Divine guidance requested.

Happy 100 days to Lime Tree! … Happy 100 days to Melinda! … Happy 100 days to Maya June!

Ever since i decided to do some small bit of sober coaching, i’ve had the usual weird feelings. Is it right to charge for this, how much should i charge, what about the people who can’t afford it. Is it feasible that this can become my one job.

Mostly i’ve been just doing bits and pieces, and then waiting. Do something else, and then wait again. Waiting (i think) for inspiration, ideation, confirmation.

One of the reasons a sober chick like me writes a blog, is because i’ve got stuff in me that needs to come out; to put it another way: writing is how i explain things to myself. “How will i know what I think, until i read what i’ve written?” (Faulkner quote, sort of).

What i’ve discovered in recording audio postcards, is that speaking the sober messages is soothing. And that listening to the audio again, after i’ve recorded it, is like hearing it for the first time.  It’s like … well, it’s like it’s not me, not my voice. It’s like a message from somewhere else. A message to me.

so starting a few weeks ago, I recorded a couple of audio postcards, posted them here on the blog, and then felt like i wanted to record them more often, maybe every couple of days, but didn’t want to fill up the blog with lots of rambling.

So i created a subscription podcast thing, and put all of the newly recorded podcasts on one page, so that subscribers can see them all at once, can listen, re-listen, download, whatever.

But the weirdness, for me, continues to be something along the lines of… i’m recording stuff that speaks to me. then i’m putting it on a locked site that only a handful of people can access.

And yes, while i understand the nature of earning money (i have a business or two), there continues to be endless cyclings of thoughts in my head about charging for what happens on this blog (or for accessory stuff that happens because of this blog).

Yes, i understand the arguments about “belle you should earn something for your effort” …

… but as soon as i create a paid thing, like the sober audio postcards, i get weird.

So i’m writing today to try to figure out WHY.

I LOVE recording the audios. I am currently trying to limit myself to once every 2-3 days, but could probably do one a day (even paid subscribers probably don’t want so many – and what if my idea source runs out, better to be ‘moderate’ in my approach so i don’t burn out/run out).

I really LOVE doing the audios. I love recording them, i love listening to them again (i hear something new every time).

It’s like i’m ‘receiving’ a message, and then i get to listen to the message as if for the first time.

I also really love sharing the messages. I get emails like this one from Lex: “Oh boy Belle, I wonder how many people have said that the podcast was like perfect for me?”

so here’s where I’m at today. To share or not to share. How much to share. what to charge for. how many people to reach. who’s excluded.

ok. anyway. long story. not even saying much.

To try to bridge the gap, in some small way, I want to put up an extract today from Sober Postcard #2 that is part of paid subscription.

This audio extract is the first 2 minutes of a longer 8.5 minute audio.

You can listen. And let me know what you think. About everything.

About everything. Divine guidance requested.



Original source for the story, used with permission


I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • You have a gift.
    Use your gift to make yourself happy.
    YOu are not taking anything away from your blog, the pod casts are just an additional message if readers want to participate.
    You are being a penpale to those of us who need one and are cheering us on this 100 day challenge….free of charge!
    So thank you! can’t wait for my wolfie bracelet and I hope you made some money selling these!

  • Happy 100 to all of you superstars!! It time to celebrate, you did it!!! So happy for you guys Cx
    Belle, the reason people write books is cause they have got something wonderful they want to share. They (usually )charge because it’s valid and it takes time and they have to make a living. If you have a something too good not to share it will find it’s way to those who need it. Maybe a free stream (available for a shorter period of time on the blog) and then upgrade the paid element somewhat, with the added bonuses of more frequent audio, the chance to access anytime, bonus tracks! You’ll find a way of making it work both ways.
    I love the audios and enjoy having my own stash of them to revisit as and when. Certainly useful for referring back to/topping up, on hols etc.
    C x

  • Nothing divine about my thoughts, but
    1) If everyone thought they shouldn’t be compensated for doing something that helps others, then we would not have any paid doctors, or firefighters or police or etc. etc. etc.
    2) If you have a talent that helps others, I don’t see anything wrong with getting compensated–especially since getting compensated may allow you more time to focus on providing that assistance.
    3) Nothing wrong with getting paid for doing what you love—isn’t that what “they” say-find something you love to do and it’s never considered work?

    Just my two cents.

    • to clarify, I’m not so worried about charging for the podcasts, it’s just weird to create something that only a handful of people can share.

  • I don’t know Belle, and I’m definitely not divine. I guess I go with the long held belief of AA which is in order to “keep it”, you have to “give it away.” I also go with my own belief that my “divine” and earthly rewards are going to be so much greater if I share freely this gift I’ve been given to all who want it. But that’s not saying that when I started writing my blog I didn’t have secret hopes that some publisher wouldn’t stumble on it and give me a million dollar advance to write my story and I sure as Hell would have accepted that money. But I’ve continued to write the blog for three years even though I’ve come to the realization that my publisher isn’t going to show up.

    For me, I would have to decide if I was blocking some people that really needed or wanted to hear my message because of the money issue, and then decide if it was more important that those people hear the message or that I made some money.

    However, I understand that if I was trying to make this my life’s calling or career, I would have to make some money at it. A girl’s gotta eat. You are already putting out a daily blog that is free to everyone and I admire the time and discipline that takes.

    See, I am a horrible debater, I always see both sides. Don’t listen to me, listen to that quiet still voice inside of you that is telling you that there is something you’re uncomfortable with, figure out what it is, and then fix it.