No More Trying to Squeeze Blood From a Stone
changes In store for Dispatches, readers
I hope you are enjoying summer. I am! I’m a little over half-way through my Writers Residency at St. Gertrudes and I have some big news for you. Dispatches is moving!
For some time now I’ve been looking for a new platform to host Dispatches. I’ve been on WordPress since 2007 and it’s gotten progressively more clunky to use and manage. In addition, some folks who follow sites on WordPress do so just to market their own sites. There are notable exceptions but frankly, building an audience that is truly interested in reading posts on WordPress has been like trying to squeeze blood from a stone. So, I’ve moved Dispatches onto a platform specifically for writers: Substack.
Substack professionalizes Dispatches. It has a great reader presentation and gives you subscription choices (free, paid, and founding member), allowing you to choose how often you want to hear from me at a minimum (as you already know, I typically blow past those minimums).
When you enter your email address to “Subscribe” or upgrade your subscription below, you’ll see more details on your options.
Why is Dispatches asking for money now?
Bluntly, it’s time to transition Dispatches into paying at least a part of its expenses or get off the pot.
I’ve been writing Dispatches for a long time. With 180 posts online at Substack now, each one took time to move over to the new site manually in addition to the average time each took to create (some significantly more, some less): conservatively, four hours to write, four hours to research and experience, and two hours to post and respond to comments. That’s over 1,800 hours of time invested in telling you stories so far. I know you didn’t ask me to. I’ve done it for free and quite happily.
But things have changed. I used to freelance for magazines (still do from time to time) but the number of publications out there and opportunities are shrinking. I also have a book in my head that I may actually write some day and that market is changing. Things are different for the Professor and me now too. We’re both mostly retired.
If I’m to keep traveling, writing, and telling you stories, if I’m to continue sharing my perspective on things, I either deplete our retirement fund or enlist partners. Can’t do the first anymore. Can you help me with the second? A paid subscription doesn’t cost much: just $5 a month or $50 a year. That’s close to the cost of one drink a month at Starbucks. And unlike those coffees, once you subscribe, all that Dispatches content, more than 180 blog posts today and counting, is yours to enjoy for a full year!
The move means you’ll see a lot of auto-generated invitations to up your subscription from free to a full access paid subscription. I hope you won’t mind that and that you’ll even take me up on an offer too good to pass up (see below)! If you absolutely can’t do it (or don’t want to), I understand. The tradeoff is that in the future you’ll have limited access to Dispatches posts, podcasts, videos, and the archives. You’ll also continue to see those auto-generated invitations to upgrade to a paid subscription.
I plan to take down the WordPress site between now and the end of summer. If you want to continue to read Dispatches, please transition over sooner rather than later with a paid or free subscription to the new site by subscribing below. TeriMurrison.com is linked to WordPress as of June 17, 2023, but should be switched over to Substack in the next week. Don’t forget to clear your browser cache so you get to the right place.
Can you help underwrite subscriptions for readers who can’t afford to pay?
Yes! If you sign up for Dispatches as a Founding Member for $100, you’ll be helping underwrite a limited number of subscriptions for dedicated readers who legitimately can’t afford a paid subscription. Please do so if you can.
Is there a discount for becoming a member?
Yes! For a limited time only, Dispatches is offering 10% off the annual membership fee for all new full access individual, group, and gift subscriptions!
10% off for one year
must be redeemed by July 1, 2023
only applies to annual subscriptions
In case you’ve forgotten or are new to Dispatches, I call Idaho home (but leave at the drop of a hat). When I’m not traveling and at home in Idaho, I have a part-time day job working to help Idaho’s land trusts and landowners conserve private lands and resources as a heritage for future generations.
My husband, the Professor, is a retired instructor, my daughter is Megan, my son is Erick, and both of them have wonderful partners, Jordan and Karen. I’m a proud Mama to grandchildren here and in Alabama. My dog is Tex, my horse is Chula. Life is good.
I’m a gramma who travels, sometimes alone. I go, I tell, so you don’t have to. When I do, I invariably stumble onto adventures, planned or not. I laugh (I hate to cry). I’m about family, friends, faith, good dogs and horses, cooking, and wine tasting too. And telling stories.
Thanks for being Dispatches’ readers!
I hope this answers any questions about Dispatches’ move to Substack. If not, please contact me. And I do hope you’ll choose a full access subscription - I don’t want to lose you.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart!