Those of you who have been with us for a while will recall that we maintain a Patreon account. It was originally established when it became clear that, because medical bills had eaten our downpayment, the Cat Farm and Confusion Factory would not be relocating, and thus would need to Take Steps to upgrade the current arrangement.
The most important single thing that we felt needed to be done to make our house in the country safer as we got older was a whole-house generator. We set a monthly goal of $2,000, and with the help of many, we were able to install the generator.
At that time, after taking advice, we did not offer goodies or other incentives, aside from our very sincere thanks (and the sincere thanks of the cats, naturally).
This time, we're returning to the theme of medical bills. Not only did Steve have a "heart event" in November, but he has had, since elementary school, an ongoing dental. . .issue (which very likely exacerbated his heart problems), which entered a new phase of expense. In Maine -- at least in our part of Maine -- dental insurance is Very Thin On The Ground, so we've been doing the Insured by Visa thing. We thought we could whack down the backlog reasonably, but the fine dental professionals keep front loading more stuff, and there's only so much room on that Visa card.
In addition, my health insurance payments have been going onto that same Visa card, as well as some. . .unanticipated medical bills of my own (not wanting to be left out, or anything).
Anyway, long story short, we've "announced" a new Patreon goal of $2,500 per month, and! we're offering an incentive for folks to sign up or increase their pledges.
So, here's what we're going to be doing: Patrons will have special early access to one (or both) of us reading a chapter, a short story, a poem several times a month (right now, given doctor's appointments, Random Is, but we'll shoot for every other week). Ambient cat noises supplied at no extra charge. The reading will be posted first on Patreon, for the enjoyment of patrons only, and eventually – after a month or two – migrate to Splinter Universe, for the Edification of All.
We expect to post our first reading installment on April 15, 2017, to give USian patrons something to look forward to on Income Tax Day.
Fuller details are available at our Patreon page. Here's the link.
As before, and as always, donating is utterly and entirely voluntary. Please do not stint yourself or your household, or deny yourself books! (Especially do not deny yourself books! This is about getting y'all new books on schedule, among other things.) If you can help us out, and you want to help us out -- thank you, very much. We're cool, whatever you decide to do.
And I'll just take this little space that's left down here at the bottom of the page to thank everyone who has given us support, including buying our books, sending cards, and random surprise gifts, PayPal donations, Patreon pledges, and kind letters. It all helps. Really. You guys are awesome.
So, that's what's going on. First reading goes live on Monday. Steve's picking out a story right now.