wow many people are saying the boost house kickstarter is asking for “hand-outs” or asking people to simply “pay my rent,” or calling it a “scam”… but i understand it as veryyy similar to how i’ve been making money for the past two years. we are trying to be a cooperatively run business, providing stuff that people find valuable in exchange for money. most of the kickstarter rewards are just preorders : books + shirts + live shows (with a couple fun extras for ppl who WANT something wacky)… people are saying “get a job,” but this is a job, a meaningful job.
i’ve been very lucky to find ways to make money as a poet, and it’s allowed me to spend all-day everyday on this important work that i love.. i don’t feel bad about making money from it, because i know it’s helping a lot of people for me to do this work full-time. even if the BH kickstarter was purely “donations” i actually wouldn’t feel bad about it, i’ve been accepting donations on paypal (mainly from my mom and John Demmitt) for years, because i know i’m using the money for good. i work nearly constantly on things i believe in, i only buy what i need to survive + cheap dates with my girl friend + somtimes i donate $6.66 for someone’s ebook if i believe in them. i dont have anything to hide financialy, i have $33k in student debt and $4k in credit card debt, im not getting rich i’m just trying to find ways to spend my #rare time alive doing what i believe in.
our world can make it very hard to do the work that matters.. most other people doing awesome posi work are not gona be as savvy as i am at internet marketing it, or they may have other big restrictions on their success.. so Boost house is a way for me to share the position i’ve arrived at. i want to provide shelter and food (and in the future, income/stipends) for a set of people who i think are doing great work to boost the world, so they can do more of it. and i want to promote / publish many more people beyond that, i want to help build support for many leaders conected in a community, not just promoting myself
i could have raised the same amount of money without a kickstarter by just releasing a set of books up front and doing a tour of colleges, maybe i should have done that. most of the same people would’ve bought the books anyway, so wat’s the difference? maybe it’s just because people can see the total kickstarter amount at the top of the page, all in one place. idk people have such bitter and intense feelings about money/art.. i’m sensitive to a lot of money/art concerns, but people have gut reactions that go beyond rational criticism.. when we made ~ $60 of donations from “the most posi night in the world” and the celebs didnt show up, people were like, “i want to know where the money is going!!” .. which, yeah we messed up with that event.. but it was only ~ $60, and $50 of that was from john demmitt !! the patron saint of alt lit god bless him !!
realy friends, addresing these criticisms is part of a bigger issue for me if im honest.. im sory this post is long but many of u appreciate when i talk openly about these things
basicly i think i need to accept that im gona get more criticism as i get more popular, no matter what im doing.. and it’s not a bad sign.. can’t please everyone.. even as i focus more on helping others/social good, or maybe especially as i focus on that, public critiicsm is escalating.. its now ‘cool’ to insult me on twitter i think ? most of it comes in waves after big press coverage. tomorrow im gona be covered on a realy big website and im kinda scared. i’m not realy that “tough-skinned” naturaly, i’ve discussed the importance of confidence in response to haters, but i stil struggle to cultivate it myself.. it’s difficult to brush off “haters” when you want to stay responsive and accountable to the more legit criticisms
somtimes it’s tempting to just pursue a version of this career that is more “low key” ? like, people wouldn’t say i’m bad and publicly post about how i’m bad and try to convince others i’m bad if i just kept it to myself and my friends more.. but i want to help make big change, i think scale matters, i don’t wana run away from criticism or stay complicit and small while the world is so fricked up.. maybe standing in the path of criticism is necessary
anyway last thing, it’s been very encouraging that some of the people i admire most in the world have affirmed me, voiced suport for boost house, or defended me in recent comment threads.. that means a lot to me, thank you so much friends.. im very glad i’ve built all these friendships and got to know all these amazing people in the process of doing this work.. it seems obvious now ,but i didn’t foresee that it would be the best part