Hiatus

April 16th, 2015
Six years. I started Dan of the Day six years ago, in April 2009, and it has been quite the adventure. I’ve written hundreds and hundreds of inane funny thoughts, and over a dozen advice articles. I wrote a book. I’ve shared hundreds of hidden funny videos. I designed a website, and then redesigned and tweaked it more times than I can count. I’ve built networks on Facebook and Twitter, and dabbled in Google+, Pinterest, Tumblr and Vine. I’ve sent hundreds of emails to a fairly healthy subscription list. I designed and sold silly t-shirts, including creating an entire product infrastructure on my website, only to have Google end-of-life the shopping cart system I had built the whole shopping experience around. I created a business entity and submitted state sales taxes. I’ve spent thousands of hours on Dan of the Day. Basically, I’ve done a lot of junk.

A lot has happened for me personally, as well. I’ve changed careers (more than once), moved to a new house (more than once), and welcomed new children into my family (again, more than once). I’ve started up new hobbies, like my Vintage 3D and gif art projects, and rediscovered old hobbies like photography. I’ve started traveling more for work. My time is becoming more full.

Dan of the Day has been a lot of fun. I love making people laugh, and having an outlet to share my quirky sense of humor with the world. It’s been amazing to see my weird random thoughts grow into something bigger. I never imagined it would turn out as it has. And in all humility, sometimes I open up my book and just crack up. Who knew I could be so funny?

But it’s not as fun now as it has been. Audience growth is tepid lately. I’ve had a hard time building a real community, where fans are commenting on the things I share and connecting with each other. I spent a lot of time finding related funny videos, and realized very few people were even watching them. I switched to images to make content more shareable, and got just a modest bump in activity. My website is not particularly mobile friendly, and could use a major overhaul (i.e. lots of freaking work). Facebook has made my content harder to find, and Twitter, Tumblr, Vine, Snapchat, Instagram, Kik, and on and on require a lot of interaction to build up. Pinterest stops giving much play to my content if I post multiple links from my website from my one account. Google+ is a ghost town. I went to Myspace just now, and what even is that?

I’m a one man band. I don’t scale at all. Every single thing done for Dan of the Day is done by me – I’m the content producer, web developer, graphic designer, business developer, social media specialist, marketer, editor, and publisher. And even if I’m okay at the individual jobs, I kind of stink at doing all of them at once.

It’s not like I can pay anyone to help out either. Between the book and t-shirt sales, and the web hosting costs and t-shirt startup costs, I think I have basically broken even financially on this whole thing. And that’s valuing my time at $0 an hour. I made a conscious decision not to litter my site with banners and Google AdWords and affiliate links. I’m too small to make any money off of any of that anyway.

So long story long, I’m taking a hiatus. I’ve lost the drive, the excitement about being funny and doing new things and growing. Dan of the Day has become more of a chore than a delight. I have enough going on in my life that I can do without an extra chore. Maybe I lack vision, or tenacity, or some magical alchemy that would make Dan of the Day more successful, but whatever. I also lack a private island in the Pacific. You can’t have everything.

Will I ever come back? It’s possible. I’ve actually started on a new book of previously unpublished material. My advice articles are a lot of fun, although they do take a while to write. Maybe I’ll miss Dan of the Day horribly and come running back. Maybe I’ll post a few things when I feel like it. Maybe that will be once a year. I don’t know, honestly, but I felt like it was time to do something official. Consider this something official.

In the meantime, there’s a wealth (using that term lightly) of material on Dan of the Day for you to revisit or discover for the first time. Browse the archives by date or by topic, find great videos, read my advice, or while away hours by hitting that old Random Thought button over and over. Subscribe to my email list if you want to know when I start things up again. And if you really want to get the best of the best, pick up a copy of my book, Zombies Love Pizza – all the best bits are in there.

Until next time,
Dan