To blog or not to blog

typewriter

I wanted to start blogging some time ago but I didn’t do it because wanting is one thing and actually doing it is a little bit harder. I don’t remember the reason why I wanted to blog at that time and I think that’s the cause I didn’t do it, it was just a thought.

I’m working as a programmer and a significant part of my work is learning how to implement a new set of requirements or how to fix a bug in the code. When I learn something completely new I read a book or follow a tutorial but when I need a good source of information for a problem I don’t understand I usually read a blog post. It’s clear that reading a post is a good way of learning but preparing a post is even better. I finally understood that writing a post will help me to improve at least two things:

  • My knowledge about that topic
  • Expressing ideas in writing

I had good reasons to start writing but I wanted to learn more about the process of doing it. The first help came from Natalie Sisson who designed a challenge for bloggers wannabes. The main purpose is to get into the habit of writing. I challenged myself to do it and the reason is simple. If I was not able to write 15 posts, there was no reason to continue. I managed to finish it and I decided to start this blog.

I chose a hosting platform, bought the domain, installed WordPress and then I started writing. I had no clear plan, I just followed the flow and wanted to learn from actually doing it. After one or two weeks after I started I received a notification from twitter that John Sonmez just followed me. I checked his profile and I found that he is a programmer, he has a successful blog and he created a blog course. I do not know why he started to follow me but I know he chose the perfect moment. I’m somewhere in the middle of his course and I want to share with you what I just learned:

  • Specialization or “niching down”: It’s important to select a theme for my blog and to not be afraid to select a specialization.
  • List of blog ideas: It is not easy to write a post if I just sit down in front of the computer and wait to be enlightened somehow. It is much easier if I create a list upfront and then maintain that list.
  • Consistency: If a select a schedule for posting and if I will keep up with, I will constantly grow my collection of posts and improve my writing skills.

If you are going to start blogging, learning a little bit about the process will make a difference. It is much better to learn from other people mistakes than from your own.

Image credit: Tanja-Denise Schantz, CC0 Public Domain