Well 2020 was a year that’s for sure.
My pragmatic analysis is rather positive for just how bad a year it was. This blog though preformed better than last year with even less content.
Rather than poor into the weeds like I did last year. This year I just want to cover the chaos and triumphs of my life and my plans for the rest of the year.
Failures: Last year I decided that working on the blog was not going to get me attention and instead drafted a project to create a card game and run a twitch and youtube channel. It was drastically a failure and cost me tons of energy and time and then the pandemic hit. I was furloughed and gym’s were closed. I was using the gym as core component to my writing process and rather than work around not having gym access, I but a pause on the ContractMan. I dove into tik-tok and webtoons, while finalizing the cost and progress of running the card/game twitch, youtube project I called Freelander Adventures. The cost was very very high and while I feel certain that given about a year of that same workflow (about 20 hours a week) I could create some quality entertain and grow a platform for Freelander Adventures. I would be unable to keep that pace and work on the ContractMan once/if furlough ended. I found out that while Tik-tok has great discovery it has terrible C.T.A. and cross platform conversion, basically it’s a waste. Webtoons was a fun project that forced me to work on my art and complete a project a 3 times a week. I stopped shortly after returning to work in June though. It was costing me 8 hours a week, and Webtoons is a platform for multiple issue narratives (drama’s in particular), not the style of comic I was creating.
Failures cont: In November I launched an indiegogo campaign (corona girl), I spent 45 days working on the marketing before launch, main costs were Fiver artists and a FOAF who 3d printed a couple of models for me. I learned that Facebook advertising is the best $per ad spent on the internet. But unfortunately since I chose to launch a project based on corona, I was shunted from facebook advertising, It makes sense I’m not bitter but had I of made a different choice the campaign may have been successful. When I started the project I thought that I would be able to find a supplier for vinyl figures in America for a limited run of 2020 figures for relatively cheap, but the base cost of the Project ended up being $90,000 and that’s not a dime of profit, so I knew the project had slim to zill chances before launch, the Facebook curving was just the final nail. I am very glad though that I launched and received the support I did get and the lesson that when dealing with an influencer advertising deal a lead time of 4 to 5 months is required.
Successes: We (my wife and I) purchased our first home in July. Furlough and unemployment gave us enough money to pay for closing costs. We got 10k of high interest debt wrapped into the loan. Including my car loan, while our monthly rent has shifted a few hundred up into a mortgage, we lowered our overall expenses and managed to increase our take home. I’ve moved to full-time rather than part time so I have even less time for these Freedom projects but I have a roof and we are building more wealth than previous years. I don’t have to worry about rent going up for the next 30 years either, so that’s nice.
Improvements: Personally/professionally/physically I have improved, beyond any ambitions I ever had (except that six-pack is still eluding me). I’ve reached a decent position and workflow professionally. I’m improving my art skills weekly and have art ambitions to couple somehow with my writing ambitions now. I’ve refined good methods for Freedom projects workflow, while working full-time.
Aspirations: 2021 won’t get back to normal till June (hopefully), but this new-normal isn’t so rough. My aspirations might change so 2022 Hppo don’t worry you’re a pragmatist not a zealot. But my plans as of today are to launch a weekly essay about characters in fiction and how they relate to the Vox heirarchy. I think that this will be interesting and take maybe 5 hours a week which is sustainable, that doesn’t include the time I’ll spend watching media for “research and relaxation” which is one of the reasons I want to do this. I’ve wanted to explain why Starship Troopers is the perfect narrative about a Delta’s transformation to Alpha, but I did the math and it would take 30 to 40 hours for me to make a *cough* decent Youtube about it. My second aspiration is to somehow use art and narrative to create a profitable project that I can work on with my limited 10 hours of production time a week. When I part-time I had 30 hours of production time to write ContractMan and Blog and other. But now I have only one super session of concentration a week, ContractMan took 2 super sessions a week to produce a manuscript every 4 months.
Lessons learned TL:DR
Tik-tok, twitter, and reddit are largely wastes
Facebook is great
Webtoons is for drama and narrative weeklies
Twitch/Youtube are high energy projects,
Indiegogo/fiver is still a good combo but unless you have a lot of resources time and money a team of 3-4 is needed, If I get a team I’ll try again, otherwise an established platform and audience is required.
If purchasing adspace from an influencer, be prepare to be 5 months ahead of launch.
Hey 2022 Hppo! Sempir Optima, the fruits of your labor are still seeds of the orchard. Have faith.