Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Donation Drive and Giveaway

As previously noted, every once in a while I have to ask for money.

Also, as previously noted, I don’t like doing this. But it is a necessary part of this business model.

Also, as previously noted, some people are deeply, deeply offended by this. Yes, they are, and they write me hatemail to tell me all about it or attack me on social media over it. However, despite the sneering criticism of certain vocal critics, it is possible for a writer to make a reasonably decent living this way. It’s not easy, and I wish there was another way to go about it, but an independent political writer can make a living this way.

Yes, writer.

Writer. Blogger. Essayist. Social media “influencer.” Whatever you want to call it. Eight hours a day, I put words together. I never intended this to become a profession. Well, I mean, I did, but not this. Not this way. See, I always wanted to be a writer, ever since I was a kid. My grandmother used to hand out books at Christmas and when I was about seven or so, she gave me a copy of The Hardy Boys #8, The Mystery of Cabin Island. I’d always loved words, and my mom used to read to me when I was little, Bolivar Shagnasty, Mike Mulligan and the Steam Shovel, Go Dog Go! I loved the pictures and the stories, but I’d never been much of a reader before The Mystery of Cabin Island. That book changed everything for me. I became a voracious reader. I read everything – particularly once I discovered this thing called a library where you could go and they’d just let you borrow whatever books you wanted. The Hardy Boys. Nancy Drew. The Bobbsey Twins. Adventure novels. Historical fiction. Ghost stories. And then one day on the way to the checkout desk I passed a rack of paperbacks. Ragged. Dog eared. Lurid. And right in the middle was this weird purple cover with this weird machine and a bunch of strange people kind of doing something around it, dancing? Working? Praying? I dunno. It was “Farmer in the Sky” by some character named Robert Heinlein. I knew that name. He wrote stories for Boys Life and as a scout I had a subscription. I picked it up and added to the pile and the librarian said, “you don’t want that.” Yeah, right, lady. She did eventually let me check it out and I discovered science fiction and whole new worlds opened up for me. The second science fiction book I ever read was Robert Silverberg’s “Time of the Great Freeze” and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I’d sit in class and dream about it, about a world in the grip of new ice age, about atomic cities under miles of glacier ice, men fighting their way from New York to London over thousands of miles of frozen sea. That story was, man, hell, I still think about it five decades later. Goddamn, science fiction grabbed my imagination like nothing else.

I never met Heinlein, but many, many years later I met Bob Silverberg. I shared a stage with him, in fact, the Hugo awards at the World Science Fiction convention. I got to talk to him afterwards. It was like talking to Walt Disney or Mark Twain, the people who created the dreams of your childhood. You have no idea what that meant to me. See, way back when, some time not too long after I discovered books, I suddenly realized that there was a whole class of people, somewhere, who wrote those things. People who were paid to daydream, to think up stories, put words together. They didn’t get yelled at and told to pay attention in class. They got paid for it (not a lot, as it turns out, but something anyway). Writers.

Other kids dreamed of being cops or firemen or doctors or astronauts. A writer though, well, a writer is all of those things and everything else. Adventurer. Actor. Teacher. Warrior. Pilot. Passenger. Spaceman. Sailor. Scientist. Citizen. Villain. Hero. Whatever their imagination can dream up.


People did that.

And that’s what I wanted to be.

I mean, I already had the daydreaming part down, how hard could the rest of it be, right?

Now, it used to be “writer” was defined as somebody who assembled words and ideas into books, short stories, articles, and perhaps screenplays, fact or fiction, and submitted those efforts via various means to editors at publishing houses or various presses or various media outlets, and then lived on cheese sandwiches hoping a check of some modest amount would come back. Traditionally the profession of “writer” meant you repeated this cycle without healthcare or adequate hygiene or presentable clothes until you died, or gave it up for a real job – both of which happened with distressing frequency.

Turns the rest of it was pretty hard. It’s work and a lot of it.

That model, that definition of writer, still very much exists.

And a lot of writers make varying degrees of living from it.

And that’s what I wanted to do. Ever since I was that kid, I’ve written down ideas. First laboriously by longhand, in notebooks. Then on an old typewriter. Then via generation after generation of personal computer. None of those doodles were very good. And I went off and did other things to make a living. But I always wanted to be writer.

When I retired from the Navy, I promised myself that I would do it. I’d sit down and get serious about it and I’d do it. So, the very day after I took off my uniform for the last time, I started a blog, this one. Stonekettle Station. I didn’t know what I was going to write, but I figured it was a way to teach myself the craft. I had no intention of making a living from this. None. I mean, who does that? (a few do now, but not back then). Hell, if I was lucky, maybe one or two people might even read it. But, I reasoned, if I worked at it every day, I could learn how to write the things people might read. Then I could, I dunno, something something book! My plan, admittedly, was a bit vague, but I figured I’d work it out as I went along.

Those early bits are pretty horrible. Pretty bad. Embarrassing even, some of them. I leave them up though, as a measure of how far I’ve come. Over time I came to realize that I’m unlikely to be another Heinlein or Silverberg. Whatever they had, have, that ability to create worlds whole cloth, I don’t. At least not the kind of refined ability needed crank out novels in volume large enough to actually pay the mortgage. I’ll keep at it, but it’s not what I’m good at.

Write what you know, that’s what they tell you. 

A lifetime in military intelligence and I know politics, ours and theirs, the military, war, conflict, and how to pull out the pieces and take the complexity apart into something others can understand. And somehow, that’s what I ended up doing, writing about politics for quarter of million people every day. It helped, I think, that social media was coming online just as I started doing this, Facebook, Twitter, that’s where my audience is.

And that’s the problem.

Nobody pays you to write about politics on social media.

Well, okay, nowadays, maybe they do – but it’s not the kind of thing I’m interested in, being the professional troll for some foreign nation or a shill for some media conglomerate or political party.

There’s no professional market for an independent political writer who spends most of his time on social media.

But, that’s where I am anyway. In that strange new middle ground.

Ten years ago, hell five years ago, I would never have guessed that Facebook would become my primary platform for day to day short form.  Facebook is a horrible platform for the kinds of things I write. It’s a bastard cross between a blog and public forum and doesn’t do either very well. It’s subject to arbitrary and random censorship. There’s no protection for intellectual property at all. It lacks the most basic of editing tools and formatting functions, its search capability is ridiculous and all but useless. Facebook’s interface, timeline management, and display are one of the single most infuriatingly horrible experiences in an age of limitless customization – limitless to everybody but Facebook users that is. It’s impossible to get any kind of help from the operators and it’s subject to every kind of cyber-abuse from bullying to trolling to sexual assault.

And yet – and yet -- it does one thing very, very well.

It does one thing that other technology cannot do, that traditional publishing venues cannot do.

Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and other social media platforms connect writers to people in an organic, viral, geometrically expanding manner that is completely impossible anywhere else and that has never existed before.

Now, interacting with readers on a real time basis for hours upon hours every single goddamned day isn’t for every writer.

Believe me.

It takes a certain degree of masochism to do it.

In point of fact, a lot of writers become writers because they are anti-social bastards who enjoy living on moldy fake-cheese sandwiches and sitting around all day in dirty pajama pants and who tend to break out in a cold sweat when they actually have to put on pants and go outside where all the other people are.

So real time interaction with their audience isn’t something they consider a feature.

And that’s okay.

“Writer” is a loose enough definition that it accommodates the gregarious right alongside the smelly hermit.

But, if you write well, if you write the things people are interested in, and if you’re willing to interact with your audience directly and in real time, then social media makes it possible for your work to spread far beyond the size of audiences normally available to traditional writers. For example: a few years ago, when I started doing this full time, Stonekettle Station averaged maybe 20,000 visitors per month on a good month – and that was after 8 years of writing every single day.  Maybe 3,000 people followed me on Facebook. Less than a 1000 on Twitter. Two years later, with some considerable effort, my daily Facebook audience exceeds 160,000 people per day for my personal page and the Stonekettle Station Group has grown to more than 30,000. There are another 100,000 followers on Twitter, and a single long form essay on Stonekettle Station can exceed 100,000 unique pageviews in a few hours.

Social media, for all its ills, has created new opportunity, an alternative to traditional writing models. Not a replacement, a supplement.

And that’s where I ended up. That’s where I exist.

I admit that in my case there is some degree of luck. I happened to be in the right place just as opportunity opened with the right experience and skillset and enough free time to take advantage of it.  It suits me. It’s not easy. Really it’s not. It sometimes (often) takes 14 to 18 hour days, research, writing, swearing at the screen, dealing with trolls and hatemail, it can be incredibly frustrating at times for reasons you never imagine or anticipate. It requires constant attention, a constant presence, and everything becomes grist for the mill, making much of your life public – something that is often less than thrilling to your spouse and your kids.

It can be dangerous. People threaten you, threaten violence, even death. Worse (yes, worse), they work to actively take you down, silence your voice, get you kicked off the platforms you’ve invested more than a decade in – and some of most persistent attacks in this regard come from, well, for lack of a better word, your own side.

It’s work.

Goddamn is it work.

I’ve been invited to a number of writers’ conventions to talk about this with other writers – or those who want to become writers under this new paradigm. That’s something I’m happy to do. I’ve been pretty lucky and I’m glad to pay that forward. The world is a big place, there’s plenty of room for many, many more writers in this new arena and I’m happy to help get them started. But, and this is real kicker, all those people, for me a quarter million readers a day, an audience that size would give a traditional writer some guaranteed income via the traditional means of agent, publisher, bookstore, publisher, check. But for me? There’s no such structure, no established methodology of turning words into income.

That structure is slowly evolving, I can see it happening, but it’s still nebulous and indistinct and for the moment it’s just me and you. Nobody in the middle. That’s both a good thing and a bad thing. And you know, if every one of those quarter million daily readers signed up for Patreon and donated a buck a month, well, I’d be writing this from the deck of my personal yacht. But unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way, and it’s probably better for us all that it doesn’t because I’d spend all my time lounging around that aforementioned boat like I was Betsy DeVos instead of, you know, writing.

There are other ways to do this, advertising is one of those models. But I look at sites covered in ads and I hate them. They actively drive me away. I ran ads here on the Stonekettle Station, but the increased revenue wasn’t worth seeing ads for things I adamantly don’t agree with on my website, shoved in front of my readers. I don’t want to use that model. So I opted out of the ads and removed them from my platform. I lost the revenue, but I get to keep my self-respect.

Likewise I find problems with other methodologies, specifically in that almost all of them would leave me beholden to various agencies.

So, I won’t do that either.

And every once in a while I need to ask for money.

I don’t like this.

But it’s necessary.

It’s necessary if I am to remain who I am and if I am to continue to write the things I write and that you come here to read.

But, and this is the important part, this way I am independent. I don’t owe anybody, no business, no agenda, no political party or ideology, no boss, I don’t owe any of them a damned thing.  I write what I write, be it long form, short Facebook posts, or a simple Tweet, to the very best of my ability and as I see it – not as somebody else has directed me to see it. I maintain my social media sites, my Facebook page and the Stonekettle Facebook Group, my Twitter feed, as independent entities, managed by me and me alone to my standards and not some corporate agenda.

It’s important to me. And it seems to be important to you, dear reader, and I take that responsibility seriously.

By remaining independent, I owe only you, the readers, the very best work I can put out and that’s it.

But it only works if you provide support.

I doubt I’ll ever get used to it, asking for money, even as other mainstream sites do it without any shame, and I’m not sure I want to.  That aversion always, every time, makes me more determined to improve, to work harder, to produce a better product for you and to expand opportunities for you to have your say, to interact, in a safe and intelligent forum.

So, here it is: I’m asking you to donate.

Because my business model is evolving, and because IRS regulations, state and federal laws, etc, all of these things impact this process, I tend to change things up every time, trying to find a way to accommodate the legal requirements with my own principles.

Here’s how I’m doing it this time:

The donation drive runs from August 1st until sometime in September.

I’m not sure exactly when I’ll end it. Let me explain why: I’m giving away stuff. Loot. Booty.


The last few times I did this, I waited until the end to hand out stuff. I’m not happy with that, for a number of reasons. So, this time, I’m going to give away prizes every day.

That’s right. Every day.

And so, the subscription drive will go on until I run out of things to give away.

I’ve got 50 Stonekettle Station pens. Some are worth $35, some are worth $100 or more. I’ll give one away every day until I run out and I might be making more while this process goes on. I’ve also got a stack of Alternate Truths – the best-selling political anthology which contains my short story: Gettysburg, AND the sequel: More Alternative Truths, which contains my vignette Doctor Republican’s Monster and my collaborative short, Moses. Every other day, I’ll give away a signed copy.

I may throw in some other Stonekettle Station items as the drive goes on, T-shirts, key chains, and so on.

If you donate starting today, I’ll throw your name in the hat. The sooner you donate, the fewer people there’ll be, the better your chance. Gifts will get mailed out every day. You don’t have to wait until the end of the drive, whenever that is.

To donate, click on the “Donation” button, either embedded in the text below or on the upper right side of this screen and follow the directions.

You may enter more than once. Each donation will be counted as a unique subscription.

If you’ve already donated to Stonekettle Station this month, you’re already on the subscription list.

Those of you who already donate via an automatic monthly payment, you’ll be entered automatically in the giveaway. (See the footnote below for additional information regarding automatic reoccurring donations)

Legal Disclaimer: To be clear, this is not a lottery or a raffle.  Donations are voluntary subscription fees specifically in support of this blog and the associated social media feeds and conducted in accordance with state and federal law.

That is:  you’re paying for content, not a chance to win something.

I use the word “donation” because that’s the name of the PayPal function. That said, I am not claiming any tax-exempt status or charity. Donations are considered business income and I pay all applicable state and federal taxes on that income and I have the records to prove it.

The items I give away are my intellectual property, created and paid for by me.  As such I chose to randomly gift them to supporters, just as I give away my custom made pens to my fellow writers.  The giveaway list is generated randomly from voluntary subscriptions, since I have no other way to determine who readers are.  You are not donating for a chance to win a prize, you’re paying for the content of this blog and my associated social media feeds and I’m using this opportunity to give something back other than just my usual blog essays, Facebook posts, and Tweets.

As always, thank you for your support.

Addendum: (updated as we go)

Aug 2: Chih Wen is today’s recipient of a Stonekettle Station Pen.
Aug 3: Hayley Hop and Karen Soule are today’s winners.
Aug 4: Craig Brankin is today’s winner.
Aug 5: James O'Malley wins today.
Aug 6: Anonymous
Aug 7: Chris Hull and Chris Hull – there were two Chris Hulls, I wasn’t clear regarding which was the winner, so, they’re both winners.
Aug 8: Anonymous
Aug 9: Jim Hudlow is today’s winner.
Aug 10: Anonymous
Aug 11: John Hanna is today’s winner.
Aug 12: Anonymous.
Aug 13: Anonymous and Kim Hallett are today’s winners.
Aug 14: Anonymous.
Aug 15: Wendy Halvorson is today’s winner.

*Reoccurring Payments: If you’ve set up a monthly donation via PayPal and you suddenly realize it’s been cancelled, that’s not me rejecting your money (because I would never do that. I need the money and I’m not too proud to say so). Likely it’s something to do with the PayPal process, usually your card has expired. I have no control over that.

* Pens. I will continue to produce pens for sale via my Etsy store per the usual process.


  1. Pfft, people who want to get shirty over a writer trying to make a living need to have reading material shoved where it'll do them some good. (In front of their eyes, preferably, but other spots will do if they're going to be jackasses.)

    Count me in. I want you to keep writing.

  2. If I donate and win, I only want something with copper on it because that's my favorite. Can we make deals like that? Well, that is unless it's something that doesn't have metal. Then I'll take whatever. I know, picky winner, but hey, I'm loyal.

  3. I just set up a Monthly... I've been following you for a while now on Facebook... Didn't realize that donating was possible until you linked this from your Facebook post.

    Happy to help support you, Sir.

  4. Donated $5 a month, wish I could do more but am a retired widow.

    I'm an Air Force brat(father career meteorologist); spent from Jan '63 through Jan '68 in Europe ~ first Franco's Spain (Torrejon) for 3 1/2 yrs (graduated from high school there), then Athens for 1 1/2 yrs - coup & counter-coup. I truly appreciate your military background critical thinking!

    Thank you for your voice of reason & sanity!

  5. From one struggling e-entrepreneur to another. It's only $3.75 USD/month ($5 CAD), but I hope it at least buys you a McD's coffee. If I ever manage to cover my bills, and maybe a wee bit more, I'll up to to enough to cover a decent shot of whisky.

  6. Worth every penny. Thank you for doing what you do. Many times, you make my day.

  7. Hey, if someone is already doing monthly donations, and kicks in an extra one, do they get two tickets in the hat?

    1. If you want a better country, you have to be better citizens. Simple concept, hard to do, but very much worth the effort.

  8. Are you set up on Patreon? It seems to handle monthly donations decently, and I'm more likely to donate monthly via Patreon than PayPal.

    1. Right tool bar says :

      "You can also contribute to this site by becoming a regular sponsor via Patreon"

      Hope that helps

    2. He is on Patreon - under Stonekettle. I'm one of his donors on that - small amount, but monthly.

    3. Cruise back up to the top and on the right side of the page, under Donate, you'll see a link to Patreon.

    4. I have a recurring donation set up through Patreon

  9. Jim, I don't think you ever get enough encouragement and thanks for the important writing you do. Important to me, at least. I clicked the button, intending to commit to a one-time donation, but at the last minute authorized PayPal to send some cash every month. Not a lot, but enough to make me feel that I've done something today for truth, decency, and the American way!

  10. I'm a writer who is mostly unpaid, so I get it. I have zero problems with what you're doing. You have probably covered this before and I missed it, but I'm curious if there has been interest in the traditional publishing market (ah, the smell of paper in a new book!) for a collection of your recent essays. I would guess a book of your work would have a decent audience, esp. in today's climate, although I know publishing one book isn't going to put you on that yacht.

    1. I always wonder about TV interviews
      Gosh, kim, if you were on TV it'd be amazing?!!

    2. I always wonder about TV interviews
      Gosh, Jim, if you were on TV it'd be amazing?!!

  11. Given what you’re willing to put up with from some of the yahoos out there, I wish you well and hope you continue to thrive. What you’re doing is extremely important to this country!

  12. Done!

    You make me laugh, Jim. I love your rants. So full of insight and I'm happy to be on your team!

  13. I've said it before, I'll say it again (and Jim said it in his post).
    ONE BUCK A MONTH. Surely everyone can kick in just one dollar a month. You can't even buy a candy bar for a buck and with Jim we get an almost endless bounty of chewy goodness every day. Come on folks, let's get Jim his yacht!
    Proud to be a monthly contributor. Thank you, Jim, for your hard work.

  14. You are a voice of reason, sanity and righteous indignation. Glad to chip in.

  15. Done.
    Thanks for your erudite commentary and wisdom.

  16. I've been reading your stuff since 2017. Have sometimes wished that I could have served with you when I was in the USN. May my small monthly sponsorship of your outstanding work contribute.

  17. I've been on the monthly plan for a while now. I wish it could be for more, but I do what I can. I have a healthy respect and admiration for your mind and appreciate your thoughts. Thank you.

  18. I’m already a monthly Patreon supporter but I wanted to warn you not to write from your yacht if you ever get as rich as Betsy DeVos. Someone will just untie it and set that bitch afloat in the Huron Boat Basin. (And also, why park a $40 million yacht on Erie, when your “house” is on Lake Macatawa/Michigan??)

  19. Ice Age Survival SF. I don't recall the name of the author or the author. But, I still remember the image seared in my mind of a family. Dad, Mother, Son, and I think a daughter. They were scrounging in a frozen city for the odd piece of coal and canned goods. And every day they huddled in a small contained area. A bathroom if I remember right. The narrator, the son, talks about staring at a beautiful woman frozen in ice permanently. That's the power of writing. I can still remember that story.

    1. A Pail of Air. Fritz Leiber.

    2. Wonderful story. It was most recently collected in Selected Stories by Fritz Leiber publish by Nightshade Books. Out of print now but there are lots of used copies out there - https://www.biblio.com/search.php?author=leiber&title=selected+stories&keyisbn=

    3. My husband first read that to me--"A Pail of Air", and it was an epp of X Minus One radio show, too. Damn, a good story! Mr. Wright-- so glad to find your writing continues to be sharp, and your research continues to be thorough. (That is the part you do when no one is watching--like the elder Vorkosigan says about honor.)

      What you do for me is remind me that, though the way I was reared to think about this country and her problems may be uncommon these days, my family is not alone in believing it.

      Struggling against the fall of night, striving to become a better part of a better country,


  20. Crazy Cat Lady donated, hope it helps!

  21. Could only afford small, one-time donation. Wish it could be more but hubby just lost his job and we have to figure out how we can afford to stay warm this winter. Just wanted to say how much I appreciate you. You brighten my days. Thanks for all you do to help keep me sane.
    p.s. I am not now, nor have I ever been, a robot.

  22. Please keep up the good work and fighting the good fight. I just posted a small donation. I've been donating the bare minimum through your Patreon account but I plan to start monthly donations via PayPal whenever I get back to work.

  23. Done, and with thanks for the entertainment that your writing brings.

  24. Sometimes - ok, most days - ok, EVERY DAY - you write something that puts into actual words the chaotic repetitive screaming that is happening in my head every time DJT tweets or someone mentions his name, which means pretty much CONSTANTLY. I would love to see you debate him, tho in truth you wouldn't even have to open your mouth; I would love to see him shrivel under your gaze as he does whenever he is in the presence of intellect and truth. I'm old & on a fixed income but you're a daily part of my mental health and always count me in.

  25. Is there a minimum Patreon amount required to be automatically entered into the draw?

    1. Nope. You donate via PayPal or Patreon, you're in the running.

    2. My fingers are crossed. Thank you for all you do.

  26. OK, I am resisting the temptation to make a large number of $0.01 donations. Better nation, y'know. Thanks for the work you put into the writing, Jim.

  27. Just signed up through Patreon. Thank you to your 7 yr old self for discovering books. Thank you for staying on FB despite the idiocy of the platform, since that's how I found you. Thank you for rejecting ads and staying independent, but most of all, thank you for writing.

  28. It's not enough for whiskey, but I can buy you a cheese sandwich every month. Thanks for all you do!

  29. Eh. I've already got two of the pens and one of the artist sketch pencils and copies of both books (though mine are unsigned) and you'll probably be getting my monthly subscription for the foreseeable future.

    Glad to pay it. If only because you are very good at putting into words what I am thinking. And you let me share those words, with proper attribution of course.

    If I win, I win. If not, I'm no worse off.

    Lay on, MacDuff!

  30. The god damned link in the email doesn't fucking work Jim

  31. My husband is not on FB, so every day he asks "What does that intelligent one have to say today?" And I know he means you. Tuesday mornings he meets up with some old customers of our little cafe (though now sold and retired) and loves to have his arguments/ammunition ready. Thank you for all of it, Jim Wright. You are a good man.

  32. Can I make a donation in Koa wood?

  33. If this too paltry a “donation” puts your stunning, righteous and RIGHT words in front of just one more reader, it will be worth more than all the yachts in the world.

    Well, no. Not really. But it will be a very good and worthy and readable and informative and right thing.

    Glad I discovered you a bit back. And glad to help. All the power, and a nice bit of the income, in the world to you, Jim.

  34. As a fellow struggling novelist (And artist) with nothing like your dedicated following, I have nothing but admiration for your work, your intelligence and courage. I will dig some funds out of my savings account and make a donation - and I don't mind getting nothing in return.
    M in NM

  35. Always happy to help. I have loved reading your work since I first discovered it, and I'm not sure how long ago that was. Every time you have a fund drive, I kick in. We need your dependable research, insights, thoughts and words now more than ever before. Thank you. -Martha Zimmerman

  36. Your pledge to defend this country did not send when you took off the uniform. You're still fighting the good fight with words. I'm glad to be able to make a monthly donation. It's worth it to keep you writing.

  37. I'm a big fan and devoted follower on FB. I sent $25 on your page....then took the jump to sign up on Patreon!! Keep up the good work and know that WE are working to be better citizen's and to bring about a better nation! Thanks from a bit south of you in the Swamp of Floriduh!

  38. Finally took the time to plug the numbers from the piece of plastic in my pocket into the link you provided. One-time event, but may make it recurring in the future. Thank you for a place of sanity that I am able to visit daily.

  39. Your long-form writing is some of my favorite internet content. Please keep up the good work.

    Mike L.

  40. Thanks for your doses of reason and sanity in an all too often unreasonable and insane world. Donated what I could to help you keep fighting the good fight.

  41. Paypal listed my donation as Arts and Crafts...now I have to explain to my wife that I'm not having some mid-life art fantasy...

  42. Jim, you're the best. I'm a fellow writer (mysteries) and a fellow Navy vet (1975-1983, yes, I'm in upper-upper middle age!)

  43. Thank you for expressing so well what the rest of us aren't talented enough to write. Plus you make fabulous pens. Just wish my donation were bigger, you've been earning it for a long time now.

  44. Good luck to ya. Buy some booze and pet the doggos.

  45. About Heinlein, did you ever read the short story "The Return of William Proxmire"? It was in the Heinlein tribute book Requiem. Highly recommend it to Heinlein fans!

  46. I'm one of your Patreon supporters, and I just bumped up my monthly. Love your work, and I do my best to get other people to read you.

    Also a SF fan of very long standing - starting with the "Space Cat" and "Mushroom Planet" books in early grade school, then on to the "Danny Dunn" series and quickly graduating to Asimov (both his fiction and his science essays) and many other "adult" SF writers.


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