Alright, so I’m apologizing in advance if this is a really boring blog entry, but it seems kind of necessary at this point!
As you might have noticed, the amount of content I’m putting out into the world has decreased pretty noticeably. Some of you have been asking if I’m doing alright, and if the lack of articles on my part is a reflection of something negative going on in my life.
So first off, let me just say how much I appreciate the concern! I’m surprised that anybody noticed! And secondly… don’t panic, I’m actually okay – more than okay.
With all the confusion coming from readers, I decided we should talk about what that’s going on in my life as it relates to the work that I’m doing on this platform (and because, honestly, I just really enjoy chatting with you all!).
This past year, while I was attending graduate school, my blog took on a life of its own. With this momentum and the support of my readers, I made the decision to use my writing to supplement my student loans and earn income while I was pursuing my degree.
While LQTU was never monetized (we only receive money from donors through Patreon – PS I love you, Patreon donors!), I was able to secure other writing gigs that allowed me to pay my rent.
Writing professionally gave me so many new skills and experiences that I can honestly say were life-changing, and I was able to build an audience that, to this day, I feel so connected to.
But as my first year in my graduate program came to a close last May, I realized that I felt far more passion for the writing that I was doing online than I did for the MFA program I had signed on for. I also felt no sense of support or community, and instead I felt like an outsider in my program. It became clear to me that grad school was no longer for me.
I made the surprisingly easy decision to walk away from graduate school and the master’s degree that I had once ascribed so much importance to. I decided to defer for a year, and focus on my career and my gender transition.
The decision was easy because I have never felt a greater sense of purpose than I do when I am publishing articles and connecting with readers like you.
But walking away from this program comes at a cost – a financial cost. I had spent the last year in the most expensive part of the country, trying to survive with an astonishingly low income while supporting not just myself, but my disabled partner. Without student loans, I could now no longer afford my rent. At times, this took a very serious toll on my mental health.
Freelancing was not lucrative by any means, and while I was passionate, that passion alone was not enough to support us.
After one too many months of just barely scraping by, I decided to start looking for full-time work. I had been itching to build on new skills and try something new, anyway, so the timing seemed right. And after searching, I was lucky enough to secure a really exciting position at a non-profit.
As you can probably guess now, this sudden decrease in my online presence isn’t because I’m struggling – it’s actually because I have a lot less time than I did before to write and publish! But do not fret: Yes, I’ll still be writing at LQTU and Everyday Feminism. Yes, you’ll even see me writing elsewhere!
I just decided to scale back this fall while I adjust to my new work schedule. Because, uh, I’m still trying to figure out how to work 9-5 and not fall asleep the second I get home.
But that’s not the only reason I’ve been writing less. And this is a reason I think you’ll all be pretty stoked about: I’m in the process of filming a pilot for a new YouTube series that I’m going to be a part of.
I’m teaming up with Ravishly to put out video content about queer issues – which I’m super excited about! – but it’s, unsurprisingly, taking up a lot of time as we script, film, edit, and develop this new project.
This is super cool because that means you’ll not only be able to read my articles… you’ll soon have video content to enjoy, too!
There will be a more official announcement coming in the next few months, so stay tuned. 🙂
And because my life apparently isn’t chaotic enough, I’m moving to a new apartment, I have multiple speaking engagements happening within the next ten weeks, and testosterone may finally be on the horizon!
I can honestly say I’ve never been happier, nor have I ever been so busy. And I think I would be going bananas right now if it weren’t for this awesome online community that continues to support me, check in with me, and encourage me.
So I want to thank you for everything – all of the thoughtful emails, the encouraging tweets and comments, and just for reading my work. Because your support is not only what gets me through the bad days, but it’s also what gave me the courage to walk away from what wasn’t working and to commit to what I’m really passionate about.
Prior to this last year, I never imagined making writing my career, but here we are. And without your conviction and belief in my voice, I don’t know if I would be where I am right now.
And where am I? The happiest and healthiest place I’ve ever been. And I owe that to all of you.
I can’t wait to start creating new content – both articles and videos – and building an even stronger community together.
But for now… I think I’m going to take a breather!
You’ll be getting your usual articles from me here at LQTU (most likely every weekend, either Saturday or Sunday), but don’t be alarmed if I’m not as active or prolific in publishing as I was before. I promise I’ll get back into the swing of things – but it might take me a little bit!
Thanks in advance for your understanding and support and patience. I couldn’t do it without you!
Sam Dylan Finch is a transgender activist and feminist writer, based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is the founder of Let’s Queer Things Up!, his blog and labor of love, as well as a writer at Everyday Feminism and Ravishly. With a passion for impacting change through personal narrative, Sam writes about his struggles and triumphs as genderqueer and bipolar with the hopes of teaching others about his identity and community.