Does A Newsletter Really Matter In The Long Run?

by - May 14, 2016

I have a newsletter.

Yes, I know, it's very vain and on-trend of me.

It's also a laborsome toil to put it together every month and it brings forth very little reward.

{Heaven help me if you should think I'm trying to belittle those beautiful, faithful subscribers I have amassed BUT to say their numbers are few would be an embarrassing truth I don't really wish to impart..though ACK! I just did...}

does a newsletter really matter?

What is it about newsletters anyway??? I started mine because Every Single piece of advice to writers I've read has said: start a newsletter, build your email list, it doesn't matter how many Twitter followers you have—what matters is who lets you into their gmail accounts.

Bah Humbug!

I have less subscribers than weeks I've had a newsletter and I am loathe to think this should be some universal declaration—that because I have small numbers my influence is therefore inconsequential.

Because you see, darlings, my obvious goal is to change the world. With words. And my wicked wit.

And yet 'the experts' tell me I am invisible without an email list.

So here's where I'm at: I am putting all those know-it-all's into a bowl. I will mix them with a wooden spoon until they are not but thick meringue and then I shall throw them like snowballs onto the barn roof where that nutty squirrel will come and get sugar-drunk on their condescension.

In the interest of full disclosure {and because I value honesty above all else} I don't really mean a word of it. Well, I do, but not to the degree my grumpiness is pouring out of me. It's just one of those moments that happens upon a writer every so often...when we drop our pen and cry up into the silent sky: WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN??!! AND IS ANYBODY EVEN LISTENING??!! And if you've been with me at all this week {following along in other social media platforms} IT HAS BEEN A WONDERFUL WRITERLY WEEK for me and I have no business having such a public and embarrassing fit of insecurity. 

{Also, I'm reading Jane Eyre right now and it's very possible she's the one typing this through me right now...yeah, that's it...I feel her snappy attitude swirling through me like a hot soup.}

So. In conclusion, I declare before this sweet assembly of lovely eyeballs who do see me, that newsletters are only important to the people they are important to and I refuse to fold beneath the pressure to measure my success by a list of strangers. 

I don't want numbers. I want friends. I want readers. I want relationship.

I'm not quitting my newsletter. I'm just not going to write another one until I feel like it.

And that could very well be tomorrow because I plan to wake up far away from this funk, remembering that I write because it satisfies my soul, that the only fan I need is myself, that words are a balm that calms all worries, AND THAT I HAD AN EBOOK REACH #1 THIS WEEK in the Amazon Kindle Store!!! 

Dear Reader, I beg your forgiveness for this graceless rant but I also remind you that I only ever promised you the truth. So, you're welcome. 

And if you need to discuss my mental break, please do it in a hushed manner, behind cupped hands, with junior high whispers and rolling eyes so that I might go fully over the edge, move into my barn and live out my days, a recluse with a typewriter, staring madly out the suicide door.

Oh, the tales they would write about me...

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  1. I appreciate your candor on this subject. In the end, would you want your "success story" to go, "...and so I did everything everyone said to do"? Does any "success story" ever go like that?

    1. Yes! I love this!!! I don't want to just do everything everyone says to do. It's funny how I feel like I need permission to do that. Thanks :)

  2. I agree with your rant. It seems unlikely that an author's success is solely based on the size of their email list even if that is the main bit of advice given out. Do what suits you best, It seems to be agreeing well with you :)

    That being said, I enjoy your newsletter so I hope you send one out again.

    1. You're the sweetest! I was thinking about you as I wrote this and some of the (frustrated) conversations we've had about this very thing. Here's to making our own way...wherever it takes us :)


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