A meditation on “You should teach a workshop!”
“You should teach a workshop.”
About what? I ask, as if I’ve never ever heard that from anyone before, as if I don’t think about it a few times a week, when I watch this stuff slide by on Facebook, the fifth-chakra fellatio workshops and the publish-your-erotica seminars and … on and on. My friends are infinitely talented, so it follows that the amount and variety of workshops that they can generate seems similarly infinite.
“People make a lot of money on those.”
Do they, though? Some money, perhaps. I do need to keep my offerings diverse, diversify my holdings against the inevitable day when Fringe theatre is just no longer a going concern. And then, to be honest, all of the FB ads for the online workshops make me wonder. As far as I can tell, most of them tell you how to teach online workshops about teaching online workshops. They’re a giant pyramid scheme that seems to imply that a new sports car could be in my future if I would just seize the day and teach a fucking workshop. I already have one workshop, Intimacy Improv, about creating more play and acting a fool in one’s sexy-time relationships. So there’s that.
But people are specifically talking about online stuff, things that I could teach online, which, hell, I know how it’s done: the introductory emails that lead to the free webinars that are more than half infomercial leading to the next step, which is three different ways for the client to enroll and give me money, to get that one little thing that they’ve been missing. These online-workshop people have mastered the slow reveal, I mean, they could definitely teach burlesquers about leaving the punters wanting more.
I’ve poked around in enough of these online offers to know the approach. The tips and tricks and four secrets that marketers don’t want us to know, those are most often basic things about knowing what you want to sell and who you want to sell it to. As for the workshops themselves, it’s always about what you know how to do well. What are people always asking for your help on?
I can write. I can cuss like a sailor, blush-free. I feel okay asking people for money to support my art in, like, eight different ways. I can help a strange man get hard just by asking him questions for less than a minute. I can make eye contact with 100 strangers in a crowded bar and coax some of them into standing up and telling five-minutes stories about their first time. I listen well. I tour solo. I have a sizeable Facebook network that has a lot of dirty and self-aware pervs in it, so if someone asks in a private message “where should I go for these resources?”, I can throw that question out onto FB and pretty reliably get an answer.
The thing is, though, I don’t think I can write a workbook for this stuff. I don’t know how to package what it is that I do. “Chuck it all and pursue your passion for sexually explicit performing, and don’t starve to death on the road!” This does not have “best seller” written all over it. More to the point, I don’t know how many people even want to learn that. My knowledge is so niche, most of it. I can’t teach people how to follow their bliss. I’m barely able to keep up with mine.
I could teach another workshop, but I don’t think I should. Not yet. If you have suggestions, leave ‘em here in the comments. I’ve probably already thought of them before, but I’m cautiously open to possibilities.
Here’s one of the ways that I ask for money to fuel my art: become a patron of mine
on Patreon! Your small pledge joins the other small pledges, and then there’s a little more gas for the tank.