When did it become okay not to pay artists? #entitled #PayArtists #elitist

I recently wrote a blog post about how little authors are paid enough as it is, and how lots of readers called authors ‘elitists’ for wanting to be paid for their work.

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And it seems like it’s not limited to books.

I watch YouTube. A lot, actually. I’ve got some YouTubers I follow, and watch their videos whenever they put them out, but there’s one I’ve followed for a long time, and he’s my favorite. I’m talking, of course, about Markiplier.

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Recently, he started a sponsor program where, for 5$ per month, members have access to little goodies. Most people were fine with this until he recently released the blooper video for his latest Wilford ‘MOTHERLOVING’ Warfstache. Holy hell, Twitter exploded when he announced this.

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People were basically saying it was unfair to those who were poor not to have access to this video. Unfair. Let that sink in. Because they can’t afford something and are poor, they should still get it, despite that other people do pay for it, but would get the same. Seriously? That’s like me walking into a store, and saying “I can’t afford a Nintendo Switch, but this person over there just bought it. It’s not fair, and I want it too, but I’m too poor, so just give it to me.” People even had the audacity to say Mark was ‘splitting’ up the community.

 

Are you kidding me? Of all people in the world, the last person to want to split this community is Mark. If you truly believe that’s what he’s doing, then you haven’t been around long enough to get to know him through his videos. The one thing he wants (and he’s said this several hundred times) is to bring the community we built together closer, and to do more things together. Yes, he’s well-off (his words, not mine), but he also explained how big video projects like Who Killed Markiplier was made at a loss of 100,000$. But he still made it for the fans – for us! By having sponsors, EVERYONE can enjoy these awesome projects, and those who are members are helping him make that happen – shouldn’t they get a bit of extra content? He’s been giving us video after video, year after year, month after month for years without asking anything in return. Yes, YouTube pays him, but we get this content for free (except for our internet connection – but it’s not like we pay extra like with Netflix). And now that we want more of these projects, he started sponsoring, and people are complaining.

Since when did it become okay not to pay artists?? Mark has every right to get paid for what he does. Not to mention, it’s not just him! He pays the people who make these projects with him! And if you think it’s fair for him to lose money every time he does one of these awesome videos, then you’re what’s wrong with the world. We want this entertainment – YouTube videos, books, etc. – but some people don’t want to pay for it? It doesn’t work that way. When you work, you get paid. Why should it be any different for artists?

I’m not a sponsor (yet) just because I had to take a reduction in hours, so it’s a bit tight. But I definitely plan on sponsoring soon. For those who can’t, be it your age, budget, not available in your country, etc., that’s fine. Just as Mark promised, everyone will keep getting videos. But for those who are members and paying a fixed amount of their own money every month, why shouldn’t they get a little extra? And Mark definitely deserves the financial support considering the amounts of money he pours into these videos just for us.

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Support artists. Sponsor them when you can. Buy their works. Don’t download illegally. Don’t wait for a sponsor to upload the members-only videos and watch it. And stop thinking that because you can’t afford something (be it a video or a book) that you’re entitled to it anyway.

Thanks!

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I am not an elitist #oceanofpdf #entitlement #thieves #author

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Ah, good old piracy. It seems to have gotten easier to steal books ever since they went digital. Don’t get me wrong; I like being able to buy and read eBooks directly on my phone because it’s with me wherever I go, so I always have something to read. But it’s a lot easier to steal an eBook than a physical copy, so to some extent, sometimes I wish eBooks would disappear just for the pirating part of it.

Oceanpdf was shut down – if you don’t know what this is, it’s a website that had thousands of books available to download for free, stealing from authors. But when they were shut down, the thieves actually had the nerve to complain, stating they couldn’t afford the books (it’s the price of a Starbucks coffee for most…), and that authors should just give away their works because we should be grateful for having readers in the first place. Apparently, we’re elitists for wanting to get paid for our work. And if we’re writing for any sort of monetary gain, we’re writing for the wrong reasons.

Here’s the thing: in order to keep writing, one needs to get paid for it. Authors who want to get paid for their work have EVERY RIGHT to get paid. And people throwing the whole “I volunteer, so yes, I work for free.” well, it’s great you can do that, but it’s not the case for most of us. And it’s your choice: if you want to volunteer your time and not get paid, then fine. But don’t expect everyone to do it, and it doesn’t make you a saint and it doesn’t make us elitists. It’s expensive to publish a book. Those who self-publish, it’s even more expensive! But however you publish, unless you’re with one of the big fives, you’re probably marketing your own book, and that can carry pretty hefty fees.

A few months back (January, to be precise), I wrote a blog post about downloading book illegally. So I thought I’d update since it’s been a little over a year since my first book was published. I have Blasty, so I’m aware of websites that have my book available for illegal downloading, and here are the figures from July 2017 to July 2018:

Legal downloads: 67 copies (87.78$USD)

Legal print copies: 5 copies (56.99$USD)

Illegal downloads/read online: 12,387 (*27,870.75$USD)

*I calculated at an average of 5$ per copy.

Reviews/Ratings from readers: 22

Average stars: 4.35

Oh yes – I’m definitely an elitist. And think about this as well: even if I had gotten all that money from the downloads and online readers, it’s still a pretty low yearly salary. But it would have helped considering that in one year since my book was published, I’ve spent 936$, but actually made 144.77$. Oh yea, that’s me being a real greedy bitch right there. How dare I want to make a living off writing? I should just give away all my books for free while working my day job until I eventually have to stop writing because my day job is too stressful and takes all of my mental energy away. I’ve found ways to write around it (I wrote a blog post about it), but I won’t be able to keep it up forever.

If you don’t think my book is worth buying, then don’t read it – it’s really that simple. Or you can always follow me on Twitter or Facebook and whenever it’s available for a lower price, then buy it then (I’ve had 0.99$ and 2.99$ specials). If 5.99$ is too high, and you really, really want to read it and can’t wait for it to come out – maybe skip your next coffee run in the morning? Save up and buy it? If I really, really want a PlayStation 4, I don’t get to walk into Best Buy, take it off the shelf, and walk out the store without buying it. You think the courts are going to accept a “I’m poor and can’t afford it, but I need it to play Final Fantasy XV.“? Yeah… no. It’s not going to fly.

So why should it when it comes to books?

Signed,

Not an elitist author.

 

 

Writing and the Day Job

Ah, the day job. Necessary for most authors because let’s face it: you rarely get six-figure advances for publishing books nowadays. You’re lucky if you even get an advance, period! So, a day job becomes something of a necessity unless you’re lucky and you have a partner who makes enough income. And let’s be honest, in this day and age, single incomes barely pays much (I know because I’m single income lol).

So this means what? It means less writing time. You work six to eight hours per day, get home, and you’re so mentally exhausted that the idea of even opening your word document is draining. You stare at the page – maybe there’s a few words written – but your eyelids droop and you close it, giving up before you ever really started. It’s hard. And the worst part? While you’re working, you get all these ideas – all the words are flowing through your mind, you can even see the scene you plan to write as soon as you get off work. But when it’s time, there’s just no energy left.

When I first started my job, working 40 hours per week, I worked, ate, and slept. That’s it. No more writing because despite finishing at 4:00pm every day, I’d get home, eat, and pretty much go to bed right away. I was constantly exhausted. Not just tired, but pushed past my rope like all the life was drained out of me. I started feeling depressed, unable to write. My first book had just been published, and I felt my author career vanish before it even started. What if I could never write another book again because I was tired all the time?

Eventually, my job turned so stressful that I took a reduction in hours. Like my doctor said, financial stability is nice, but if you’re too stressed out and depressed to enjoy it, what’s the point? So I started working 30 hours a week instead. Less money every month, but still doable. But I was still coming home so mentally drained. Finishing at 2:00pm helped, but it was more the reduction of not being ‘on’ as long, more than anything else. I couldn’t seem to see a light at the end of this horrible job. I continued applying to other positions, hoping to change to something where I’d be less monitored on time constantly, but nothing changed.

Until it did.

But not really. I just changed certain things. I learned to work around my exhaustion. Every morning, I carpool, and so, I got to work usually 45 minutes (if not a full hour) before my shift actually started. Now, don’t get me wrong: I’m tired when I get to work at 7:00am, waiting for my 8:00am shift to start, but I’m not exhausted. There’s a big difference. I’m tired because I don’t sleep well, but I’m not yet mentally exhausted. So I pushed myself and decided every morning, I’d write one paragraph in my manuscript. Nothing too big. Just one paragraph, however long it needed to be. But once I’d write a paragraph, it would turn into a full page. And then I’d slowly start waking up, and I was able to write more and more. I have three 15-minute breaks throughout the day, and I use those to write as well.

Now, I write a minimum of one chapter every day, Monday to Friday (and more during the weekend). Sometimes they’re shorter chapters (around 1,000 words), but lately, if I use my breaks well, I can get two or three chapters done, and all together, it’s around 3,000 to 5,000 words before my day job ends.

It’s not an easy task to write and work a day-job, but it is possible. Keep hope, and I’m sure you’ll find your own way to integrate writing into your busy life! 🙂

HAWK by @AuthorLynnBurke

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Hawk
Fallen Gliders #2
Publisher: Evernight Publishing

Artwork: Jay Aheer, Simply Defined Art
Projected Release Date: July 26, 2018

ASIN: B07FW6FVYQ
Keywords: MC Romance, Contemporary, Erotic, May/December

*Be warned: Spanking, anal sex

As a member of the Fallen Gliders, bad boy biker Hawk Richards tends to use his fists first and has fucked his way through the club whores. Life has been a never ending supply of bikes, women, and beer. When his brother hands in his colors, Hawk is sworn in as the new Sergeant at Arms and struggles to find meaning in the club and his existence. Until her.

Janie is curvy as fuck and the sweetest thing Hawk has ever seen. The young woman with the joy of life in her eyes is everything he’s been missing, everything he’s ever wanted. When the little butterfly falls into his arms, he wonders if someone might finally look beyond his ink and reputation to see the man hiding underneath.

Janie’s life has always been a roller coaster, and even though she’s flying high with Hawk, she knows a crash is inevitable. The last thing she wants is for him to be burdened with picking up the pieces. But how can she resist him? His touch makes her burn, and every minute in his bed intensifies her craving for more.

Can Hawk convince Janie he wants her for the long haul, or will the secret she keeps tear him from her side forever?

 

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EXCERPT

We’d been in Sturgis for almost a week, and I hadn’t fucked a single woman. My outlook on life sucked the previous couple of months, to the point the thought of having my cock shoved down a willing throat or burying myself balls-deep in some random cunt didn’t even twitch my dick. I felt like a wind-blown leaf with no sense of purpose, no desire for sex or companionship. I’d taken to drinking harder stuff than my usual beer but knew the slump I floundered in wouldn’t end well unless I decided to pick my ass up and figure out my life.

Perhaps today’s the day, I told myself, picking up the shot of whiskey our waitress sat in front of me.

A flash of red-brown hair drew my gaze to the far left before I could pop out the toothpick and down my drink. A little butterfly with gray-green eyes flashing along with her wide smile. Dimple, full lips, high cheekbones—a fucking model in a tight tank and Daisy Dukes.

My cock thickened inside my leather pants, and my head turned as she slowly passed by the picture window, her face animated and lips moving as she chatted with her friends, the joyful gleam in her eyes snaring me tight. She radiated life, an exuberant, light step while I wallowed in my shit life.

Jealousy and yearning for what she experienced clenched my chest, and I found myself rubbing a hand over tattooed pecs I spent hours sculpting on a daily basis.

The little butterfly passed beyond the window, and I sat back, not realizing I’d leaned forward to keep her in sight.

“Finally see something worth fucking?” Jonny asked with an elbow to my ribs.

“Fuck, yeah. Reddish hair—not the dyed kind—and tits out to here,” I said around my toothpick, holding my hand out a few inches away from my chest. “Young and full of life.”

One of Jonny’s eyebrows rose. “What the fuck you sitting here for?”

I hesitated to glance around the group of men—fellow Fallen Gliders from across the States, discussing the lighter aspect of business. A large meeting had taken place the night before, the heads of the chapters sitting down to discuss the future of our club. Just more depressing shit to pile on life.

“Go on,” Jonny encouraged, elbowing me again.

I hopped off my stool and pushed my way through the crowd for the front door. At six-foot-five, I had no trouble seeing over most of the heads bobbing to my right as I stepped out onto the sidewalk.

The roar of mufflers and cranking music from Christ knew where filled my ears as I breathed in the scents of exhaust, sweat, and cheap perfume in the night air. I took a half-dozen steps to the right, scanning the crowd of people on the sidewalk in front of me before pulling up short. No fucking way I was going to find her unless I acted like an asshole and shoved people out of my way while hurrying the way she’d gone.

Curses flew from my lips while I turned back toward the bar. A voice in my head sang a country hit, reminding me that if we were meant to be, it’d be.

“No fucking luck?” Jonny asked as I slumped back onto the stool.

My scowl sufficed for an answer.

Tipping back my head for the whiskey burn didn’t help my shit mood. Neither did the bloody burger and pile of fries fifteen minutes later. Thoughts of the little butterfly warred with depression in my mind, and I called it an early night, leaving my brothers behind. The quietness of the hotel didn’t offer anything but a hot shower where I could blow the load that had been building in my balls for weeks.

At least I had a semi-purpose … find the vivacious little butterfly and steal some of her joy in life for myself.

© Lynn Burke 2018

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Sign up for Lynn’s Newsletter, and read the ENTIRE first chapter of Hawk AND enter to win an ecopy of Nicky, FG #1!

Other books in this series: Nicky, Fallen Gliders #1

ABOUT LYNN BURKE

Lynn Burke is a full time mother, voracious gardener, and scribbler of spicy romance stories. A country bumpkin turned Bay Stater, she enjoys her chowdah and Dunkin Donuts when not trying to escape the reality of city life.

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A Love Story through Facebook messenger: Creep

I try to give people the benefit of the doubt when they reach out on Facebook messenger. Some turned out to be fans of my book, and since I always love connecting with readers, I don’t automatically deny the request. But this is exactly why I always have my doubts about accepting any kind of request.

This story starts with Brian P Coleman who sent me a wave on messenger. I waved back, a bit weary of whether this was some sort of ‘I saw your picture and thought you were so beautiful’ crap. I usually let them know at that point that they haven’t seen the rest of my body, but it depends on the situation lol

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After this, there was a bit of silence, and I thought that was the end of it. It seemed pretty clear cut on my end. But I guess I wasn’t obvious enough in my rejection. So when he continued texting me, I decided to fuck with him a bit. He was fucking with me, so I figured why not have a fun fuckfest!

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I started small. Just calling him out on one particular point.

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But he guessed wrong! *Le Gasp!* I just turned 30, so obviously, I had to get insulted because that’s what needs to happen, right?

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You know what they say about guys who say they’re nice/good… Yeah, exactly lol

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I had to bring out the tears at this point. I mean, he just didn’t understand at what point it hurt me, as a lady, for him to keep asking my age. Like he didn’t care about me, just the number of years I’ve lived. How dare he?!

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He worried me so much, asking me to reply right away, I actually had to use Tobey Maguire’s spiderman cry reaction gif. Now that’s serious right there!

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And here I was, all worried for nothing! How dare this man send me into a tizzy! I’m a fragile woman, after all!

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My attitude was returning at this point. He deserved my sass because ain’t nobody got time for liars! I just couldn’t believe the nerve!

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I was torn between crying and throwing my work computer out the window now. He was still treating me like my age was the most important thing to him. Like I didn’t matter as a woman with needs.

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So I brought out the big guns: the nag. Most powerful weapons women have are our vaginas and our nagging, so considering I was at work, and taking a photo of my vajayjay was a no-go, I went with the nag! And it seemed to have finally worked!

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Now it was time to find out information about him that I really, really was dying to know. What were his insides like? The color of his stomach, the smell of his liver. But I had to start slow, so I asked a simple question about his insides, and yet, he still couldn’t even answer that. It was like texting with a bot!

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Calling me baby got me all hot, so I continued on. But suddenly, he wasn’t answering me anymore. I just couldn’t understand why. I had to jump to the first possible conclusion: he decided I was not beautiful enough for him. This almost caused me to slam my face into my desk, but I waited… patiently.

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It hurt so much, being ignored like this. And for this reason? How dare he?!

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So I made sure to bring out both Tobey and Jack Black to back me up. No way would I get wooed by a misogynist twice my age! I just wouldn’t have it!

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After this, I had to accept that my reaction was a bit harsh. I mean, the man does dangerous work and needs to focus! I can’t be his only priority – it wouldn’t be fair!

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And so, moving on, I had a big problem with this new relationship. He promised love and devotion, but how would we make it work living two countries apart? I asked if he’d become a Canadian citizen, but wanted to be realistic about the time and money it took to get to that. But then he said I could come to the U.S. now…

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It’s not that I hate the U.S., it’s just that I hate it right now because of Trump. Before that, I was just indifferent to it. I have many American friends that are dear to me, but the country itself? No thank you. I like my free healthcare and I’m against the second amendment, so I just can’t see myself moving there.

 
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After that, he stopped answering. I think this may already be the end to our relationship, but I’ll ask all of you: do you think our love can last?

MY LIFE TO TAKE

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I am so excited to announce I signed a contract for my second published book with Evernight Publishing! This is the sequel to my first book, MY SOUL TO GIVE, and follows the story where the first one left off.

I’ll post more details as I have them – I’m really looking forward to seeing what the cover art is going to look like since Jay Aheer creates such beautiful artworks!

This one is a bit shorter, and is a paranormal romance! Can’t wait to share it with everyone! 🙂