Samantha Squirt gave us a tidal wave… of fantastic and useful information gleaned from almost four years worth of online sex work.
Hailing from Florida but currently in Washington state, she has been camming since November 2015 at age eighteen. “Of course, that was right before I turned nineteen in December,” she shared.
Squirt got into cam because of scheduling, as well as lifestyle goals. She explained:
I was attending college with a schedule that would change every semester. It didn’t matter much until I got a part-time job… I also volunteered there quite frequently off hours.
Originally, while still working there part-time and maintaining a full-time college schedule, I started camming for two to four hours on weekend evenings to get a taste for the clients and the demands. A friend of mine who had been camming for a few years before recommended it when she knew my part time job income wasn’t keeping up with the lifestyle I wanted. I always had wondered how she got to do so many things while living away from her parents…
Famous last words!
Samantha Squirt took some time out to share a bit more about the importance of scheduling (a definite theme), maintaining one’s humanity and sustaining a balanced, multi-faceted life in the midst of work, work, work.
YNOT Cam: One of the most fundamental aspects of camming is scheduling. Are there any challenges – or perks – that come along with that?
Samantha Squirt: There are challenges for sure. You have to have self-discipline from the start to convince yourself to setup and login. You always need to do so, with a consistent schedule. At first, while getting a feel for busier hours or days, you can experiment, but with time comes fans and regulars. Men have fixed hours (usually) and like to know their favorite [model](s) will be there when they want to relax. Creating a schedule and sticking to it is the biggest challenge.
Inversely, you won’t have a boss to report to or an office or cubicle you have to maintain in a certain way. It is your space and time to do with as you want. Maybe you have classes like I did that would shift every semester. Guess what? You can just change your schedule for that semester and add in some study time if need be. You create every bit of your schedule.
— 🌞Samantha_Squirt💦 (@Samantha_Squirt) July 11, 2019
Are there any other “growing pains” that happen when a model is just starting out?
Starting out, traffic could be troublesome. Sometimes sites highlight fresh faces, but that doesn’t mean you’ll know what to offer. Guys may heckle a new [model] to bend the rules or give away freebies knowing that she hasn’t built up the knowledge to tell them off or tip. I had guys tell me to do things first before they’d take me private, you know, like prepping? I learned pretty fast that they’d want the action or manipulation before leaving me hanging. Just ask for the man to take you private first or tip for a costume change. Just prepare for them to tell you that they are different from the other men. They all say that. If they truly respect you, they will be compliant.
What about keeping an eye on your income? What are some things to watch out for during the initial stages of camming?
Make sure you know how much you need for your bills and basic expenses. Pay attention to what your hourly average is. Work the number of hours in a pay period you think you’d need to get to your minimum at the very least. If you make bonus or start making more, you can either cut back your hours or just keep going and use that bonus for a buffer or new toys!
Be prepared for income to fluctuate. Out of the three and a half years, I can tell you that some months are better than others. During winter, people are staying inside more due to the cold. Summer break means the kids are home all day. Popular sports or shows can also act as a hindrance for traffic during certain hours. Never fret though. Just work a consistent schedule with some adjustments.
What about any equipment or supplies you might need to get started?
Costumes, toys and makeovers — when starting up, you’ll have to invest in the equipment for the job which can be daunting at first and a challenge. On the flip side though, you can write off these work expenses on your taxes! Anything you deem to be necessary: the video camera, a costume, a dildo and even your nails and hair. As long as their primary purpose is for camming, they can be written off. Score for us!
On your Cams.com page, you wrote: “Please note: a woman of the web and while I am about as real as you get, our relationship is online. I love meeting people from all over and I genuinely want to talk to you and get sexy with you as long as you respect that this is also my job. I don’t meet up in real life, ever, but I will be your long-term online fantasy.”
Do you find that you have to explain these boundaries to people often, or do most people “get it”?
Despite my description, people are always wanting to meet up. Some of them are just playing around while a few are serious. Even so, the serious ones — after a polite decline – are understanding. Obviously it is a safety issue but cam sites usually forbid it. If you were to be found out, you could be charged for prostitution. If you were to get hurt, the site might be found to be liable for allowing it to happen. Either scenario would be troublesome and harmful to you as a model and your host site.
On the flip side, as a human, do you yourself ever struggle with maintaining these boundaries in any way?
For the most part, my only issue is maintaining a client-not-friend relationship. You’ll accrue fans and regulars who share similar interests and tastes in music. They will come around, maybe spoil you here and there and hope their money or regularity means they can be your friend.
As a friend, they may think they can score freebies or more intimate details about you. I had a man once who dropped hundreds on me and another cam [model], whom I am friends with. He started talking about going on a cruise and how he’d totally cover us if we wanted to go. It was fun to play around with at first but when we finally denied him, he flipped. He threatened us and complained about how we manipulated him for all that money. We never took offsite payments for one. We offered return services when he tipped or took us private, and we were kind to him on the days he didn’t give. I guess we were too kind and had given him some false hope. If he threw enough at us, surely we’d meet him, right?
I am careful now about guys. I tell them artificial details. They know the state I live in, not the city. They know I like video gaming, art and my [dog]. They know if I had been to the dentist or grocery shopping but not a state convention or concert until after I’ve been. I let them know what new games I’ve tried or animes I’ve watched too. It gives them a sense of realism without the chance to find me easily.
Why feel so blue on Mondays when you could feel good with me? ;D
— 🌞Samantha_Squirt💦 (@Samantha_Squirt) July 15, 2019
I see you use MyPornBoutique. It looks like you can create personalized items, sell products as an affiliate and sell actual personal goods. Can you tell us more about the site and their services?
MyPornBoutique will contact you and offer to make you a custom Fleshlight[-like toy] based on a picture or two of your hooha, and mine looks pretty accurate. The shirts and other stuff are photos they’ve pulled off my twitter which I’m not too crazy about because… well, who would want a shirt with my awkward, faceless photos? Thankfully, they do allow for custom art or designs for the shirts, hats and store banner. I’ve just personally been too lazy to adjust anything. The panties are physically mine and when someone orders a pair, they send the address to model to ship the panties. You’ll have to spot the shipping cost but they charge quite a bit for the panties, which you’d get sixty percent of. Oh! And speaking of prices, you can’t adjust them.
A downside to them is that you have to do some advertising yourself. They have the ability, if given permission, to post every so often on your Twitter wall to advertise your personal [toy], but you are required to get the material out too. They generate banner codes to copy and paste onto your cam sites, websites, social media and what have you but sometimes the sites your work on do not allow for outside items to be advertised for purchase. Makes it difficult. I’ve sold two [replica toys] and bought one myself, which I technically got most of the money back for, to check out and use as a raffle prize for my cam fans.
So, assuming you have sites to push it out on and have the patience of ability to make your own product designs, I’d say it could probably work pretty well. If anything, you get it made and have it there to use for prizes. They check their Twitter by the way, which is useful if you want to have the prize sent directly to the man without having your details go with it. Just order a product and message them that you’d like it sent anonymously to the address of the man — however, it is kind of fun to order one to yourself first to check it out.
I mean… this isn't wrong. ;D pic.twitter.com/YDz9odylMI
— 🌞Samantha_Squirt💦 (@Samantha_Squirt) July 14, 2019
What other great work tips do you have?
Menstrual cups are a godsend! Can’t afford to take time off or just want to maintain a schedule? Menstrual cups allow for shallow penetration without a string hanging out. They can also be kept in up to twelve hours if you don’t have a heavy flow. I’ve been using them personally since I’ve been camming, and they got me through a whole semester of yoga. They work pretty amazingly and save a ton of money on pads and tampons.
Also, bidets. They leave ya feeling clean before and after shows and are useful for rinsing lube and other things. And social networking is must. It keeps guys engaged when you aren’t online and keeps you on their radar.
Outside of your career, what are you most interested passionate about?
Honestly, not too much. When I’m not working or working on work graphics and ideas, I’m probably just browsing the internet, reading articles or keeping up with friends. I play video games and watch my shows before work.
In the evening, I spend time with my man. We both go on trips once or twice a year so when we have one in mind, we spend time planning the details of those together. With our dog, we go out to dog parks or dog events all over Washington to keep him healthy and happy. It gets us out of the house too to spend a few hours away from our screens. There are also lots of food and beer festivals we check out with ours friends year round because the weather here is pretty mild. Once a week, we both play D&D to catch up with our out of state friends and have some devoted time together.
I guess I’m just passionate about exploring and friends.
If you could change one thing about today’s world, what would it be and why?
I wish sex workers weren’t so looked down upon. We are physical people with feelings and schedules and responsibilities who picked a profession not everyone could handle. Some people treat us like sluts and unfaithful ladies when really some models have kids and husbands. Sex work takes thick skin, self-discipline and a liking to independence.
I myself am not public about my camming because I feel like it could bite me in the ass later when I finally settle into a different job. My volunteering would probably look down on it too and cut me lose. I want to be able to function as a normal person and not be discouraged for being a strong woman but, until times change, I don’t want to start conversations and jeopardize what I have already.
Erika Chan is a sex positive people watcher (and writer). Email her at email@example.com.