brownstones

Because everyone loves a good story

I‘m happy to report from the recent reader survey that almost 60% of you think we need to add more cowbell to the blog. SUCH A RELIEF. Its lack has been bothering me for some time.

But I was also giddy to see that so many of you love the idea of featuring readers and your own stories about simplifying. Once I saw that the majority of the survey-takers were digging this idea as much as me, I got to work. (I had this idea back in 2010, so it’s about time I dusted it off the shelf, no?)

But then I got stuck.

Because I couldn’t decide what I really wanted to know about you. This community of readers itching to simplify their lives is six-plus years strong, and there are a thousand different angles I could take this. So? I’ve decided to give you most of the control here.

Much like Apartment Therapy’s home tours, I want to feature you, the readers, and your experiences with living simpler. Big or small, we’re all itching to hear it.


Photo source

What it was like for your family to forego all non-ethically made chocolate.

How you got out of debt.

Why you downsized to one car, and how it’s changed your daily routine.

The moment you realized you were in the wrong job, and what made you brave enough to make the switch.

Why living in a smaller home means more time for travel.

The tricks you’ve learned to keep your kids’ toys organized.

The spring you decided to try your hand at growing your own food.

Why your family volunteers at a local homeless shelter together.

What happened when you cancelled the cable.

The benefits you enjoy from biking around town.

The simple joy you found from organizing a neighborhood block party.

…you get the idea.

Why your story matters

About a year into its inception, I realized this blog was never meant to me about just me and my story. I wrote about simple living not because I had arrived, but because I yearned for it just as much as you do. I still do.


Photo source

I’ve since learned a lot, but in many, many ways, I’m just a fellow sojourner on this road with you. You have things you can teach me. You can teach us.

Your story matters because we need each other, and because we can learn from each other. As this blog tips over to the ten-year side of its first decade and away from newborn infancy, I want that to be truer than ever. It’s still never meant to be about just me.

(This is also why we have contributors.)

This blog’s definition of simple living—living holistically with your life’s choices—is open-ended on purpose. There’s no one right way to live simply.

What’s more—living simply is a journey. None of us have arrived. It’s a process. And in our own journeys, we can share stories about our processes.

Everyone loves a good story. And it might be time to share part of yours.

Be featured on The Art of Simple and submit your story!

How this will work

I’ve created a form for you to fill out (it’s also at the top menu of the blog). As you can see, each submission needs to be about one idea—even if you’ve learned many different things about living simply. Feel free to submit five, ten, whatever separate stories. But I’d like to keep each one laser-focused on one topic at a time.

Photos also matter, because good visuals make a good story even better. They don’t have to be professional, but please take the time to submit quality work. Take your photos in natural light, notice the little details on the surfaces in the background, and pay attention to the angle from which they’re shot. Apartment Therapy has some good basic tips.

I can’t wait to read your submissions. Don’t be shy! If we need more info or details from you, we’ll be in touch. I’m psyched to finally get this going as a regular feature on AoS.

(Oh, and so far, pirates are winning.)

What sorts of reader stories are you eager to read?

Join the Conversation
atlanta buildings

I’ve got questions; you’ve got answers

In the past two weeks or so, I’ve learned that many of you have been reading this blog since its beginning in 2008, while some others of you have been reading for a few days because some friend or neighbor recently passed it along (thanks for that, by the way, friend-slash-neighbor). I’ve also learned that (read more…)

Join the Conversation
coffee

The art of simple, two days later

Guys, the response to The Art of Simple switcheroo has been nothing short of amazing. We are humbled, honored, and thrilled to have you along for the bumpy ride! It’ll still take awhile for everything to line up and be consistent, so thanks for your grace there. But—we’ve made good strides already: The podcast has (read more…)

Join the Conversation
shoes

The Art of Simple

I‘ve written this blog post for days in my head, and now that it’s time for me to ACTUALLY write this post, I don’t even know where to begin. To say I’m excited would be an understatement. To say we haven’t been busy this past week would be a Big Fat Lie. To say my (read more…)

Join the Conversation
sleeping bags

What would you like to read?

Yesterday I started working on a post I’ll share soon; a massive link list of my favorite posts here on the blog since its very beginning, organized by “art” and “science” (I’ll explain why later). Going back in time was trippy for all sorts of reasons, the least of which was witnessing the progress of (read more…)

Join the Conversation