So I was trying to teach a group of K-3rd graders about space science the other day and I had an idea.

Note: this is a Girl Scout volunteer thing. Not something I’m actually trained to do.

I just went with it.

“I’ll be Earth. I need volunteers for the moon and sun.”

I wanted to demonstrate two terms: orbit and rotate.

Looking back, I should have chosen to be the sun.

But there I was, all masked up and instructing one girl to slowly circle me while I spun in circles and orbited a stationary sun.

They loved it.

They got it.

And now they’re all charting the moon phases for a month, watching the gradual change in shadows and reflections.

Some people are jolted by change. They want a crisp vision of the future.

But I get a kick out of the evolution of ideas.

Trying things one way and then another and never really landing at perfect.

I like the imbalance of flux.

My CEO and I were chatting about this tweet storm the other day. It raises a (familiar) question of whether a bootstrapped underdog with a good product can compete with the VC funded SaaS companies of the world. It’s also a warning against entering an arena where you don’t decide on the rules.

Curated and the other Simple Focus Software brands are all bootstrapped solutions with inspiring founder stories and niche, sometimes cult-like user bases. We’re dedicated to those people and the unique ways we serve them, but not interested in getting caught up in category feature wars. We think a lot about how we adapt as the world changes.

How am I going to tie this back to your newsletter?


Don’t let anyone tell you there’s one way to write it, send it, monetize it, or let it evolve.

Create your own success metrics.

Know what winning is to you. Heck, design the game you want to play and play it.

There are so many ways to be successful in life as we spin and round the sun.

Figure out how to be content with each phase of your newsletter as you observe and reflect.

Your newsletter is yours. Own it. Use it to manifest what you want instead of getting caught up in someone else’s unicorn dust.

The links gathered in this issue are intended to help you look at it through a variety of perspectives and keep improving it.

PS It’s great to be back from Spring Break. Can you tell I took some time to stop spinning so fast? Huge thanks to Sarah Colley for stepping in last week.

PPS I hope I’ll see you all at Newsletter Fest April 12 -16. Vote for the top newsletters of 2021 here.


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ICYMI: We now have a Curated Public Product Roadmap! Check out our recent releases and what’s up next.


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Like this newsletter?

Let me know. Reply, email me at Ashley[at], or find me on LinkedIn to hit me with some feedback. I’d love to know what you think.

Also, I’d appreciate it if you shared it with fellow email newsletter creators. All archived issues will be available on, so you can send them the link to check it out.

Have a great week sending, y’all.

Thanks for reading,

Ashley Guttuso