Happy Birthday, Tomorrow
Another Sunday, Another Naive Weekly — Observations From The Internet Wilderness.
If it is Monday when you read this newsletter, you read it on my birthday. So I want to take the opportunity to thank my parents for bringing me into the world in 1987.
Much has changed since I was born, but I still find life to be a miracle. So mom and dad, thank you for life and the opportunity to fall in love with Ana, become Uno’s dad and watch white clouds pass over the blue sky.
ASK ME ANYTHING
I’m using the holiday season to answer your questions. Hit reply to this email and an answer will come within the next weeks.
Reader: What is your favorite part of the day?
Kristoffer: Mornings. No matter what I carry to sleep, I am calm when I wake up. Mornings are when my mind feels sharpest. A few years ago, I would get up every morning at 5 AM to start working because it gave me a sensation of being ahead of the day. Now I’m more laid back, enjoying when Uno sleeps until 7 AM. However, I appreciate observing the city prepare for the morning rush when he doesn’t.
In the evening, when the sun settles, I crash like a baby. If I fight the need for sleep, I only get frustrated and overwhelmed, so now I give in and go early to sleep almost every day. Strangely enough, this has made me like evenings better, especially the moment when Uno is asleep, the kitchen is clean, my teeth brushed, and Ana and I have time to talk through the day. This is often the only calm moment of my day. Lying on my back, I soak up the full support of the bed.
Reader: Who would you wish to subscribe to your newsletter?
Kristoffer: I’m grateful to everyone who subscribes to my newsletter. Among the readers are close friends and family, and many people whose work I admire. Today there is no shortage of incredible newsletters, podcasts, films, magazines, and books, so I find it staggering that 760 people want to receive my words.
Soon I want to introduce new segments to the newsletter to add variance and explore the concept of The Internet Wilderness further. For this, I’m making a list of Internet Explorers I’d like to introduce in the newsletter, and I’d be honored if any of them would decide to subscribe. The list includes Laurel Schwulst, Mindy Seu, Mengyi Qian, John Bengtsson, Everest Pipkin, Elliott Cost, Tomo Kihara, Weiwei Hsu, Kicks Condor, Robin Sloan, and your Internet-best-friend.
Reader: Any insights or tips for starting a Substack newsletter?
Kristoffer: Don’t listen to me. But if you do I’ll say:
Commit to a specific publishing time (Day + hour)
Everything else becomes a blur. I publish every Sunday, 7 AM. It has become a routine like brushing teeth (except less frequent, of course). The three times I did Naive Weekly before the current streak of soon three years, I didn’t manage to keep the streak alive for longer than a few months. A bonus for a regular schedule is that it becomes a routine for the readers too, and the most devoted readers can — over time — include what you do in their weekly habits.
Publishing is more important than perfect
Publishing a newsletter (whether daily, weekly, or monthly) is more like marathon training than running a marathon. You must put your shoes on, even on rainy days. When you keep doing it over a long time, you get better, and it gets easier, also on the bad days.
The final tip is from outside my way of working. I publish every single week, without breaks. It is a weird commitment I made to myself, and please don’t challenge it. If I would start another newsletter today, I’d do it in seasons. Maybe seasons of five editions, or ten, it doesn’t matter, something short enough to make it feel achievable and to make each edition significant. Imagine how cool a newsletter you could make if you’d only publish one edition per year? Between the seasons, I’d take a break. Maybe two weeks, maybe four, it doesn’t matter, but it gives you time to breathe and reflect on the newsletter — and to drink good wine in the sun.
And a minor detail: Make a short header reminding people what they are receiving. I start with “Another Sunday, Another Naive Weekly…”, just to remind people what it is that they are reading. Not everyone remembers.
Hi, I’m Kristoffer and you have just read Naive Weekly — Observations from the Internet Wilderness.
Last week this letter was sent to 760 people. Thirtyone are crazy enough to chip in every month/year to support me making time to write. Logo by Studio Hollywood. Print by Luka. Photograph by Ana Santl.