Two things: long-term ad space, and a growing supply of extra entertainment.
This is the current list of benefits. I'll be adding to it as we go along:
As site traffic continues to grow, you may find that the ad space alone is worth it.
Your 468x60 banner image will appear randomly in the rotating central ad space in the header. Every time a visitor loads any page, there's a chance they'll see your banner right at the top. How often your banner turns up in the rotation is based on how many Sparks you purchase proportionate to how many other people own Sparks. One Spark will get you a certain chance to appear, two Sparks will double your chances, and so on.
Additionally, your 100x100 button image will have a dedicated spot on the main Sparks page, where people can visit and see it any time. It will also periodically be featured as the Spark of the Day (next to the banner on each page). On those days, it will be continuously visible for 24 hours on every page of the site.
You can! You may use your ad space to promote a site for your friend, a family member, or anyone else you admire. (Some current Spark-holders are already using their space to promote webcomics they enjoy.) You can even do so anonymously; if you like, I'll e-mail them to say that an unnamed benefactor has bought advertising for them.
Even when you choose to advertise for someone else, you'll still own the Spark and retain control of the ad space. (See next question.)
If you own multiple Sparks, you can also switch from using them all for one site, to using them separately for different sites, and vice versa.
Of course! You can use as many or as few of the Sparks privileges as you like. If you just want to put your ad up and move on without visiting the forum, you can. If you don't have a website or don't want to advertise, you're still welcome on the forum. You can even own Sparks without using them at all -- but you'll always have the option to submit an ad and/or visit the Sparks forum whenever you like.
Since there are a limited number of ad spots (50), there are advantages to owning a larger percentage of the total:
Any amount that you donate can count toward the price of a Spark. Just remember, it's possible that someone will buy the 50th Spark outright (and thus claim the last ad spot) before your donations add up. If that happens, even though you won't get the ad space, you'll still gain forum access and all of the other Sparks benefits.
So, yes! If you make (for example) four $25 donations over time, that will add up to one Spark for you!
In the interest of supporting True Magic, I've been looking for ways to provide more valuable rewards for readers' contributions. There are many services and incentives I could offer -- ad space, bonus art, sneak peeks at developing content, and so on -- but promoting them all separately would clutter up the site. I want True Magic to stay as clean and attractive as possible, so this is my solution:
Instead of offering many separate incentives, I'm making everything available in one place. A Spark is a virtual token that represents all of the extra worth this site has to offer its supporters -- starting with what I have now, and expanding as I find and create more benefits to add. That's why I chose the name: a Spark is something small and focused that can expand into something big and bright.
I intend to keep adding to the worth these Sparks represent, year by year, until they become blazing miniature suns of value and entertainment.
In short, I'm providing a simple and easy way for you to contribute, and aiming to make it as worthwhile for you as possible.
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