214 Comments

To help organize the conversation, please use one of the following emojis when you start a new comment.

🧠 - when sharing strategy or advice for fellow writers

✏️ - when asking questions or seeking feedback from fellow writers

🟧 - when asking a question you hope the Substack team can help answer

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🟧 - I'm about to port my Mailchimp mailing list over to Substack. I've been building this audience for over 7 years, and I've built trust and confidence in them by sticking to my promise of one email, every week for free. I've pruned this list of hard and soft bounces over the years, and have an open rate of 51%.

✏️ 🟧 1. I will still send out one email per week for free through Substack. I do want to ask them if they would consider going paid to support my work and get extra content. But, I worry that by jumping platforms, and asking them to pay, I'll lose a big chunk of them who don't understand that I'm not going to be charging them if they don't want to pay; ie. They'll still get a free, weekly email; just not perks, bonus material etc.

🟧 2. If I add their emails to my substack list, do they get a notification in their inbox that they have been subscribed manually? (If so, am I in danger of confusing/angering them, pushing them to unsubscribe by switching gears after so many years?)

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✏️ Hi all. I've noticed recently that if I like someone's article I get a pop-up asking if I want to take out a paid subscription. I don't really like this. I've paused payments on my substack at the moment (health reasons) but is there a way in settings of turning this off? If people are harangued for payment just to like something then it could dissuade engagement.

Or can you substack folk show me stats to say that it is wildly successful at converting?

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🧠 I've been using Substack to bring articles I'd previously written to a wider audience. I'm a freelance writer, and I'd been publishing guides for freelancers are content creators on my portfolio website in the "blog" section.

But, I wasn't getting much engagement there - the posts were doing fine in search, but there wasn't really any feedback or indications that readers were getting anything out of them. So, I decided to move to Substack, and it's been revelatory, for a few reasons:

- I can write in a much more personable tone and speak to people directly. Although my posts are focused on running a successful content creation business, I can make the tone less business like, and more like "we're in this together, let's figure it out." This makes the posts more of a joy to write.

- I can get immediate feedback on my posts, through likes, shares, and comments. This inspired me to keep writing. Some comments have also created ideas for new posts.

- I don't have to mess around with things like website optimization, formatting, etc. Substack does all of that, and does it will. It reduces the admin overhead, so I can focus on the creativity.

- All of my content is currently free, but in the six weeks I've been doing this, I have also picked up a handful of paid subscribers - bonus!

- The discipline of regular publishing does a huge amount to get me to sit down and actually write.

Overall, moving to Substack has been a great experience. I wish I'd done it sooner!

-

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🟧 ✏️ I'm brand new to substack, and I've got a lot to learn about using it and maximizing its potential to grow my business. For now, I'm most interested in using it to test short istories, including Flash, that aren't in the main stream of the novels I write. The objective is to see if there's enough of a audience to go all in with them. They're all for western historical fiction.

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🟧 To the Substack Team. It’s not possible to underline text in a blog post. Can we get that function implemented?

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Why is "Substack" flagged as a spelling error?

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🟧✏️ Thank you so much for this space! This is long and huge. TLDR: My writing is a Jackson Pollock splatter painting from 37 years of writing that I don’t know how to best organize on here. *tiny-cat voice: help meeeee!*

Also. I was agented and working through a revision for a Big 5 editor when brain traumas 2-4 happened. This option is probably not for me. I HATE what the Amazon/socials algorithm rigamarole does to my author friends. I’d love to find ONE home that works with my health demands and what I write. Hence why I’m here.

I’m migrating 6 years of publishing my ginormous blog experiment (which I was getting feedback and gut feelings that I should probably segregate by topic once I gained a rhythm) and from another platform where I tried my hand at serializing one of the gobs of novels collecting cyber-dust in my computer. That’s been fun but it’s the wrong platform.

I’ve had some people say, “OMG these are really different audiences with different goals. You need to have multiple Substacks.” And I’ve had others say, “No, just use Sections. Don’t compete with yourself.” Here is what I’m going to be gradually migrating (NOT in a Go-All one click), and the infancy of its initial setup:

Under my 30 year dance stage name, Isidora Hart:

--My 5 Elements dance system, which mutated into the...life system that keeps me organized, inspired, healthy and as sane as I can get in a world that often looks insane to me. 🤪 Art, nature, creative process, health, curiosity, tools & toys for work/play.

I have never wanted to publish my fiction or memoirs under my dance name, esp because it all covers NSFW and 18+ topics, and the memoirs are not primarily about being a dancer. I’m equally a writer and a martial artist.

So under this Stack, Alexx Hart:

--My Damsel to Dangerous memoirs: the journey from doormat & punching bag to black belt & beyond. So this has a lot of touchy topics like domestic violence, childhood abuse & bullying (undiagnosed neurodivergent on CPTSD), the whole gamut of the MeToo arena, and everything I do to deal with all of that.

--Interwoven in that is my 22 year journey with 4 brain traumas (drunk driver, assault, the year of chronic seizures it gave me, and another rear ending) and bodily injury while being a professional, internationally touring dancer and long term martial artist. Again, touchy topics--like anything regarding disability is.

--My fiction that revolves around similar topics, set in Earth-based, modern eras.

One of the biggest questions:

It was heavily suggested that I create a separate publication under this name to serialize my Fantasy fiction:

--The novels & novellas all set in Greek mythology.

--My sprawling fantasy Gladiatrix series

--My other series: Mists of Avalon meets Memoirs of a Geisha set in Brigadooned feudal mixmash islands.

--That other series about the psi-experimenting Fascist society that accidentally blows up said islands.

--Yes, all my worlds are actually a multiverse.

So I’m still dealing with many of the same topics, just through the lens of fantastical fiction. I’m already going to have to put these different worlds into Sections. If I want them posted in the Library 😻🙏🤓 I’ll have to have a Section for each book. 😱😱😱😱 I would require drop down menus for my drop down menus if I put all that in one Stack.

So there’s the Pollock painting. We’ll see how much of this I can ever publish before I die. But I need to set it up correctly before I start loading anything.

Thoughts? (“Just pick ONE thing” is not an option. This is a long haul game, and I hear this is the place for that.) This is why I require clones. 🤪🙃🤓 If you got this far, thank youuuuuuu!!!!!!

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🧠 - My substack is all about Christianity in the original sense of the Word without the unnecessary frills of worldly wisdoms. I would be glad if l could find like minded writers here that would like to collaborate with for something meaningful....

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✏️Ever since I joined Substack, I have had a lofty goal of generating revenue for myself and living a better life as a student, all while making my mother proud. 😨 I searched high and low for jobs that could help me achieve this, but unfortunately, I was met with rejection and unresponsive employers. Some individuals even suggested getting involved in fraudulent activities, but I consistently refused, knowing that my conscience would haunt me regardless of any luxurious lifestyle I might obtain. Moreover, I value my reputation and would rather endure hardship than engage in actions that would taint it. Instead, I decided to focus on developing my writing skills, as I have a deep yearning for it. I greatly admire the creative abilities of those who can produce exceptional content on various topics. Despite not considering myself innately gifted in this area, I have been working diligently to improve my writing skills. In addition to studying electrical and electronics engineering at school, I have extensively read about economics and marketing, which has further fueled my passion for writing. The ever-emerging world of technology has particularly boosted my confidence in pursuing writing as a career. AI tools have proven to be immensely helpful in my writing process, aiding me in conducting research and publishing my work. As a young and aspiring entrepreneur, my ultimate passion lies in empowering individuals, helping them discover their strengths, and unlocking their full potential through the power of digital content creation.

With honour and respect, I really need an advice because I'm currently having a dilemma and this is navigating me to some things I have never done. How do I reach my goal with substack?

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Quick question: When I import the CSV file from my other newsletter program, it looks like Substack will send out my welcome email right when I import the CSV. Is that true? If so, I don't want to import the CSV until the Welcome note is totally set, right? 🟧

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✏️ Hello! I’d love and appreciate feedback on my short description. Is it clear? I’ll gladly return the favor for anyone who kindly (and constructively) critiques it!

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I accidentally set up two accounts. How do I get rid of the second one, the redundant one, michaelgurian626, without deleting the correct one, michaelgurian?

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On podcasts, is there a way to tell how far people listened in to the episode, or just whether or not they downloaded it?

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Perhaps I'm atypical, but I'm not on Substack for the money. The little I could earn here won't make a difference in my life. But I very much care about getting my ideas out to the world, and I just don't know how to do that.

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🟧 - I'm having a technical problem and am unable to find how I can reach out to someone from substack. I checked this page https://substack.com/contact and it didn't help. How can I find support? I'll write about the issue here anyway, in case someone sees this:

I have a particular blog post in drafts that keeps refreshing every 2-3 seconds, ever since I've changed my website theme. Because of the constant refreshes I'm unable to write on it. It is the only post in my drafts that is doing this, and it doesn't have any video/images on it. How do I fix this? Any suggestions are welcome.

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🟧 - Any plans to have a code editor (not the one that's available now which is too limited) so we can add code with proper code formatting and additional features available on other platforms which support displaying code? At the moment, I'm having to create images with the code to show in the articles. As there are more and more technical/coding writers, this is becoming really important for us. It's a significant problem and restriction, at the moment

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Dear Substack friends, In the near future, I intend to set up a free Substack account just to be able to discuss topics of mutual interest with far-flung friends.

For RIGHT NOW, however, I need to DELETE an account that was automatically generated FOR ME when I went through some portal to answer someone's online question about something.

Can someone there please get back to me and assist me in this task, which I know will be simple for you. This Substack account is linked to this email address.

Sincerely, Stephen Badrich

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🟧Hello! Our nonprofit is launching a newsletter to have an organized way of communicating with our community. We operate globally and would need to provide content in 6 language translations (and likely more later). We've looked into Substack Sections but found that getting everyone to edit their subscription options in settings is a little challenging. Are there other options you would advise us to try? Thank you!!

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I'm having trouble using Substack - need help. What I want to do is write whatever in Chapters and e-mail them to my list of e-mails that I can add to anytime. I will get comments back from who I sent the emails to and maybe from Substack as well. Eventually i will have several chapters and it will lead to paid subs or possibly books.

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I need tech support. Photos in my post are not showing on phones--they are fine online. Is there ANYONE who can help? or tell me where to go for help?

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✏️ I’m already switching over, but I have a problem that I hope somebody can solve for me. Is there any way to edit an existing post from my phone? I’ve tried in both the app and from the web, and can’t see any way to do that. Which really sucks when I’m out somewhere and realize I need to fix a typo or clarify something. I’m not a newbie in technology at all, but maybe there is something obvious I am overlooking. :)

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🟧 ✏️ This might be a long one, but here it goes.

I've been on Substack for a year and I LOVE it, but I'm willing to admit that my lack of a desire for any kind of genre is making my current Substack a little bit of a mess in places. This is particularly the case with my writing about writing, which has little to do with the theme of the rest of my writing.

I'm a high school English teacher and I have no desire to leave the classroom right now. I'm working my way back into loving what I do, I'm good at it, and it is stable employment. But I want to think about the future, when my kids are out of the house in eight years and we consider what being empty nesters looks like. I would also like to supplement our income with both my regular writing and possibly something else that could grow into a genuine side-gig.

Like I said, I'm good at teaching writing, not the business of writing, the actual act of writing. I'm contemplating spending a day (because I really only want to spend a day on this) over my summer break starting a second (or third, if you count my podcast) Substack for just my writing about writing and moving the writing I've already done about writing on my current Substack over.

While I would continue to give book updates on my current Substack, I could slowly build a newsletter solely dedicated to the act of writing. I don't see me doing it regularly. Instead, I would do it as I had time or as the inspiration hits.

I hope all of this makes sense. Any thoughts? Words of Wisdom?

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I get around 5% of my emails that are not delivered. I don't know why. I understand when an email is delivered but not opened, or a very few are dropped. What should I do with those that are not delivered? Ignore them and hope they will be delivered later, or on the next email? I shouldn't delete them, right? Would appreciate any pointers -- thank you.

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🟧 - Hello, I've been writing for over a year and encountered my first week of not being able to post my full newsletter this week due to technical issues. I received a network error and a post too long message. I was able to post half my newsletter after much struggle but when I now go back to try an edit and add parts that were not allowed in initially I still receive these two messages. I don't know how to trouble shoot this problem as googling and substacks internal help area has not helped.

Is there a community of tech support that I can talk with somewhere? I sent messages to Substack but after three days of the same messages am becoming increasingly worried.

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🧠 So far I've been pretty amazed by my switch to Substack. I've never had any audience to speak of for my little blog posts, which are rare anyway. I added a few friends to my substack (about 5) and thought that might be my only audience for all time, but then I posted one insignificant comment on Office Hours, and suddenly I now have 19 people who want to see my writing in their inboxes. 19! There is nothing more motivating for me to write, I have to be honest, than when people consider it to be worthy of a space in their email inbox. I'm absolutely thrilled!

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I.m 81 and not very techie. How to I read or hear Steve Bryen

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🟧 I’m in the UK and am in the process (hopefully) of creating a number of Substack publications for various related but associated organisations. This will involve multiple contributors. I’m looking for a UK based tech person who I can talk to about how best to achieve this.

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Is stripe the only way to get paid on Substack? Venmo? PayPal? Is Stripe secure? They asked for my user name and password to get my money?

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Thanks Aaron. It creates an odd effect within Pages (vs. Posts).

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I have personal Substack blog which has gone from zero to fifty in six months. I also run a Mailchimp newsletter for a local association. While not private, it's certainly not something that a wider geographic audience would care about. Anyone have experience running that kind of thing on Substack?

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How can I embed a url?

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Thanks for answering, Mike. You got the idea. And said it clearer than I did. I'd like either

1. The Section name and/or logo showing up in emails from that section. OR

2. To have Section-specific banner images.

I think you're saying that neither is possible yet. I'm creating a kind of work around but like you say, it'd be a great feature. Thanks again.

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I have a question outside the box about content. Under the settings link, then the website tab, I added a new link (let's call it football) to the navigation bar. I can't see how to add posts under the new link (football). The pages section doesn't seem to be the right path to tie a post to the navigation bar.

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✏️ ❓❓❓On plane so don't know if Hours still open but I have a question re Sections that keeps stumping me. How do you get the Logo/Name of the publication to show up in the emails? I would think that after entering the "Title" and "Newsletter Logo" it would happen but that's just for the main title page of the section not even the web link. I'd be fine if I could even just have at least the logo next to the titles in the posts for that section just like you have calendar image above next to "Writer's Office Hours". I like the idea of Sections but to get it to work the way I want it seems I have to create a new publication instead? Any Section experts out there? I'd be happy to pay for your time to guide me through this. ❓❓❓

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The link came up "unauthorized" on both Firefox and Safari. Thanks for responding.

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🟧 Question on CSV file of my current newsletter subscribers and importing them into Substack. Will Substack automatically send my Welcome email message to all subscribers in the CSV file when I import them? That's how I'm reading the instructions from Substack. If so, I don't want to import the file until I'm 100% ready.

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Here's why I like Substack. I'm 87 years old and I'm not trying to make money from my posts. But since Substack doesn't charge maintenance fees, my posts will be there for posterity even when I'm gone --for the foreseeable future anyway. I have proposed a more permanent solution to the problem of preserving one's writing at my Substack "The Perpetual Digital Archive" at https://paulabrahams.substack.com/p/the-perpetual-public-digital-archive. Unfortunately, in the context I'm writing this in, I can't insert a link as I would in a post.

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I use a Galaxy Note 10 with Aquamail software. I thought it was only me but recently a subscriber, also with an amdroid, said he had the same problem. I'll be gad to send a screenshot [of the vast blankness] if there is a way to do it. And thank you so much for responding.

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How do I contact support? I can't find any support or chat feature on the site.

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I joined Substack with my newsletter, "sportsintheav.substack.com". How many articles can you have on your news letter with images?

2. How what size should your picture be on the home page, so the heads of the pictures don't get cut off?

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🟧 asking a question I hope the Substack team can help answer: I'm trying to get started. Made my first try at signing up and now have a substack named Nan's Substack. I would like to name it something else. How do I rename?

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Yes. And my second question is about how paid members are counted. Why hasn’t anyone responded to my questions after so many days? Today is the 4th business day since my initial submission.

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🟧 I've been using Blog/Medium and considering substack since there are writers here I like. We will be publishing on behalf of our user community across nine distinct topic areas. When can I get an overview, including onboarding and support?

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May 25·edited May 25

🟧 ✏️Hello! I am planning to start a fiction blog and I am considering Substack vs. an independent blog. With Substack you have the benefit of subscriptions but lose the ability to have advertising, sponsorships, affiliate links and e-comm (store). Is it possible to have both? I could publish content on SS first and my own site two weeks later, to give subscribers the benefit of seeing the content first. Anyone have thoughts on this? Thank you.

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I can't figure out how to copy the right emoji - I don't have an emoji keyboard.

I want to import stories from Medium, but the Substack editor is lame compared with the one at Medium. Specifically, I want to mark divisions in my article, but not with named sections. Dropped capitals serve this function well. The Medium editor has them; the Substack editor does not. Are there any good substitutions until the cavalry arrives?

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✏️🟧 - New here and exploring. Unfortunately, I’m not receiving any response from Substack support regarding questions I submitted days ago. Is Substack support always this slow? No one responded to my Note about this issue in the community either. Not what I expected. -- https://substack.com/profile/99922444-tony-mars/note/c-16508139

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🟧 speaking with a number of academic societies I wonder if substack has given any thoughts to academic publication hosting as its already far more accessible. A combination of a more simplified and accessible article and a more detailed journal.

✏️ when starting out what have you found to be the best tool to connect with other writers?

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Is it the best place to promote switching to Substack on the platform itself? Seems like it won’t go much outside people who are already here.

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✏️ 🟧 Given the fact that the GDPR disallows Brits to bring over subscribers unless they have opted in, I was wondering if anyone has hit upon a great way of enticing lots of people over. Thanks

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