As I restart this blog, there’s a few things I want to update you readers about. So many of you wrote emails, comments and tweets thanking me for posting and saying you missed me. It warmed my dark, anti-social heart and brought a smile to my face.
I want to be clear with you about what I am doing and what my plans are. My biggest mistake with my blogging break was that I stopped blogging for five years and didn’t tell any of you that I was stopping. While you might not have noticed immediately, you probably did notice eventually. And while I don’t think it ended the world for anyone, there were probably a few less smiles.
Ultimately, I want this site to be sustainable for me so that I can write consistently for you, my readers and that we’re both getting value here. Here are the big things I plan to work on over the next few months to make it easier for me to write here
Updating the Backend
I’ve been self-hosting this blog for almost a decade. It is a nightmare and a hassle. Customizable WordPress themes are great when you have time and/or money, but I don’t have those right now. I’m taking steps to move the site to a more stable host, and there might be some downtime while I do that.
Once that’s done, that should help to make the site faster and easier to search. I’ll also probably update the design when I do that, so expect a new look for 2020.
Fixing my Email List
Something that surprised me when I restarted my blog was that I still have an active email list. More than 300 of you still subscribe and got an email. Some of you even emailed me back! However, the email list is powered by Feedburner. Let’s just say the experience is antiquated, at best. I am planning to move the email list to a more robust and secure service. If you have a free suggestion, please contact me.
Also, did you know Feedburner is still alive?
Me either! How has Google not killed that yet?
Another option I’m exploring is to reopen comments. To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about this. One of the things I enjoy most is reading and responding to thought-out responses to my pieces. That typically doesn’t happen in comments. I’m open to feedback here, so contact me with your thoughts.
Monetization and Sustainability
When I started The Anti-Social Media, it was feasible to make a living off a blog. I made enough money to pay a few of my bills, but not all of them. I’m sure it still is, but it probably takes even more hustle these days.
Previously, I made money off of t-shirt sales and digital advertising. I estimate I made around $100 a month from those. Those were supplemented with a few additional dollars from affiliate sales and the occasional speaking gig.
With that in mind, I’m thinking about monetization from the start. Now that I’m able to draw and write on an iPad and export in the correct file type, I should have an easier time making the images for t-shirts or other digital printing from the start.
I’m also looking at starting a Patreon so that readers can support me directly, if they so choose. That way, I’m not relying on sketchy digital ads that exploit your data, and I’m not pushing t-shirts at you monthly. I may also look at an advertising model where I sell one ad on the site, and a weekly or monthly email to my subscribers. If I do that, the ad will only be a simple image and won’t have any tracking. I’m just trying to look out for you guys.
I’m looking for ideas here, so if you have a preference, please contact me and let me know.
Schedule and What’s Next
For now, I’m planning to write at least one post a week with a comic to go out on Mondays, That is the minimum I can commit to right now. As I see how people respond, how the monetization works and where life takes me, maybe I can do more! Maybe I can film videos or record a podcast. Maybe I can make a video podcast!
Thanks for coming back, readers. Let’s see where this works out over the next few months.