TANSTAAFL Day 9 — Saturdays have been difficult to deal with lately.

Mostly in terms of getting out of bed and functional. I’ve been up for five hours, but most of it was wandering in a fog and walking into walls, in my pajamas and bunny slippers. I will momentarily go and make sure I didn’t feed the cats the strawberries I’d set aside for muffins, but first:

THE GOAL IS $50,000

the counter stands at: 24,640.62 USD*(Updated at least every 8 hours, more often if i happen to be here.)



Note that I expect once check donations are counted I’m probably right around 26k and change (don’t know yet, as I haven’t checked the mailbox. There will probably be an adjustment next week) which means right on target for the target. I’m somewhat interested/baffled about how different this is than a “rescue fundraiser.” The psychology and mechanisms should be studied, but not by me. If one of you is pursuing some strange degree, a study would be fascinating.

Why I’m Doing This

In the last year, when (because of moving/selling the other house expenses, largely) I found myself in serious money straits, it became clear that my refusal to ask for money for the work I do on this blog didn’t just affect me but my entire family.

Having started this blog to publicize my fiction writing, I found it becoming sociopolitical, and philosophical, largely because I really can’t write every day about things that don’t interest me that much. I can write endlessly about writing/reading fiction, but then the blog becomes largely from writers for writers, which is a small niche. It’s also a little weird to expect most of my fans to be other writers. So, it drifted to things non-writing that interest me. And is therefore lousy at publicizing my writing. (It also got me in bad odor with most of the science fiction publishing establishment because of what my politics are. Eh.)

What it has become over the years is its own thing, and its own community. Between writing and tending the community, this more or less eats my morning every day.

In the time I have left, I must write fiction (I’m so late on everything), publish both me and the family (I’m SO LATE ON EVERYTHING), publicize (ah!) and maintain website and newsletter. Which means even if I’m working at full tilt, I’m always late. And that’s without counting everyday and family duties, like cooking and laundry. (Yeah, we could divide them, but it’s faster for me to do, and besides he handles the accounting, which takes just as long. I can’t do it because digit transposing just happens.) To do something is to be delinquent on all the other things.

I’ve lived like this for years, unable to afford help/an assistant. And always on the edge of falling off financial solvency.

The crisis last November brought me to realize that while fundraising makes me deeply uncomfortable, I don’t have the right to avoid it at the expense of making my family go through nerve-wracking times and at the expense of making the family live with a writer-zombie in their midst.

So, there is a fundraiser.

It seems to be working too, so thank you to everyone who donated and everyone in general for putting up with the cup-rattling.

To compensate, I’m releasing a picture I created under creative commons license, every day.


Tier 1– $10 or more – A shout out on my blog, all with all other the supporters, by name, in one massive “Thank you” post. [Jokey or offensive names will not be included at author’s discretion.]

Tier 2– $25 or more – Email jpg of certificate with funny fish saying “I Was Carped at according to hoyt.com” and a Certificate of being a member of Hoyt’s Huns, cultural wars sapper battalion, in good standing.

Tier 3– $60 or more – Exclusive ebook collection of USAian stories. (Including a new, original, never published story.) Estimated delivery August 2023

Tier 4– $100 or more – Your name will appear in a mass death/other mass event/list in one of Sarah’s books. [estimated delivery up through July 2023. All indie books, as no others are guaranteed.]

Tier 5– $150 or more – A sound file of Sarah saying “Moose and Squirrel.”

Tier 6 – $250 or more – Will send a signed copy of trade paperback Gentleman takes a chance and one large postcard with book covers, also signed. (USPS- continental US only. All others, let’s talk.) [estimated delivery Sept 2022]

Tier 7 – $350 or more – Three signed books (of our choice), plus two extra items from “Sarah’s Garage”, (also of our choice) which might very well be a small rubber fish. (You’ve been warned.) USPS only. Continental U.S. only [estimated delivery Sept 2022]

Tier 8 – $500 or more – Personalized tuckerization. You will become your very own zany character, with at least a line or two of dialogue, and physical description. Physical safety and life of character not guaranteed. If you perish, it will NOT (repeat not) be in a mass death event or a list of other kinds.  [estimated delivery up through July 2023. All indie books, as no others are guaranteed.] [Jokey or offensive names, descriptions and personalities will not be included at author’s discretion.]

Tier 9 – $1000 or more – A CHOICE OF:

Option 1 -Will read the first 10 pages and outline of your novel and provide timely critique, with the understanding that I am not infallible. (A skype, zoom or other video call to discuss the work for an hour or so.) [estimated delivery Winter 2022 – Spring 2023]

Option 2 – Large box of ten signed books, plus items ranging from a con badge, to a mini dinosaur skeleton or a print of Sarah’s original art, or other items from Sarah’s garage. USPS only. Continental U.S. only [estimated delivery Sept 2022]

Option 3 – Signed copy of Sarah’s old copyedited or page-proof manuscripts. [estimated delivery Fall 2022] (5 limit.)

Tier 10 $5000 or more – You will become a major character on one of my books, and I’ll try to reflect your appearance, and chosen personality.  [estimated delivery up through July 2023. All indie books, as no others are guaranteed.] [Jokey or offensive names, descriptions and personalities will not be included at author’s discretion. You don’t get to have someone else be an offensive character. (Sorry!) Your actions will be altered to serve the plot if needed.] – Limit 5. (You’ll be informed if this has been claimed, and given a chance for a refund or of a comparable reward.)

Tier Insane – $25000 or more – My husband and I will travel to a city in the continental US and have dinner with you and your plus one.  (Continental US only.) – Limit ONE. [Delivery up to July 2023.] (You’ll be informed if this has been claimed, and given a chance for a refund or of a comparable reward.)


If you want to be thanked/mentioned by a name different from your regular one, please email to: bookpimping at outlook dot com.


DONATE TO ACCORDING TO HOYT TAANSTAFL DAYS (The previous words are a link!)


Sarah A. Hoyt

Goldport Press

304 S Jones Blvd #6771

Las Vegas, NV  89107


I call this one “Assassins” but I’m not sure why. I don’t have a narrative to go with it, sorry
This Picture was created by Sarah A. Hoyt and is released under CC BY

CC BY-active link to explain rights.

19 thoughts on “TANSTAAFL Day 9 — Saturdays have been difficult to deal with lately.

  1. Questions.

    Why would two assassins be standing so close together? If I was being attacked by an assassination team, My bodyguards and I would Love For Them To Be Standing Together so our return fire could get all of them.

    Of course, the setting is strange. My bodyguards and I would just love assassins trying to get me when no innocents would be around to be hit by our return fire.

    1. It’s a trap! They have that photo taken and surreptitiously distributed, and thus lure people into thinking them incompetent.

  2. It does have a bit of a “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” vibe.

    …Speaking of, if you want something in that line, search for “The Killer is Also Romantic”. Basically, that story set in Tang Dynasty China. The hiding-the-weapons on the wedding night was giggle-worthy.

  3. Hi Sarah

    I’ve chipped in too, because I like your books. Now I’m just hoping to still be around in August next year, because I’m 81 and in rather poor health as a cancer survivor for 10 years.

    Cheers, John

  4. Had to look it up, but it sounds like cats can, in fact, eat strawberries.

    My cat has a fascination with beer, the hoppier the better. Hopps are poisonous to cats, by the way, so he is in no way allowed to imbibe, no matter how firmly he tried to stick his head one’s cup.

    This is the same car who shows love and affection by running between your feet when you’re walking too…

  5. Hi,

    I mailed your package today to Goldport Press. Look for a little ThermoFisher box I scavenged from work in about five days. It has the slippers I promised to make during the last drive and a contribution to TANSTAAFL. Hope you enjoy and good luck.

  6. You’re welcome!
    I just hope the slippers fit.
    I adapted the traditional knit granny slipper pattern to have some shaping. If anyone is interested in the “Space Princess” Shaped Granny Slippers, I can try to share the instructions- a copy of my handwritten chicken scratch the easiest and fastest.

  7. Hmm. I always view these as though I am the POV character.

    My narrative is that I’m kneeling with two assassins behind me – and this is a Mexican stand off with my would-be rescuers.

    (They’re pointing over my head – and not at the same target. Unless it’s the size of a Hut…)

  8. Looks like she got herself into a jackpot, he came up behind for support, and is about to send her back to cover to cover his withdrawl.

    But then again, my fiction is anachronistic, patriarchal, and favors men defending women, so felt the need to explain why a manly man would shelter behind any woman who allowed his right hand in that position.

    Also, being left-handed, I saw a but if myself…

    1. They’re obviously dancing and he’s about to spin her. He catches, does a neck dip, and she shoots past him at the people sneaking up behind.

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