Daily Cosmonaut #16: Values v Money
I work twelve-hours almost every day, including weekends. Almost every time that I explain how little I earn to the people who see how hard I work, they are puzzled. How do I make it work? Why would I make these “compromises?” What if something happens to me? What am I going to do for retirement?
It’s been a long time since publishing has been an industry that people pursue for money. But what the above (well intentioned) concerns don’t take into account is that there are far more important things than money.
To me publishing has always been about pursuing my values without compromise. It’s a way to give rise to voices that don’t get heard. It’s a way to challenge popular but stupid narratives. It’s a way that I don’t need to seek outside approval or funding to tell the world what I think is vitally important. And those values are so much more important to me than money that I’ve worked without any compensation at all during three different periods in Microcosm’s history. It was more important to continue to do this work than it was to get paid even though that meant that I had to work a second (and sometimes third) job to make that happen.
These days, things are a bit more relaxed. I’ve been trying to take the weekends off with varying success. I recently have been quizzing people about what others do on vacation and everyone tells me a variation of “Impulsively do exactly what you want, when the muse strikes you.” But that’s what I do every day.