ETA: Since writing this post, I decided to take a step to making what I do now earn me a potential living wage: Patreon.
I’ve been doing a lot more lately than I envisioned I would be, rounding in on my 6 year anniversary of starting this blog. I think I’ve known for a couple of years that I like doing what I do, and would like to do it more and more professionally, but I’ve really been reminded of that lately. While modding over at Reddit, I get at least one chance a day to mold a clueless sex-toy-seeker into a sex-toy-owner. I think I’m pretty good at it. I tend to ask a lot of questions, really try to get an understanding of their body, their preferences, their dislikes and turn that into a recommendation that is spot-on. Last week I even created this whole huge questionnaire created in Google Docs, which starts off asking what type of sex toy they’re seeking, and then (similar to a choose-your-own-adventure book) their answer dictates what questions they will be asked next. I worked long and hard on it, so I’m not really sure about sharing it publicly just yet. In the age of “well if you published it online then you must be okay with me appropriating it and calling it mine” I am wary. Maybe needlessly wary, but nonetheless I only give out the link to the people who actually need help. After all, if you’re not in the market for a sex toy then there’s no point in you going through the quiz, right? That would be boring!
Earlier today my husband and I were talking and as it sometimes goes, we talked about money. Because we were talking about places we want to visit this summer. He knows that I desperately want to travel to Europe someday. But we’ll never get there with our money situation the way it is now. We’ll never have that kind of excess money. I need to return to work. When we moved 3 years ago for a new job for him, the salary was enough that I didn’t *need* to get a job right away. We need every bit of money I make from advertising and affiliate commissions, though. I would have had to get a part-time job without it. But the fact is, I can’t make enough money just from this blog to save up for big trips. Or costly emergencies. Or a big renovation on the home we’ll be looking to buy next year.
Yet it depresses the fuck out of me to imagine going back to the only job I’m qualified for – the administrative assistant field. Sure I was good at the first full-time admin job I had, working for a small company, but it was stressful and didn’t pay well. The next job was boring and soul-sucking. Neither were what I wanted to do with my life. But I’ve never felt that I had any marketable skills.
But this? What you’re looking at right now?
This I can do. This makes me happy. I think I do a pretty good job at it. But I don’t live in an area, or even a state, where there are NICE sex toy shops. We only have ones that I’d refuse to work for, because 95% of their sex toy stock is the shit I tell people to avoid. When I think back to the people I used to work with at those admin jobs, I cringe. They were small-minded closed-minded people. They are nothing like the people I have met in my 6 years doing this.
Even if I went back to life as it was for the first 3 years of my blog……working full time, grabbing blog and social media time during slow periods at work and in the evening, it still would suck. Spending 40 hours a week in a job that depresses me is my idea of hell. I’d rather avoid it unless it is 100% necessary. Would I happily be “on call” for sex toy retail sites when someone needs help choosing? You bet. Would I enjoy working from home doing something for a sex toy retail site I like? Fuck yes. But I don’t know how to make it happen. I don’t have a degree. I don’t know how to break into it. I want to keep reviewing and being a small-time sex toy concierge for Redditors and my readers, I want to keep on educating people against toxic toys. I need to. It feels like it’s the ONLY thing I’m good at, the only thing that makes me happy.
But my happy is on a small island, offshore just enough so that I can see it but not enough so that I can swim to it and I can’t find a boat.