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Letter sent on Jan 3

The Year Behind and the Years Ahead at The Mission

Yours truly and his trusty sidekick.

Happy 2017 Everyone!

This week’s newsletter offers some reflections, the winner of last week’s contest, and a thank you to…

1. Our readers

2. Writers

3. The team at Medium

Plus a glimpse into the future of The Mission.

Our Year of Amazon Prime winner of last week’s newsletter contest is…

Stephen Smither!

Thanks for your thoughtful comment and pick for the best streaming show of 2016, “This is Us.” Enjoy the 1 year gift membership to Amazon Prime! For the rest of our readers, stay tuned as we’ll be running plenty of contests in the future :)

1. Thank you to our Readers!

It’s been a great year, with a big thanks going out to the tens of millions who read our stories this year! As we speak, we’re passing 200k followers.

A big thank you is in order for all of our readers who have recommended, shared, responded, and told others about The Mission. It makes a huge difference, and you’re helping independent media like The Mission reform and remake media that serves people.

It’s been a blast getting to know some of you and serve you through our stories. If there is ever something you’d like to see published or covered, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We’d love to hear from you!

It’s also been super fun to see stories from The Mission read and recommended by people I’ve looked up to and learned from.

Thanks, Naval!

Even Andy Dunn, Founder and CEO of Bonobos and Red Swan says it’s okay to like The Mission!

For those of you lurking out there, it’s okay to recommend and share our stories. :D

2. Thank you to our Writers!

Second, a big thanks is in order for our incredible writers of 2016 who published amazing stories with us (many of whom I’m excited to now call friends!):

Ellen Petry Leanse– You were one of the first people I met and became friends with in SF, and I’m forever grateful for getting a chance to hear the real stories and history of Silicon Valley.

Benjamin P. Hardy– You’ve helped me learn that taking on more responsibility, (including kids!) is a powerful forcing function to do great work… thank you for that lesson!

Thomas Oppong– You’re a pro, and I’m honored to play a small part in helping to promote your work.

Elle Kaplan– I’ve enjoyed your work and congrats on everything you’ve achieved with Lexicon capital.

Andy Raskin– You sir, are a grandmaster of sales. Thanks for the coaching, and I’m still ready to publish those Pokemon articles whenever you are ;)

Larry Kim– Your content marketing game is off the charts. I’m not sure how you balance everything as the CEO of such a large company, but I have massive respect for you!

Naval Ravikant– As a student of your work, and it was an honor to get to publish your story.

Gary Vaynerchuk– Thank you for publishing several pieces with us. We’ll be sure to “document” in 2017 and beyond.

Maria Camille– Thank you for sharing your story. The life you’ve walked is incredible and awe inspiring.

Jessica Semaan– I’ve enjoyed your work and glad we got to meet up for smoothies! You’ve inspired me to publish my poetry instead of hiding it :)

Sebastian Stadil– Thanks for publishing your story with us. I think you might hold the world record for the fastest time in between publishing a story and getting it optioned to become a movie… congrats again.

Sean Everett- You and Timothy are up to big things. Wayfinding software that mimics biological systems is an inevitability. Own the space, and part of space. BTW… thanks for getting one of our stories in front of Oprah :)

Ed Barton– I’m looking forward to publishing more work by you and the team at Curiscope. It’s been fun catching up when you were in town. VR and AR are going to transform education, and I’m betting you and your team will lead the way.

And for everyone else who has supported and contributed: Ryan Cahill, Jessica Guzik, Riva-Melissa Tez, Zak Slayback, Isaac Morehouse, T.K. Coleman, P. D. Mangan, Clay Rivers, Jon Westenberg, James Altucher, Kayla Minguez, Kate Stone Matheson, Michael Simmons, Srinivas Rao, Heidi K. Isern, John Fawkes, Bryan Johnson, Dakota Shane, Tré Wee, Geoff Pilkington, Michael Solana, Danielle Strachman, Michael P Gibson, Albert Chou, Jaimee Ratliff… and everyone else I ran out of space to mention here…

Also, a big thanks to my wife Stephanie Postles who has helped whenever she has a breather from an insane schedule, and to my parents who have always been early adopters and supporters of anything I do.

3. Thank you to the team at Medium!

Finally, a big thank you is in order for the team at Medium.

Saul Carlin– I enjoyed our walks and talks while circling around the office.

Greg– You’ve got a challenging job. I respect the patience required to do the work you do, and thanks for taking the time to talk.

elizabeth tobey– thanks for making the time to talk and grab coffee!

For everyone else- looking forward to working more together over the coming year and meeting IRL- Andrew Aviza, Madison Kahn, and Kate Lee!

I’m sure Ev is overloaded with @ tags and inbound, but if you’re reading, thanks for listening, the walk, talk, and thoughtful advice.

A glimpse into the future for The Mission…

We have a few tricks up our sleeve for 2017 and beyond. We have more writers coming on board, and we’ll be branching out into new forms of media.

It’s been fun to help play a small part in helping certain writers generate revenue, book offers, and help their work get published everywhere. We’re closing in on some opportunities to become the media company that delivers the largest value proposition for writers aligned with our mission.

There is power in doing, strategizing, planning, and executing without many resources. That’s what we’ve done in the last year, and now as we approach the resources we need, we can appropriately value and deploy them.

We’re still in the early stages of building a media company from scratch. Thanks to everyone who has joined us for this journey, and remained patient with us

In the early stages of a company, we believe that patience and prudence are paramount. We’re building the foundation, culture, and mission that we care about, and we know that enthusiasm will continue to show. We also know that there are coming tidal waves in: culture, storytelling, digital publishing, new demands for audio, video, VR, as well as the collapse of incumbent media companies designed to destroy the human spirit.

The Mission is well positioned to surf those coming waves. We’re honored you’ve decided to paddle out for the adventure :)

If we’re going to mediate a future where we tell stories that inspire humanity to voluntarily evolve, where technology is used as a force for good, and redeem and vindicate the human enterprise… we’ve got a lot of work to do.
But there isn’t any work I’d rather be doing, and we’re just getting started.

Chad Grills