Even if it's just that privacy laws are fucked if you live in the UK.
I can legally shield my address in my domain name details for obvious privacy purposes — no one, particularly no LGBT person, wants a disgruntled or angry person turning up at their door.
But if you set up a mailing list, as authors are encouraged to do, then you're forced to send your home address to every single person who receives an email from you. Just so you can tell them exactly where to find you if they don't like you or your writing and they're a trifle unhinged.
"But what about a PO Box? People use those!"
Yeah, rich people use PO Boxes. Current prices are £29.40 a month, £152.40 for 6 months, or £267.00 for a year. And that's for the privilege of travelling 30-45 minutes on the bus to pick up any mail myself: they're only at sorting offices. If I want it forwarded on to me, you guessed it, that's more money.
Worth it for someone who sells maybe one book a month? Nope.
So, no mailing list. It's just not worth it for the massive risk it poses.
And that is that you get a much more cohesive conversation with Paypal (albeit eventually) over Twitter. You even get the same customer service rep every time.
I mean, I wouldn't need to have discovered the only way to have a sensible conversation is via Twitter versus via email* if someone hadn't decided to sign up to Paypal using my email address, and if Paypal didn't allow them to set up a bank/card account without needing to verify their email, which would have stopped the whole debacle in its tracks.
Which, in this day and age and with Google's bizarre "the dots aren't important" approach to email addresses, you would think would be a standard approach but apparently not. Unfortunately, the dots are important to quite literally everyone else, because I can't shut down this peculiar attempt at identity fraud because they omitted the dots in my account.
BUT! Apparently this person with the remarkably lax approach to personal and financial safety (they used my account to sign up for something else as well, which contained their full phone and address...) can't receive payment until they verify their account, and since they can't verify their account... I suspect their cunning plan is depressingly easily thwarted.
Or possibly it's all a big scam, albeit perpetrated by the world's worst scammer.
Either way, if you need to contact Paypal, Twitter is a great approach.
* I had a problem with my account maybe ten years ago and Paypal were the most spectacularly unhelpful entity ever. Email, phone, nothing worked. I just kept getting the same badly-cobbled-together form responses again, and again, and again... until they (eventually) asked for a notarised fax of my passport.
I can only assume they thought a photocopy of my passport signed by a lawyer would be an inconvenient and relatively expensive thing to obtain (think £20 per signed copy at the time). Unfortunately for them, I worked in a solicitor's office. I just asked a lawyer to sign it and then sent it from a machine that conveniently printed "_______ Solicitors" at the top.
It was resolved within a day.
There's something irritating about the way when you upload the file to Amazon, it says "no spelling erors."
Because it didn't notice Sigil had somehow lost half the damn opening speech marks, did it??
So I've just had to correct that and re-upload the file, and now I have to check the others too.
I'd love to know what happened there. I just hope it doesn't happen again.
I finished editing Gabrys's Gods Only Know What and I think it works better for the changes, particularly one section that worked, but a little crudely. I think that particular change works better and is actually a little more disturbing for being, well, less disturbing.
That sounds a little more weird than it really should.
I sent it off to a beta reader who'd read the initial version, but I've not heard back and I'm not wholly expecting to if I'm honest. I mostly did it for bookbinding purposes — yes, I bind books, although I lack the time and space to do it properly: the best I've managed recently was a small stab-bound sketchbook a couple of years ago — so whether I actually do anything with it beyond that is in the air. It's been sat around long enough, longer won't kill it or me.
One of the side effects from finishing this round of editing is it finally kickstarted me to write, albeit a little sporadically. I'm particularly happy that I managed to write a new chapter to the first arc of Radial, something I started years ago and lacked the impetus to continue given it's now spanning three or four main arcs and various short stories. I need to figure out how that's going, and again, whether that sees the light of day is anyone's guess. It's... not romantic. In the slightest. Alex and Milos loathe one another in this arc, even if they end up together (this really is not a spoiler given that 1. the storylines are all over the place already and 2. no one is ever gonna read it so who the fuck cares?)
The main problem is the day job has started taking up a lot of time. In the region of between 40-60 hours a week sort of time. It doesn't leave much time to actually write, given I have all the fun of being a full-time carer and also looking after the pets on top of it all. Which means, of course, this is the only time I get that itch in my fingers to write... probably because I have no time to write... or read or play video games — currently on Far Cry: New Dawn, Far Cry 5 being a game I somehow wrote an entire sub-narrative about in my head during many, many hours of playthrough.
I have managed to snag a few episodes of The Umbrella Academy though, which I love (so far; Gerard Way's stories have a bad habit of becoming incredibly sad). Gotta take the enjoyment where I can I guess, since I don't get much of it these days.