I have been fielding emails from many of you since Memorial Day regarding the status of The Daily Dish. I know it’s been confusing, my having kept the same page up from May 26th until this very morning. The lack of daily updates has been a source of anxiety for some of you, and for this, I apologize. I do recognize (and am indeed honored) that many people have come to depend on my website, and I do not mean to disappoint. But for the time being, I am on hiatus.
This post as well as this one provide much more detail as to why I am (at least for the time being) suspending work on The Daily Dish. Without being crass, I simply am being underpaid. I have spent HOURS AND HOURS each week for months working on recipes for the site, shopping for ingredients, cooking, cleaning, photographing, programming, and more. Running, writing and creating The Daily Dish is like working a full time 40 hr a week job for free. In addition to the time involved, it has also been a financial drain, with all of the food, gas and other expenses coming purely out of pocket.
I have thought long & hard about how to support this venture, whether it be through advertising on the site, publishing and selling a physical cookbook, asking for donations. I have up until now foregone ads for the sheer fact that I loathe them. I do not want to clutter my site w/ a bunch of google click-throughs intended to deceive & lure readers away from real content. I despise flashing banner ads – which frankly no one should have to deal with, but especially not those suffering from Meniere’s.
I am still quite wedded to the idea of publishing my own cookbook, but have been unable to make further strides b/c of the burden of updating the website. I simply can’t do both. It took me over 2 years of writing and research before I could even get the site up & running. Maintaining it has been a chore and a half. Now that I am on break, I have more time at my disposal for working on an actual book. Many people have responded favorably to the idea, and I very much welcome your comments regarding one. Would readers be interested in buying my book were I able to get it published? It may be easier for people to work from a book in the kitchen. It is for me. And so, I am exploring it as a viable option.
Just this morning, my dear friend Tracey emailed me another possible solution to my dilemma. A man engaged in a different-but-similar niche website has successfully campaigned the past two years for donations, along the lines of a PBS pledge drive. He has set periodic financial goals to cover his time & expenses, then asked readers to contribute whatever they can. This seems like a plausible solution, but again, I am not sure how readers would react. Would people be willing to pay for a service they have already come to expect and enjoy for free?
Please, if you value the website and the work that I have done, give me your feedback. It is essential for the continuation of The Daily Dish.