Also, I've got some seasonal ramblings about digital sausage factories and actually taking time off for the holidays.
This makes me thing of how EVERYONE in graduate school at some point experiences imposter syndrome, even though most of us are FINALLY finding a place with Other Nerds Like Us. We're just so used to feeling like the weirdo that when we find the other weirdos, transitioning to being comfortable is a process that for some of us Offbeat Brides, involves some questioning.
Some questioning indeed. I loved so many of the comments on the Othering post. I really am going to make an effort in 2013 to write more of those philosophical-style posts… I got a lot of feedback on the Reader Survey that people want them, and it's sort of sad that I've gotten so busy as a publisher that I make so little time for being a writer.
On Offbeat Families, we had a great inadvertently timely post titled, Monsters aren't real… but sometimes they are. On the heels of the Newtown, CT tragedy, it was hard not to read a little extra emotion into the piece (which was written well-before), but maybe that's why we extra appreciated Natasha's lighthearted take on things:
My son has a stuffed Yoda who sits up at the head of his bed to watch over him while he sleeps. My son believes that Yoda will use the force to hold off the monsters until his own magic warms up and banishes them.
Note to self: get Yoda to carry around with me all the time.
Speaking of light-hearted, we ran a slightly snarking post called How to throw a Solstice Party, Montaninavian style on Offbeat Home today (happy solstice, everyone!!), and the comments have been awesome, including this one from Finnick:
.. oh my god, this post only got better as it went on. The end had me laughing really hard. I look forward to being 70+ and lighting a firepit with a flaming arrow. That's my new retirement goal. In … forty-four years. Look out, pig. I'm comin' for ya.
I posted some initial Reader Survey results, and it spawned a HUGE and very interesting discussion about sponsored posts. Basically, a reader suggested I "strive" to bring in more lower-income and lower-educated readers. My response was this question: "If very-low-income readers are bad for my business model, should I aim to cater my products to them?" The resulting conversation had almost nothing to do with the reader survey, but was HUGELY interesting. If you missed the discussion, I'd suggest clicking here to read along. Joining into the conversation might be a little rough, since the reply threads got pretty maxed out over there, so remember that you can do this.
Oh and wait, what? Is it almost the holidays? Did I almost forget? One of the weirdest things about the kind of work we do here at the Empire is that it Holidays have a way of sneaking up on you. The internet is getting quiet… what's going on? Oh right: Everyone's getting off their computers to actually, you know, HANG OUT WITH FAMILY & FRIENDS! Maybe we should do that too? It's weird: I know other blogs take two weeks off… and I'm half jealous and half like BUT MY SAUSAGE FACTORY CAN'T STOP PRODUCING SAUSAGE! Megan reminded me that a few years ago we took the week off between Christmas and New Years… and I was just like HOLY SHIT WE DID? HOW DID THE PEOPLE SURVIVE WITHOUT OUR DELICIOUS SAUSAGE?! Apparently, I have delusions of delicious sausage grandeur.
But seriously: things will be quieter than usual around the Empire until next Wednesday as my poor, sausage-producing staff are granted a few meager minutes to turn off their smartphones and look up at their loved ones and acknowledge they exist. Then I get the whips out, and the sausage returns!!