Last week I asked you what you really liked about the blog and what you would recommend we change.  I was gratified to hear lots of things people like and even more gratified to hear relatively few things that people don’t!  I have taken all of your comments to heart and will keep doing things that seem to be working and try to change things that are not.

My big concern in sending out my request for feedback was that our fundraising is not keeping pace with last year, at a time when I want to be doing *better* than last year!  I did get a number of suggestions that were very helpful, and I thank you all for them.

On my part, one of the things I will start doing (in addition to incorporating other changes that have been suggested) is saying more about the charities the blog supports.   I think there is just a general, vague sense that “all the money goes to charity.”  It would be useful, as readers have pointed out, to make that much more concrete.  The donations are actually doing massive amounts of good to support those in desperate need.  I’ll let you know more about that in future posts.

Here let me reiterate that I enjoy doing the blog – making the posts, reading comments, responding to them.  But as I have said repeatedly, if it were not for the charities, I simply wouldn’t do it.  Don’t think I could make the time!  (And, to reiterate, I very much do enjoy the chance to share scholarship with you and to hear and interact with your reactions)

With all that in mind, I would like to make a couple of very strong requests of you.

  • A number of people have said that they would be willing to pay more for the blog, and others have suggested I raise the prices. I am not inclined to raise prices, even though the cost to join has not changed since we started in April 2012.  I don’t want to make the blog unaffordable to those on budgets that are already oh-so-tight.   So what to do?

Here’s an idea.  For those of you who are willing and able to pay more – I bet there are a lot of you out there! – I’d like to ask you to … pay more!  It is dead easy to make donations to the blog, either as a one-time shot or as a recurring donation.

Suppose you think the blog is worth double what you now pay.  As you know, you pay less than seven cents a day.  That, I might mention, for many people is not much.  Suppose you double that.  All you have to do is hit the DONATE tab and arrange for a monthly donation of an additional $25.

Some of you think the blog is worth even more than that.   So why not donate more? Any amount would be deeply appreciated, and in aggregate, new donations could make the most significant difference.

Others of you can’t give that much more.  But even $5/month would be a huge help, especially if a lot of you are so inclined.  So if so, do it!

I’d suggest you do it now.  It will only take a minute of your time.   If you can afford it, just click the tab!

  • Relatedly, the blog does bring in periodic one-time donations. Please think about making one.   We have received donations from $5 to $5000.  That’s a huge range. Do you fall into it?  Can you make a one-time donation?  If so, please do so!


  • And just as important: what would *really* help the blog would be to get a greater number of full-paying members.  I would like to ask you to help get the word out.  Surely you have friends, family, and neighbors who would be interested in the kinds of things that happen on the blog.  It would be amazing if each one of you could simply help one other person to join.


There are two ways you could make this happen.  You could simply convince someone that they would love the blog and should join.  Or you could give a gift membership (or five) to a friend, relative, or acquaintance.  Why not?  It’s easy to do:  Just click “Gift Subscriptions” on the home page.  I think this is one of the most under-utilized options on the entire blog.  Let’s maximize it!  Give some gift subscriptions!

 Thanks so much for reading the blog, contributing your comments, and making it happen.  And thanks for all your comments about how to make the blog better.  I’ll keep trying to do so!