statistically. Clearly. Feedback is good. Sales are good. So I don’t make a lot of money. Boo fucking ho. Who gets to decide what a ‘real’ job is anyway?
People seem to like Artificial Womb. That’s… incredible. I’m pretty fucking proud of it too. Alfie’s illustrations are improving every day and the quality of the content people are sending in is high. This is valid. It’s a valid next step in my career: unpaid intern, junior reporter, magazine editor. That’s not crazy. That’s a perfectly normal C.V.
I just feel like I’ve been apologising a bit lately and its time to stop. Who says I can’t run a monthly zine? The growth is really managable, especially in terms of the Patreons. I picked up a new zine today to stock on the Etsy shop and to send to the $5 subscribers. That was work.
I guess I’m still a bit defensive. But I can do this. I’ll go into the office tomorrow and have a good sort through all the orders on backlog from this week. Then I’ll mail them on Monday with the money I earned at the Bruncheon Print Fair today. That’s how a business works. One day I may even be able to pay myself too.
So we’re poor. So we get housing benefit. We’re still working. I’ve made a recovery. I’m back in full-time work after a nervous breakdown. This is my job. It pays for itself and it will one day soon pay my rent. I don’t need anything else to do. I’m employed already. By me.