The future of Cartoon Gravity

Some thoughts on where we go from here.

The future of Cartoon Gravity
Generated from Dall-E with the prompt "The republic of newsletters".

That's a wonderfully ominous title, isn't it? But actually, I'm not going anywhere (I might leave Twitter, but that's a topic for another time). What's really happening here is that I'm thinking about how, when and where I post Cartoon Gravity pieces.

This was all kicked off by reading Cal Newport's piece "Neil Gaiman's Radical Vision for the Future of the Internet", and noting that the level of worthwhile engagement on social media seems to be falling, for me at least. I like the idea of being "public" in some way, but I think I prefer talking to a smaller, better-curated community than Twitter, BlueSky or Threads provides.

The resurgence in blogs and newsletters is great, and I think it points the way to a much better, richer, less destructive ecosystem than social media.

But at the same time, writing the Cartoon Gravity newsletter always feels like a mountain to climb. It's fun once I get into it, but it always sits on my ToDo list for ages because it takes a lot of time and always seems tricky to schedule. That's why the newsletters are so infrequent.

So what I think I would like to do is to stop writing "numbered" newsletters that attempt to encompass everything I'm doing and thinking about (and that make me feel guilty when I don't get to them) and instead write shorter pieces as and when (and hopefully with more frequency). The question then becomes how these should be delivered...?

The option exists to post these on the site and not trouble anyone's e-mail inbox with them, but I wonder if anyone currently finds those?

So, I'm proposing a mash-up of what happens currently; I would like to add posts to the site as and when they occur to me. If they are just little things, interesting links or whatever, I'll just post them and let them be found. Anything that feels more substantial will get e-mailed out as well. I suspect the result of this will be more e-mails hitting your inbox, but they will be quicker to read/easier to ignore. I think they will also be more fun to read (and to write).

That's the strategy I'm going to try out over the next few weeks/months. If it bothers you, if you're getting too many e-mails, or if you feel like you're missing stuff that is getting posted solely to the site, then shout; I get anything that is sent in reply to these emails, and there are places to comment all over the site.

I don't want to leave you empty-handed, so here's some weekend reading:

Have a good one.