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A Long-Expected Party, An Unexpected Giveaway
Some Thoughts and Gifts in Honor of My Birthday Week
Hello, friends! This week is the week of my birthday! Not my eleventy-first or anything, but a special day nonetheless.
Instead of a regular newsletter today, I wanted to take the opportunity provided by this special occasion to speak more directly to you, my subscribers.
Not a speech, per se, and definitely not a farewell address (I’m not going to pull a Bilbo and vanish on you all), just mostly a thank you. And the chance for you to get a gift for my birthday. But more on that later.
First: the Thank You
Thank you! Thank you for reading and commenting and sharing and for your company on this journey that Jokien with Tolkien has been so far. I’m already closing in on a year of writing here on Substack and have had a wonderful time every single week creating and growing this digital space for us all to share our mutual enjoyment of Tolkien and Middle-earth!
I’m routinely amazed by all the support and love and encouragement that I receive week in and week out and I’m humbled that by a lot of different metrics you could already call this publication a success. But the most important measure of success is you, readers, and I’m so thankful for each and every one of you and the connections we’ve already made. Maybe the real Fellowship is all the friends we made along the way.
But in my view this is all just a wonderful beginning! We’ve barely begun the “There” in “There and Back Again.” Or to shift over to a closely-related parallel fantasy universe for a second, let’s all keep going further up and further in! I’ve got some fun and exciting—in my opinion anyways—things planned for the rest of this year (including more giveaways!) and am looking forward to all we’ll continue to share week in and week out.
Like I mentioned last week, we recently passed 3,000 total subscribers here, which is astounding to me! Again, I am so thankful for each and every subscriber! The large majority of you are free subscribers and that’s wonderful! I am working hard to make sure that there is plenty of quality content for everyone who subscribes. If you’re a free subscriber and stay that way forever, I never want you to feel like you aren’t receiving value from this newsletter just because you aren’t a paid subscriber! (I’ve definitely unsubscribed from newsletters where the free subscribers got barely any content and every single post was either behind a paywall or contained some sort of sales pitch to upgrade). And if you’re a paid subscriber, I want you to feel like your benefits from your subscription—both in terms of exclusive content and community—and support of my writing are well worth your investment.
I’m truly thankful for every one of you and for the space you give me in your inboxes each week. It’s a joy to get to share about Tolkien, faith, culture, and more with you all and I am profoundly glad to have this online space for our interactions and community.
Now the Fun Part: Some Gifts for You!
First, for those who have been considering upgrading to a paid subscription and getting everything that a free subscriber receives plus the extra monthly newsletter for paid subscribers, access to paid subscriber threads and chats, and Discord server privileges, I have a special offer for you in honor of my birthday week: 25% off a paid subscription forever. It’s only available via this button below:
But if that’s not for you, don’t worry! That’s not the only possible gift for you today. After all, paying for a subscription is only one way to support what I’m doing here each week. Like I often say, you can also support me by sharing my newsletters on social media or directly with other people you think might enjoy them, continuing to read the newsletters yourself each week, and by engaging with my newsletters here on Substack and on social media as well. So at the last minute before sending out this email I thought, instead of me getting more gifts, why don’t I give a gift to someone who shares or supports Jokien with Tolkien during the week of my birthday?
So that’s what I’m doing!
An Unexpected Giveaway
One lucky individual who enters the giveaway will win the a copy of The Lord of the Rings motion picture trilogy on Blu-ray1 (extended edition, of course)! Enter by signing up via email for the giveaway (which I’ll use to notify winners)2 and completing additional entries by actions including sharing it on social media or via email. No purchase necessary to win.
The giveaway will run from today, August 10th, through Sunday, August 13th. A winner will be selected August 14th and I’ll get in touch with them and announce the winner next week.
Enter the giveaway here:
or click on the picture below:
Good luck in entering!
Thank you for indulging me this week as I talked a little more about the newsletter itself than usual. We’ll be back to our regularly schedule programming next week. Until then, farewell! Go towards goodness.
Shout-out and an extra special thank you to Emma S, Athena N, Nimmeron M, and Jumala Y, who all upgraded to a paid subscription this week!
Want to celebrate my birthday but not in the place to support this newsletter on a monthly or yearly commitment? You can always toss a few bucks in the tip-jar and ensure my second breakfasts this birthday week are a little extra special!
Special shout-out also to Rebecca G, who jumped to the top of the referral leaderboard and earned a one-month comp as a reward!
All typos are totally on purpose. Links may be affiliate, which is a free-to-you way to support this newsletter where I earn a small commission on items you purchase.
If you win the contest but don’t have a Blu-ray player, I’ll be happy to purchase a copy of the DVDs for you instead in you prefer.
“Don’t you already have my email, Mr. Jokien?” Well if you’re a subscriber here, yes, I already do. But if I’ve already got it, then you don’t mind sharing it with me again, right?