A little while back, I heard about an email newsletter through Patrick Rhone called The Listserve, and it sounded pretty interesting so I signed up. I'm glad I did.
Essentially, what they do is pick a random person every day out of their ever-growing list of subscribers (currently numbered at 23,310) to write about almost anything they want, and it will be sent out to the rest of us a few days later.
The stories told within these emails – which are from people of all ages, all over the world – are often inspiring, thoughtful, and educational, and it is truly a joy to receive in my inbox every day. I can't recommend it enough.
About a month ago, one particular email – titled "Tooting Your Own Horn" – stood out to me in particular. It was written by a guy named Connor Tomas O'Brien, and something about it really struck me, because it addressed something that's been on my mind for a while now.
Here's a quote from the email:
“It’s a shame that, in some cases, those who are most comfortable with self-marketing are those without anything interesting to promote in the first place. Meanwhile, some of the greatest living artists and thinkers are right now almost certainly working in obscurity, lacking the confidence or the platform to show the world what they’re doing.
For those of us that aren’t prone to shouting about ourselves, we risk being drowned out by those that can and do. The presumption is that if you don’t say anything, you don’t have anything to say, but it doesn’t necessarily work that way. Those that are quiet are sometimes just waiting for a gap in the conversation. They’re waiting to be invited to speak.”
Man, it's like he's speaking directly to me. In a world full of people constantly shouting to be heard, my voice feels very small indeed.
Readers may or may not recall that back in December, I started up a membership subscription for this site. Since then, I've not talked about it much publicly at all, nor have I tried doing anything like a membership drive to encourage sign-ups. I merely placed a link in the top navigation bar and left it at that.
The result? Well, let's just say I'm not exactly close to quitting my day job yet.
It's a difficult thing, putting oneself out there and asking for people to support what you do. I've never been comfortable with sales or marketing, but I feel very strongly that writing this site is what I'm meant to be doing.
So, I'm setting my meekness aside for a moment to ask that you check out the membership subscription if you haven't done so yet, or make a one-time donation if that's more your speed.
Any support you can give goes a long way, and is very much appreciated :)