This is probably the toughest blog post I’ve ever written. After 11 years of pouring my heart and soul into Theme Hybrid, it’s time to say goodbye. Sort of.
Yesterday, I officially closed down the payment/checkout system. This was the first step in disabling the business aspect of the Web site.
Going forward, Theme Hybrid will no longer be a WordPress plugin and theme business.
But, wait! There’s more to this story. Give me a few minutes of your time, and I’ll try to answer some questions you might have.
A new adventure awaits
An incredible job opportunity opened up doing the sort of work that I’ve been wanting to do since I was in college. As much as I love the community that we’ve all built together over the last decade-plus, this opportunity was something that I couldn’t pass up.
I’ve spent nearly my entire adult life working on Theme Hybrid. Just a few weeks ago, I didn’t imagine that I’d be switching gears and doing something new.
Financially, Theme Hybrid has never been a powerhouse. I’ve almost always had to supplement my income with client work and other jobs. For the most part, that’s been OK for me. The site has been a labor of love, and it’s allowed me enough freedom to push some boundaries and build some downright awesome stuff. It’s allowed me the freedom to learn and grow. To fail and succeed.
I turned 35 earlier this year. My responsibilities in my personal life, particularly financially, are not the same as they were at 25. I have to be smarter about career decisions at this point in my life. That’s a harsh reality, but it’s something we all must deal with in adulthood.
Theme Hybrid could make more money with the right business mindset. I’ve left a lot of dollars on the table over the years because I’ve spent more time programming than learning how to be successful at running a business.
My decision is not based solely on money (I’ve turned down numerous employment opportunities with generous salary offers over the years). This decision is more about personal and professional growth. I have hopes, dreams, and goals that I want to accomplish in my life, and I believe this career change will keep me on the path that I want to be on.
Within the next week, I’ll formally announce who my new employer is. A few folks are already taking bets, so feel free to join the fray.
I want today to be about this community.
What does this mean for Theme Hybrid?
That’s the big question, right?
I will absolutely honor everyone’s memberships. If I have to wake an hour early every morning or hop onto our Slack chat in the evenings instead of watching TV, I will do whatever is in my power to make sure no questions go unanswered.
If you feel like you’re getting burned or if this news is a letdown in some way, do not hesitate to contact me or shoot me a private message on Slack. I’ll be happy to talk with you one on one and figure out a solution that works for you.
Don’t forget that there are many awesome people in our Slack chatroom who are far better developers than me and are often willing to lend a hand.
I have no plans to stop creating open source WordPress themes and plugins. I’ve been doing this as a hobby long before I started Theme Hybrid and hope that I can continue long after. I still have loads of awesome ideas that I want to see through. The big change is that my development time toward these projects will happen during my personal/free time.
At the moment, I plan to continue maintaining this Web site as a hobbyist WordPress site.
For the sake of transparency, I’m not 100% sure on what that’s going to look like over the next few weeks or months. There’s a lot of questions still up in the air that I don’t have the answers to yet. I do ask that you be patient with me and let me figure it out.
Will you sell Theme Hybrid?
Again, I’m shooting for complete transparency here. While there are no immediate plans to sell, I’m open to the possibility.
I’d only be willing to sell the site to someone who would continue growing its products and fostering the culture that we’ve built within this community for over a decade. If I did sell, it would be more about making sure the site and community are in good hands rather than a specific dollar amount.
Thanks for everything
Some of you have been with me since I first proposed the idea for this project on my personal blog back in 2008. For others, it’s been a shorter amount of time. I’ve learned a lot from all of you.
Thank you to everyone who put their faith in a smalltown Alabama kid for all these years. Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined I’d be doing this for over a decade. What a ride.
I’m proud of the community we’ve built together.