Update on the Blog & Substack

The last year has been chaotic here at Lost Art Press as we doubled in size, bought a warehouse, fixed it up and launched new ways of teaching people the craft. This blog entry is a brief update on… everything. But especially the “teaching people the craft” part.

First let me say that printing good books will always be my No. 1 priority. Right now we have so many books backed up on our printing schedule that we are a bit frustrated. Printing schedules that are out of our control have stalled three books that should – by all rights – be out right now.

Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.

We have poured that frustration into other worthwhile projects. Most of that effort has been with our three “Substacks.” Substacks are just fancy blogs. They allow you to charge a subscription fee, and Lost Art Press gets the lion’s share of the money. What we like about Substack is that we can offer a good balance of free and paid content. We want everything to be free, of course, but we also have six stomachs that now rely on this business.

If you have missed our Substack stuff, here is a rundown.

The American Peasant

This is my unfiltered self. It’s PG-13. And yes, it’s all about woodworking, but it also delves into other issues – mostly deconstructing the BS that permeates our craft. I also post entire chapters of my forthcoming works. Plans, drawings, everything. Readers there have already read my next book “American Peasant” (and have helped to make it better). Right now we’re building a Hobbit Chair together. 

You can subscribe for free or pay $5/month. About half my Substack posts are free. And about half of each paid post is available to free subscribers to read. There’s a lot of stuff to read – more than 260 posts. And it’s some of my writing that I dislike the least.

Never Sponsored

Megan Fitzpatrick and I have collected a lifetime of knowledge about tools. We reviewed them for magazines. We see hundreds of student tools. And we – weirdly – still keep up with the industry out of habit. Our knowledge is mostly useless for publishing books. Spitting out model numbers and details of how certain motors work isn’t useful in a book. It becomes quickly outdated.

But what we know is great for a Substack. So Megan and I are opening our veins and offering our opinions on tools and other products without the threat of any flack from manufacturers. We don’t take free or discounted tools. We don’t do affiliate programs. The tools we own we paid full price for. And I’ve been at this since 1996.

Like “The American Peasant,” about half the posts are free. Paid subscriptions are $5/month. 

The Anarchist’s Apprentice

Our third Substack is the most unusual writing exercise I’ve ever been involved in. This year we hired Kale Vogt, an aspiring chairmaker, to work here. And I’m about to take Kale on as an official “apprentice.” This Substack is journal entries written by me and Kale (and sometimes Megan) about the process. 

It’s messy. Sometimes difficult. But also a chance for everyone to grow. 

The Substack covers a lot of ground, from how to teach the basics to the economics of running a furniture shop to …. Who knows?

“The Anarchist’s Apprentice” is the start of something that I suspect will be important. Or it will crash and burn. Either way, you can be ringside. Half the posts are free. The rest are $5/month.

So Why?

A few people have asked us why we don’t just post all this stuff here on the Lost Art Press blog?

Well, it would be too much – multiple posts a day. And the tone of the blog would flop all over the place. We would chase away readers with my foul mouth, and we would enrage manufacturers with our tool reviews (which I’m actually OK with).

This blog is about straight-ahead woodworking. I’ve moved my personal stuff to “The American Peasant” (much to the relief of some of our readers). The three Substacks are a way for you to pick and choose what you like. Subscribe to all three for free, and you will get a huge amount of information. Pay if you want more.

Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.

News About This Blog

This year has been a technical pit of quicksand for this blog. To remedy the problems, we have moved the blog to a self-hosted site (long overdue) and switched our email notification system to Mailchimp (also long overdue).

I promise we are not trying to make things worse for you, or add layers of advertisements and marketing. We just need to be able to send an email to you and know that it went out. That’s what this is about.

So email notifications about new blog entries will come from Mailchimp instead of WordPress.That’s really the only change.

OK, time to sign off on this administrivia update. And get back to the bench.

— Christopher Schwarz

Source: lostartpress.com

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