Checking in

Checking in
(Larissa Gies / Unsplash)

It’s been two months this week since I launched this experiment called Zero Day.

Now that I’ve had time to see what’s doable on this platform and what’s doable as a writing pace, I wanted to check in with readers to get some feedback.

When I launched, I intended to publish at least one article each week on Fridays, until I could figure out what publishing pace made sense. But two days into the launch, my father died and any schedule I had planned was abandoned. Since then, I’ve published sometimes once a week, sometimes multiple times a week — such as last week when I published several stories about the Colonial Pipeline ransomware breach.

I also indicated when I launched that all material would be free for at least the first month, after which I’d probably start to make some content available only to paid subscribers.

Now that some time has passed, I’m turning to you to see what is working and what is not, in order to determine how best to proceed with Zero Day.

To that end, I’m hoping you don’t mind if I ask a few questions to help me determine how to proceed. No pressure to respond, but if you do have some feedback you want to provide, you can respond either confidentially by sending an email to or by writing a comment here beneath this post:

Does it matter at what pace I publish stories here?

Should I be publishing on a set schedule or just publish whenever I have a story that merits publishing (even if a week goes by when nothing is published)?

Does the format work for you? Most writers on Substack publish as a traditional newsletter, with a mix of content in each email — original reported news, for example, plus links to interesting content they’ve read or something else. Do you like the style I’ve chosen — publishing each time as a standalone reported news story? Or would you prefer an email with a variety of content?

And last:

Paid subscribers have made it possible to do the work I’ve been publishing here; they’ve also made it possible for everyone to read all content whether they are paid subscribers or not. Do readers think I should continue to make all content free? Would paid subscribers resent paying for content that everyone else can read for free? If you’re a paid subscriber, would you be less inclined to renew a paid subscription if everyone is able to read all content for free?

Thank you for any feedback you feel like providing. It will help me chart the course going forward.