Justin Duke

Side Projects: July 2017


  1. Buttondown continues to grow, as does Spoonbill.
  2. Consolidated my web stuff. This site is better than ever, Village Blacksmith is nice and clean.
  3. Still launching dope stuff on Buttondown: I’m particularly proud of its new embed support, which will hopefully integrate with Medium somewhat soon.


  1. Buttondown continues to be unprofitable, as does Spoonbill.
  2. I didn’t launch Very Cute, though I got a bit more progress on it. (I don’t feel that bad about this, because it was a productive month — it’s just that most of my cycles were poured into Buttondown.)

What’s Next

  1. Going to retool Buttondown’s pricing to try and monetize the majority of the user segments who don’t qualify for the current pricing schema. For $19/mo, you can set a custom redirect URL, remove branding, and probably a couple other things.
  2. Sticking to that. I think with the current amount of energy I’m spending on Buttondown it’s prohibitively difficult to work on something else. (More about this later.). There are a couple projects I want to do (React Native version of https://coinmarketcap.com/, public Airtable tracking SaaS prices, simple AWS infoproduct…) but I don’t think I can commit to any of them right now.

Other Thoughts

  • The past couple weeks have been exhausting! My schedule has felt packed to the gills: wake up early, do chores and administrative stuff til 9, then work til 1, then work out, then work until 5 or 6. At that point I’m exhausted and have to choose between working on side projects or doing something fun and active. I’m been choosing the latter as much as possible — which is the right choice — but it means I don’t move the needle as much as I’d like, which means I feel guilty.
  • I’m really tempted to start tracking vanity metrics more, because they’re doing really well. But vanity metrics won’t buy me scotch.


Source USD
Advertising $70
App Revenue $680
Consulting $4,000
Total $4,750


Source USD
Advertising $0
AWS $0
App Store $200
Apple Developer’s License $9
DNSimple $49
Dropbox $10
G Suite $15.
GitHub $7
Heroku $200.
JetBrains $15
Mailchimp $15
Ship $5
Bear $2
Total $526

Total Profit: $4,226

And that’s it! Same time next month?

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