Every so often, I close my eyes, let myself drift, and then write what I saw. With a Sketches Subscription, you get access, insight, and influence into these little outings of mine.
To be clear, these are not stories (though, occasionally, they do develop into that). No, these are exercises. They are snapshots of a place or a person or a moment. Not trips to other worlds, but postcards sent from them. Not portraits, they are… well, sketches.
Here’s an EXAMPLE. I’ll wait here while you check it out.
Make more sense now? Alright.
“So what do I get when I subscribe to Sketches?” I assume that’s what you’re asking yourself. (It’s what I’d be asking yourself if yourself was myself.)
If you subscribe to Sketches, you'll get a pdf of at least one sketch sent to your email each month (some months will have more).
That’s the basic gist of it. But, also, you'll have the chance to shape the Sketches each month. Being part of the Sketches group, you’ll be able to send me stuff that you think would turn a good sketch. This might be a line of something that popped in your head one day. It might be a scene you saw while on an outing of your own. It might be a picture you took. Or, hey, it might be an actual sketch you drew. The only limits are as far away as you can imagine. (Well, that, and what you have rights too along with generally-accepted boundaries of decency.) Each month, I’ll select one or two of the ideas sent to me and see if I can go there and bring us back a sketch of that moment in time and space.
“Are any of my ideas guaranteed to become sketches?” No, I cannot promise that. Though, seeing as how the group will start out small, if you were to sign up early, there’d be a reasonably good chance.
“What does this have to do with Mercanthia?” Well, nothing. These sketches are wholly separate from the Mercanthian Story. However, with a Sketches Subscription, you'll get each new Mercanthian release emailed to you a week before it's released anywhere else and without having to fiddle around with getting it from a website.
Also, from time to time, I get asked questions about the Story that—for the sake of storytelling—I cannot answer, and not being able to answer a question leaves me feeling as if I have been a poor guide on our travels together. To make up for this, I’m putting together a Frequently Asked Questions section of the site to help provide some sort of relief to the itch that unanswered questions can cause. As part of the Sketches group, you will get the chance to help build that guide for this Mercanthian community of ours.
When a question has been asked enough that I feel it needs addressing, I’ll send it out to Sketches subscribers and anyone who has a theory on the matter at hand can submit it back to me. I’ll then pick the three theories I like best and want to share with our fellow travelers and add them to the site (giving you credit of course). And, if things go well, one of those theories will be at least close to the truth.
All that for only $3 a month.
“I don’t know. Still not sure this is for me.” I get that. Who wants to see their credit card being charged every month for something they’re not even sure they’ll like or care about? So, if it helps convince you, think of it this way: Once a month, we meet for drinks, you buy, and I tell you all about what I saw on my way there.
“Hmm, shouldn't you make some sort of artistic plea at some point?" Oh, right. Thanks for reminding me. As I am an independent author (who offers his stories up for free and wants to be very intentional about any money coming in also going to help causes beyond himself), that $3 every month would help me be able to keep telling the Story that brought you here. It would also help us make a greater impact with those causes, as 10% of the Sketches subscription will go to the cause affiliated with the tale currently being told.
“You've convinced me. Let's get me signed up for a Sketches Subscription."
Wait, is that not what you said? Oh, okay. Well, here's a way back to the Table of Contents then.