On Writing

14 Responses

  1. JonK says:

    Another great and welcome post Neil. Happy New Year to you both from me and her.

    One question we asked ourselves and wanted to put to you both:

    Why are you in a marina? Is it a necessary evil to make life bearable, or to facilitate your writing. I imagine (I have to imagine, you know that I’ve not experienced any of this yet) that marina-life is a double edged sword – good company and plenty of activity, relative ease of living, versus close neighbours, no privacy and it’s expensive.

    It just seems an obvious option to me to make money last longer is to anchor out. I’m sure I’m being naive and simplistic, or just plain rude, but maybe I’m missing one of the fundamental attractions or necessities of marina living.

    Money whilst cruising is a subject that very few bloggers talk about as frankly as you have, so thank you for broaching the subject, as I’m sure it is the Number One concern for everyone reading and contemplating this lifestyle. I know it is ours.

    Thanks again

  2. NeilH says:

    Great question Jon, not rude, naive nor simplistic. I should have explained our decision better. I’ll put that right next time out. Cheers

  3. Chris says:

    Keep them coming.

  4. Paul says:

    You have a talent for writing books Neil. I’m looking forward to reading your future books. Some fantastic tales and some still to happen. Keep writing for us armchair sailors. I love reading your posts. I hope 2017 has many adventures for you. All the best and keep writing.

  5. Tsunamichaser says:

    Hey Neil! I just ordered ‘Foolish Voyage’ from Amazon. Deep winter here in the Pacific Northwest so a good read will get me closer to spring. I look forward to your book on building Gleda. Still bummed I didn’t make it over to the launch.

  6. Cynthia and Jean-Paul says:

    This site (in French) could be a source of inspiration.
    Banik.org is very popular with French-speaking sailors community. They sailed during 10 years round the world and financed their project by publishing articles, videos and valuable technical information. Partially free and partially by subscription.


  7. NeilH says:

    Hey Cynthia & JP Bonne année!
    Great to hear from you and thanks for the link. I’ll be checking it out for ideas.

  8. Andy says:

    Have you checked out Patreon. I sponsor about 5 or 6 sailing creators. Mostly the release videos on a schedule every week or two, and you can sponsor them. Normally different levels of sponsorship with free gifts or other bonuses as the price per piece of content goes up. Check out “sv delos” and “sailing la vagabond” for ideas. If you don’t want to make videos, maybe have your content be a piece of writing, say an unedited chapter from a book. I generally do about $2 per piece of content with a max of 2 or 3 times per month per creator, many people do much more.

    Personally, I would be more than happy to pay $5/month to read a chapter or two of a book you were working on, and then I expect I would also buy the finished product for $10 or whatever it is.

  9. NeilH says:

    Hi Andy
    Thanks for the Patreon suggestion. I knew it existed and I’ve watched more than a few of the SV Delos vids.To be honest I figured video was probably the only way to go with Patreon and I don’t have the skills for that, but you’ve given me some other ideas. I know there are generous folks out there. I’ve gratefully received donations from more than a few in the past. I haven’t forgotten them. It’s strange, I have no qualms about selling my words on Amazon but feel a lot of resistance to asking my faithful blog readers for money. On the few occasions I’ve done it I felt bad. I’ll never stray from the path of providing as much value as I can to my readers for free. That said, if some folks want more and are prepared to pay then maybe I can come up with something. Thanks again Andy, your support is much appreciated.

  10. Andy says:

    I wouldn’t poo poo your video editing skills too much, like everything it is a skill to be learnt, and the first SV Delos vid is awkward as hell. After 100+ videos, they have found their groove and are a slick piece of production. Most creators have found a very basic formula, ~30s intro, ~45s recap of previous video, 8 or 9 minutes of content, ~30s of what is coming next video, ~30s to thank sponsors and plug the youtube channel and Patreon etc. Some channels are just what have we done the last few weeks, some like SV Prism fell more like a travel channel video about a specific location. They all have their “thing”.

    I think you are different, because all the other sites have to offer is themselves, whereas you have tangible content to post. Think of Patreon as being as being an up sell to your blog. That is, follow the blog and get semi regular updates of what you are up to in your daily lives, current location etc. Sponsor on Patreon and get sneak preview of your work. If you make a video, post it a week ahead for your Patreons only, before it goes public on your blog. Take some special Patreon only pictures, I would love to add beautiful sunset in the med with a tiki 38 in it to my rotating desktop backgrounds. One month, I upped my donation to Delos to $25/vid just to get them to send me a free t-shirt. Do you have a location tracker ? When sailing, turn it on, and provide the link only to Patreon’s. You could even send free copies of kindle/hardcopy/audio books if they sponsor you at a rate higher than the cost of them, say $15. Sure, like I did with Delos, I might only do it for a month to get the extra freebie, but it comes down to what is considered to be “value”. These are just some of the things that other creators do.

    Honestly, I don’t think I will ever just send someone money, I never did prior to joining Patreon, so I will never use a creators paypal option. But I am happy to pay some money if I feel there is a transaction, that I’m paying for “something”, not just sending free money. I have a budget of about $50/month, I class it as “entertainment” in my budget, and it is. Real “reality shows”, not the fake created crap ! Even if you get one Patreon, that’s $5/month for you 😉 I think you could at least double your monthly average honestly.

    Good Luck !
    PS +1 one on the hardcopy sales, I’ve discovered I really hate reading kindle books 😉

  11. Rebecca Richardson says:

    Just got done reading your book ” A foolish voyage”…a great read any time of year but especially today being snowed/ iced in. Sailing is in my blood. During my first marriage in the 70-80’s my husband and I owned three sailboats [purchased on a shoestring budget] and sailed every night after work and on weekends. Spent summers in the San Juan’s [Pacific NW Washington USA]. Marriage only lasted 12 years. I suspect my ex is living aboard up in Port Townsend, WA but am not sure as we haven’t kept in touch. Thanks for taking me along on your frightful but adventurous time on the “Mor Gwas”. Looking forward to your next sailing book. Glad I discovered you via Amazon.com

  12. Thanks again for your honesty Neil and great content. You wrote about this hard topic such directly and naturally. I myself looking for some ideas about self sustainablity on board in the future as I hope my Tiki 38 is going to launch this year.
    Hope everything turns out very well.

  13. Andy says:

    Just came across this article about an author who publishes on Patreon 😉


  14. NeilH says:

    Thanks for that Andy. Working on it.

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