Those of you who have been reading and interacting with Redeemed Reader for more than a year get a gold star from us! In this season of giving thanks, know that we are giving thanks for YOU.
This past year and a half have been fraught with changes and challenges for your intrepid Redeemed Reader staff.
On a personal level, we’ve had babies, moved cross country, written books, served in our families and churches, taught school, built houses….
On a professional level, as far as Redeemed Reader is concerned, we’ve invited our readers into our virtual living room where we can discuss books by a (virtual) roaring fire, cups of warmed beverages in hand. It’s been delightful! But as with all entertaining, much work has gone on behind the scenes. We’ve shoved the dirty laundry out of the way, put dishes in the dishwasher, and donned a fresh apron before welcoming you in.
In an effort to be a bit more transparent, we would like to fill you in briefly on some of that hard work. Approximately two years ago, we began pursuing a partnership with another Christian organization. Both organizations believed this would be mutually beneficial: Redeemed Reader brought expertise and training in the children’s literature realm while the other organization’s existing infrastructure would offer us valuable tech support and marketing finesse. Believing our partnership would also benefit our two audiences–and the Church at large, we stepped out in faith. A bevy of conversations, emails, and templates for new review formats, new site designs, and even new products ensued. As we put forth more effort towards a new and improved Redeemed Reader, we attempted to keep our existing website hanging in there.
In the Lord’s providence, both organizations came to the conclusion this past winter that the timing wasn’t right; the Lord seemed to be leading us each in complementary, but different, directions. We amicably parted ways in March. Almost immediately (although completely unrelated), our existing site was maliciously hacked in April: dirty links embedded in every post, Google search re-directs to nasty sites, and a loss of our old “theme.” The Lord is faithful and provided us some much-needed emergency tech support that enabled us to get back online after a few weeks of frantic, hard work.
We have been hard at work ever since, rebuilding our site, rebuilding our review database, and rebuilding our readership.
We need your help!
Currently, not a single staff person at Redeemed Reader receives any compensation from the site. (Formerly, we paid a copy editor and a person for some administrative and tech support duties.) Instead, we scrounge books from libraries, request them from publishers, and occasionally purchase titles to review. That’s the easy part. There are innumerable other duties and costs, particularly in the tech realm.
Pray for us. Pray that we are wise and discerning, just like we encourage you to be!
Financially support us. Outright gifts are not necessary (but we will not turn them down!). Rather, use the new amazon links in our site (such as those on our Winter Book Fair List!), or simply click through our site, whenever you buy books we recommend or anything else at amazon! We also have an amazon store set up with some of our favorite titles. The small kickback we receive from this has always gone to support the tech side and other miscellaneous overhead expenses.
Offer your services! We are mothers/grandmothers, wives, readers. We are not business majors or web designers. It would be fantastic to build a small list of resourceful readers to whom we can turn when we need guidance, expertise, and recommendations for courses of action. Please let us know if you have expertise in a business, finance, or tech area (such as working with a nonprofit, web hosting, etc.) that you would be willing to offer on a consulting basis when/if we have questions. In turn, we’ll keep a small database of “reader expertise.”
Finally, spread the word! Let your friends know about Redeemed Reader: other parents, grandparents, school librarians and teachers, public librarians who work with children and teens, and anyone else you can think of who might be looking for great books.
With your help, we can grow Redeemed Reader as an organization in order to bring you more reviews, more recommendations, and more reading opportunities for the glory of God.
the Redeemed Reader Staff