As the end of the year approaches, I’d like to take a break from regularly scheduled pontification and briefly (I promise!) share some personal thoughts about my life, this blog space, and you, dear reader.
This past year has been a wonderfully productive and blessed season for me. In addition to my regular responsibilities at my day job, I’ve been able to contribute writing and editing to several different places. Some of this work has earned income, some has earned opportunity and exposure. In either case, I’ve been blessed to be able to use my voice at a variety of websites and organizations that I greatly respect. This is a blessing beyond what I could ask or think.
In addition to my published writing around the web, I’ve maintained this blog space. This year the blog has generated over 80,000 views. That’s a spectacular number to me, especially considering how few resources have been poured into publicizing what I write here. I am dependent almost entirely on the clicks, shares, and retweets of those who know me through social media.
Whether at this website, or at any number of different sites that I’ve written for in the past year, I am exceedingly grateful to be doing what I love. This isn’t something I take for granted. But it’s also something I realize is precarious. I’m sure it doesn’t shock you to hear that writing is not a profitable line of work. The vast majority of what I write–hundreds of thousands of words–is not compensated in any way. I do not receive any money for what I write here. That means that I spend many hours a month trying to articulate halfway coherent, truthful thoughts for free. As far as I’m concerned, that’s a good thing. But having a baby and a young family to support is also a good thing.
I’ve tried this year to give a voice to a thoughtful, convictional, kind, and helpful Christian worldview. My aim when I sit down to blog is NOT to grab your attention with an overreacting headline and clickbait. It could be that my traffic would greatly improve if I were just a little more willing to accuse, exaggerate, or just be a hack. But I’m not willing, and I’m fine with whatever cost that creates. I’ve probably written something this year that you’ve disagreed with (or maybe many things!). My sincere hope is that even in those cases, you’ve found something hopeful, encouraging, and worthwhile.
If you’ve appreciated my writing this year, particularly at SamuelDJames.net, would you consider supporting it? Below I’ve installed an option to donate any amount via PayPal. This donation is not a subscription. I have no intention of charging for this website, or any of my writing. This is merely a way to support what you find helpful here.
Thank you very much for reading, sharing, commenting, and supporting. These are challenging times for many, and as George Orwell once said, sometimes seeing what is right in front of one’s face is a constant struggle. I hope that in some way this year, I’ve helped you see.