So—cards on the table—this past year has been just a bit of a wild ride.
I don’t know if you heard, but there’s been a pandemic!
Plus, for me:
- I ran into some huge roadblocks with my PhD dissertation right before the lockdown last March. Turns out, reading the Bible with Barth and Bonhoeffer is way different than I expected. (Yes, I can hear all my old Bible profs saying “I told you so!”)
- Our second child, Andrew, was born last July.
- For the sake of my mental health, and to discern whether or not finishing is the right decision, I’m taking a year of “Excused Program Leave” from my PhD for 2021.
- The possibility of full-time employment at Anglican Compass in 2021 fell through.
- I’ve still got a part-time gig at AC, but our future funding is up in the air. If you’d like to sponsor our ministry, please do so via Patreon!
Starting my own content curation online business
Anyway, in addition to (1) looking for full-time work here in the Chicagoland area and (2) applying to Anglican church positions hither and thither, I’ve been considering starting my own online business (while also trying to make Anglican Compass profitable).
Specifically, I want to start something that focuses on content curation (think a curated email newsletter) as a way to
- make money by recommending other people’s products and services while
- learning more about my audience and what they want to buy, so that
- I can develop and sell my own products and services.
Rookie Theologian? I’m not so sure…
That’s partially why, a few weeks ago, I created Rookie Theologian, where “we help busy Christians become better theologians.”. In fact, that’s how a handful of you got on this here email list!
Now, I’m still very interested in teaching the basics of Christian theology to as many people as I can. After all, I believe that every Christian is a theologian, and that there’s no reason why knowing the basics of biblical studies, Church history, systematic theology, etc. should be just for academic specialists!
Here’s the thing, though. I don’t think Rookie Theologian is a good business idea. Sure, I spend a ton of money on Bible and theology books. But I think I’m the outlier there! Although Rookie Theologian sounds like a fun hobby for me, the fact remains that “learning the basics of Christian theology” only really checks off one of these topic profitability boxes (from Brian Clark at Unemployable):
Does your topic affect your audience’s ability
- to make or keep money?
- to start or run a successful business?
- to get, do, or keep a good job?
- to look good, smart, or beautiful in front of others?
- to live longer or have a healthier life?
- to start or keep a relationship?
- to buy, maintain, keep, or use expensive items?
- to avoid life-and-death danger?
- to connect with a higher power?
- to follow an important dream?
- to master a task?
So, sure, Rookie Theologian helps people “connect with a higher power,” but I don’t think that’s gonna be enough to generate a decent income from this kind of content curation.
Am I wrong?
If you think I’m wrong here, please chime in by replying to this email and letting me know that you definitely would pay money for something like Rookie Theologian. And I don’t mean just hypothetically because you think I’m a nice person!
A more profitable idea: Health, wealth, and personal growth resources for busy Christians.
So, this morning, while trying to follow James Altucher’s recommendation to come up with 10 ideas every day, I was spinning my wheels trying to come up with a topic to curate for an audience…something that I’m interested in that also aligns with some of the “Core Human Drives.” You know, the drives to
That’s when it hit me. Instead of trying to figure out how to “pitch” theology in a way that aligns with those drives, I could focus on curating the kinds of things that I already love to read! I’m talking about:
- Health and fitness
- Relationships (marriage, yes, but also friendships)
- AND the basics of Bible and theology
…all curated and summarized from a Christian perspective.
I’ll wade through the content out there and distill things down to just the actionable and helpful tips, tricks, and tools worth sharing.
After all, not everyone has the time to read all the amazing content being produced at places like:
…much less to filter all this content through a Christian lens, discarding what’s worthless (you won’t hear me talking about renegotiating monogamy or the latest get rich quick scheme) while keeping wisdom that’s worthwhile (like learning more about Scripture from the BibleProject or learning how to read and remember what you read from Farnam Street).
Obviously a TON of people are out there creating, writing, and selling about how to become healthy, wealthy, and wise. I don’t feel like reinventing the wheel! But I DO want to help you cut through all the noise and find the valuable information that can help improve your life!
WHAT SHOULD I CALL THIS? Reply to this email with your name ideas!
Again—cards on the table—I’m having a hard time coming up with a GREAT name for this kind of curated email newsletter. I’ve got a couple of ideas, but I wanted to ask you for your input!
Would you please hit reply to this email and:
- Give me your best idea for a name for this kind of an email newsletter.
- Let me know one question/problem you’d like answered or solved in the area of health, wealth, or personal growth?
Thanks so much!