A geeky stat-filled, deep-dive reflection on nearly one year of writing on Substack.
This is so interesting and helpful, Jenna. Thank you for sharing your data transparently (I love data AND transparency). As someone who's 1+ month in on this platform, I appreciate your wisdom and guidance.
I’ve missed you all these years after your blog. Your words and voice stay with me long after I read them and have helped me grow in the most unexpected ways. Your courage, perspective, discipline, honesty, vulnerability give me courage and things to think about. You once wrote about your marriage and being the breadwinner and it redeemed my own view of my marriage and being the same. I will always be grateful to you for that. The way you reflect on the past and the present is unlike anyone else. I relive parts of my own life when I read your experiences. There are many others like me I’m sure who followed your blog and felt like they lost an irreplaceable friend when that went away. I hope they find you here.
One day, I hope to be a writing/blogging pro like you. I know you have 20+ years of experience and it shows! Your threading of words and thoughts are stitched together like a handmade quilt.
Catching up here. I'm so glad you continue to write. I've always loved the range of topics you covered on your blog. Looking forward to following you on your new journey on substack!
Thanks for sharing your journey and insights! It's always inspiring to hear about your experiences.
Great reflections and lots of shared sentiments in this piece. I agree that’s Substack has started to feel like the other platforms and it’s harder for smaller publications to receive the attention of bigger ones. Also, I asked how does one get featured plenty of times and never received an answer. So i am intrigued by the future of this app.
Thank you, Jenna, for allowing yourself to be vulnerable and hitting that publish button each week. I was so sad when Sweet Fine Day came to an end. I looked forward to your weekly posts and beautiful photos. I am so glad you’re continuing to share your journey with all of us here. The email I receive in my inbox each Wednesday is definitely a highlight to my day. Thank you.
I'm still blown away that the topic of menopause caused so many to unsubscribe. It's exactly the type of relatable content I'm here for! Thank you.
You were one of the first blogs I started reading when I stayed home with my kids, and I'm gonna follow you wherever! You were one of the only bloggers I saw actually speaking about budgets and tough decisions, and small apartment living. Thank you.
Really dug this discussion; thank you!
Same, yes, yes, same, same, YES! I think a variation on that every time I read your newsletter. “Wariness” is the perfect description for my measured enthusiasm. I truly appreciate Substack and their biz and cultural goals and do not begrudge them growth needs. I also felt some skepticism creep in as I read their recent “here’s why OUR algorithm is good!” I just found one of my books (inspired by my community blog) in a dataset of pirated content used to train AI systems. So yeah, my trust has taken a hit. But I’m not really sure what to do about it beyond continuing to extend my hand and heart to readers and other writers, like you, who believe in these connections. It may never amount to more than a few bucks per hour. Or maybe it will in ways that have nothing to do with Substack. But I know it matters. It’s hard in all the ways you very eloquently describe, and it matters.
This was an enlightening post. As a smaller newsletter writer who started publishing about the time you were featured, I can’t believe all that’s happened in the past 10 months.
I too haven’t grown exponentially, I haven’t been featured (yet?) or had any huge jump in numbers. My growth is organic, slow, but steady, and I’ve gained just over 350 subscribers so far. I’m pretty happy with these numbers, but it’s hard not to compare myself to others sometimes.
In any case, thanks so much for being open and sharing your experience!
Hi Jenna! Here are my thoughts from a paid subscriber (reader) but not content creator.
I follow you from your blogging days. I’m white, divorced, my son is bi-racial, my ex (and friend) is Hispanic/black. I only say this to to “remind” people that what may look like a white reader may have a very different life perspective.... that said, my beliefs are more conservative than yours. That’s perfectly ok with me. I enjoy and pay for this content....until I don’t.
I don’t believe it’s a binary world. I have family members that I love but may write a very different blog than I would read (or pay for). Lots to think about....as usual. Peace!
I love your writing, and want to give it the time it deserves rather than just skimming it. For that reason, I actually have quite a few of your newsletters left unread in my inbox because I haven't had the time to get to them yet. But when I do, I really enjoy them.
This was a fantastic (and fascinating) read. I love the stats, as well as your perspective after decades of blogging. I think I found you in one of the "Office Hours" chats before those got too crazy to engage with--so happy I did.
I don't love Substack, but I love reading your words.