I was originally going to create a thank-you video on my YouTube channel to celebrate the 9,001st view here on my blog, but after spending about two hours on the project I realized two very important things:
1. I have absolutely no presence on film. I am much more eloquent with writing than I am with speaking, and I couldn’t really communicate all of the gratefulness and love that I wanted to convey in that video.
2. Windows Live Movie Maker was either programmed by a team of drunk squirrels or a sadist bent on torturing video editors who can’t afford any other programs. I was 85% finished with the editing and the program slowly began consuming all of my video files and turning them into clips of blackness and silence.
At this point I was just about ready to re-film the whole thing anyway in an attempt to make it more interesting and less unbearably long, so when that happened I decided to call the project off and do what I do best: write. (On the bright side, I did manage to make a small “OVER 9000” tribute video yesterday. You can see that here.) 9,000 views is a big milestone, and, to be honest, one I wasn’t expecting to reach in the foreseeable future, so I’ve got a lot of people to thank. Let’s get started!
First, a huge thank you to my best friend Adam Swensen, the man responsible for my blog’s very existence. It was he who, several thousand Internet-years ago in the summer of 2009, suggested that I might enjoy blogging. He has a blog of his own, “The Next Generation”, where he posts inspirational and challenging articles about life and Christianity, I highly recommend giving it a read. Adam, thank you for getting me interested in this whole blogging business and for being so encouraging and supportive throughout the first two and a half years. Also, thank you for being one of my closest friends in real life, and for never failing to brighten my day. I love you, sir!
Next in line for a thank you is the inimitable Jay Lauser. He and I met way back in the day, when my blog was called “Legend of the Dreamseers” and I used it primarily as a platform for promoting my fantasy writing. Jay is a Christian fantasy writer as well, and when he found my work one day he left several encouraging comments and requested that I stop by and take a look at his blog, “Sir Emeth Mimetes”, sometime. I did, it was (and still is) amazing, we kept in touch via comments and, later, via his amazing Holy Worlds Forums (if you’re a Christian and love sci-fi or fantasy you should really check those out), and we became good friends. I haven’t been around Holy Worlds much lately because of the busyness of school, but I still do check Jay’s blog occasionally and I love his passion for God and his penchant for thinking deeply about life. Thank you for encouraging me to keep going when my blog was still in its infancy, Jay, and for giving me so much useful feedback to help me improve as a writer.
On that note, thank you to everyone in the Holy Worlds community who has befriended me and read my blog over the years. I know I won’t be able to name you all, but you know who you are. You’ve been a great help and a big encouragement to me, and I thank you for that.
I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to all of the bronies who have stopped by over the past two months since I jumped on the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic bandwagon with my first Pony Saturday post, “Confound These Ponies”, in February. Since then, that has become the single most popular post on my blog, receiving about thirty hits a day from Google searches and a few friendly folks who have been kind enough to spread the link in various forums and such. While I know that you guys probably don’t keep up with the blog on any regular basis, your visits to my Pony Saturday posts make up over 1/6 of my first nine thousand views nevertheless, so you deserve my sincerest thanks. You guys are easily the most friendly, welcoming, creative, and all-around wonderful fan community I’ve ever seen, and I consider it a privilege to be counted as one of you. *Brohoof*.
There’s one person in particular that I need to single out from this group, and that is the incredible Tekaramity. If you don’t recognize that name, you obviously haven’t been around here lately. Tek commented on my first Pony Saturday post two months ago, and he’s become a welcome addition to the regular suspects around The Author’s Apprentice since then. Shortly after his comment, we got in touch via email and grew to be close friends, and I’m truly grateful to have met him. Tek, thank you for being a wonderful friend, a dependable brother in Christ, and a continual source of encouragement in my life. Much love to you, brony! (Also, for those of you who don’t know, Tek has a YouTube channel filled with top-notch Mario Paint Composer remixes of songs from Friendship is Magic that you should really go check out. Seriously, it’s good stuff.)
Next, and by far the most important, I’m grateful to my incredible, supportive, beautiful, fantastic, loving family. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect group of people to which to belong, and I love you all more than I can express. Dad, thank you for your encouraging and challenging comments, they always drive me to think deeper about the topics that I address. You’re a true man of God and my role model as I grow up and head out into the world. Mom, thank you for being such a source of joy in my life. I love reading your cheerful comments and knowing that you’re keeping up with my writing from home. To all three of my siblings, thank you for not just being my siblings, but my very best friends as well. To be so close to all three of you even after you witnessed all of my quirks and faults growing up is, simply put, a far greater blessing than I deserve. I can’t even begin to list all of the things for which you deserve my thanks, so I’ll just hit the highlights. Andrew, thank you for reaching out to your little brother and being such a big part of my life. Some of my greatest memories are the times that we spent together, and you’ve always been one of my biggest encouragements when it comes to writing. Jonathan, thank you for being the best little brother a guy could have. Growing up with you has been one of the most wonderful experiences of my life, and I consider it a privilege to continue being your friend even as we grow older and begin to head in separate directions. I’ll never stop loving you, never stop missing you, and never stop making sure that you know it. Christiana, thank you for loving me far and above what I deserve. I smile for the rest of the day every time I get one of your letters, and whenever I come home I know that you’re going to be the first one to meet me in the driveway with your biggest hug and a dozen great stories about what I missed while I was gone. I love all of you more than I can express, and if no one else read my blog but you I would keep writing just so that I had another way to keep in touch with you.
Finally, I’d like to thank every single one of you who has read my blog in the past two and a half years. Whether you’re responsible for a large chunk of those views or just one, thank you for coming and making this blog the most fun experiment I’ve ever tried. Dozens and dozens of wonderful stories have shaped the writing of this blog, and hundreds more have arisen from the friends I’ve met and the interactions I’ve had, and I owe it all to you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping to make The Author’s Apprentice what it is today, and I look forward to another two and a half years of adventures with you.
And, of course, my greatest and most heartfelt thank you goes to the Author of my story and every other story in His creation. God, 9000 views means absolutely nothing if you aren’t glorified by my writing. Thank you for giving me this gift for the written word and for giving me this wonderful opportunity to use it, and thank you for writing my story so beautifully so far. I can’t wait to see what you have written out for the next two and a half years.
My love goes out to all of you, and may God bless you,
– Timothy Newton