Patreon Opinions


Hey everyone:

I'm attempting to start a Patreon as a writer. Been writing for 10 years and I'm about to self-publish . . . long story short (too late!), I need some opinions to see if my tiers and milestones are worthwhile.

All my writer friends have never heard of this service and ended up just saying "That's cool. Good luck!"

Any feedback would be awesome.

EDIT: Just to show you how smart I am, I forgot to include a path to it. I blame my current migraine.


I’ve been going the patreon route as well and haven’t had much luck with it.

I think the big problem that you’re going to have like me is with the reward tiers as it’s weird to give people rewards when you’re going the monthly subscription route. I decided in the end to get rid of the rewards as I felt that I couldn’t really offer someone enough rewards to keep donating when a lot of what I was going to offer I did for free with changes to the site. I would suggest having links to some of your books, podcasts, anything that shows your work on the Patreon page so that people can immediately trace the Patreon back to you. And if you have any personal sites, blogs, twitter etc that people visit, make sure to mention the Patreon campaign there so again it gets traced back.


The footage of the editing process is a good idea, though I’d be worried it’d only interest other writers. Also, it seems like Patreon is a way to monetize a preexisting audience. Have you got one of those? If not, may be putting the cart before the horse.

Also! You’ve got a typo in your intro text, you’ve got “peak” where it should be “peek.”


Yeah, I’ve got it all over (though I’m not sure the best way to have my links throughout the campaign) and have been mentioning it on my social media stuff. The advice on rewards is a good one, though with this model is hard to think of a good “each” model, seeing as I primarily write novels.

I’ve got a bit of one. Been doing this for several years, got a bit of an audience for the Dubious Consumers podcast . . .

Also, peak vs peek is the bane of my existence. Had to change every one in my novel. Seems I haven’t learned my lesson, but I’ll get it changed posthaste.


I know how you feel – every time I have to type led, I have to make sure I didn’t write lead. (Why can’t it work like read?!) Anyway, good luck with the patreon, it’s a good route to try.


Lead works just like read. Lead doesn’t, however.


Just don’t bury the lede.


I guess I’ll bump this since its the closest thing we have to a Patreon thread. I was shocked to see how well Jim Sterling was doing with his patreon. I recall it being in the low $2k range when I last checked early last year, he is now almost raking in $10k a month for content he produces.

Also the ex-maxis dev who also had a patreon for creating buildings and content for Cities Skylines posted his last creation at the end of February. He finally found a full time job, so good for him!


Hey, stupid question, but how do you get the Patron! text to appear next to your name after signing up to support Tom/Qt3?


If you use the same email for Patreon and here, I gather it should just happen, once Tom notices/updates.


And is there any way I could get that switched to Johnnie Walker! instead?


It’s an automated thing. Assuming you registered for Patreon with the same email address, a Discourse plugin will make the connection and update your account. It checks every few hours.

Note that the “Patron!” tag, which is redundant with the eyeball icon, is just a placeholder. I’ll be sending a message out via Patreon next week, but those titles will be whatever you guys want them to be.



Naturally I didn’t use the same email addy. I wasn’t sure if Patreon was spammy and used an old account that I don’t care about. No biggie, I figured I managed to mess it up somehow.


Well, considering I started this topic by putting that cart before the horse, I wanted to see what you guys thought of my new design and reward structure considering I now have a YouTube channel to back it up.

Any helpful suggestions would be great. I have one diehard so far that’s upgraded his pledge from $1 to $2 to $5 per video. I’m about to find out if he capped it at 5, since I’ve released 2 videos this months (technically 3 with the intro on Patreon). Even if I had a handful of people pledge $1, I’d be in a whole different boat.

So far, with 22,000 views on my channel, I’ve only made about $20 and that still won’t be paid out until I hit $100.

What do you guys think?


I don’t have any advice about incentivizing subscribers. I often don’t share your views, in fact vehemently disagree (IMHO: Ninth Gate movie was a total abomination, Perez Reverte’s Club Dumas was magnificent, and IT should’ve been one of those King novels he scrapped after three months) but I do respect your opinion, insight, humor and the work you put in to writing and editing your releases. For the moment, I’m happy to toss a buck a video your way.


Not bad, up to $12k/month now with almost 6k patrons.


Yeah I’d say he is doing very well.

Worth a Buy - Mack’s Corner who I also back is up to $3.5k a month, most of his youtube stuff gets flagged due to potty mouth. :p


Good to know there’s opposition there. The worst I’ve gotten in the comments for my videos was someone railing against Stephen King for talking bad about Trump. /shrugs/

Thank you for the support. I’m looking forward to you voicing when I’m vehemently wrong. That’s probably going to come up a lot in my Inception video I’m working on.


Hate to keep bringing this back from the dead, but there is news on the Patreon front that’s going to affect all the Patrons.

Now they’re changing it from charging the creators service fees and moving them to the Patrons.

For every $1 donation, the Patron now has to pay $1.38 and the Creator will make .95¢. This will happen for every creator you support.

On one hand, it’ll be nice to have more take home. Before, if you paid $5, they’d take .25¢ off the top, then there were fees that could be up to .75¢ off that. So I’d make about $4, maybe less.

Now I’ll make $4.75, but they’re going to charge you 2.9%+.35¢, so about $5.50 per video now.

Sorry to get bogged down in the minutia of it, but what do you think?

Should creators need to disclose those fees upfront or leave it up to the patrons to notice?

I can see a lot of blowback either way. Over explain and you lose a lot of potential donors, but when they’re hit with the extra charges, I can see a lot of drops.


2.9% plus 30 cents is the standard creditcard processing fee passed along from their merchant banks. Everybody charges that, so it is very odd that Patreon tacked an extra 5 cents on top. Anyway, that’s very close to their actual cost. Maybe they get charged an extra 5 cents due to their small size or something. The 5% cut is where they make their money.

I basically think this is stupid, because patrons will try to pledge a buck, actually get charged $1.38, and get pissed off. It’s better for the creators to eat whatever fees may exist to avoid that discussion ever coming up.

Note we’re also discussing this in the Qt3 specific Patreon thread.