01 December 2018

I follow quite a few blogs, podcasts, and YouTube channels related to software engineering, and a common theme I've noticed between several of the producers of the more inspirational content I follow is that they recommend doing something to get yourself out there, be it maintaining a blog, speaking at conferences, starting a podcast, etc. So that's exactly what I plan to do. I haven't had much luck with finding or starting Meetups in my area, and I'm not in the US or Europe so making it to any major conferences is also challenging, which leaves me with blogging and podcasting. The idea of podcasting seems interesting to me, but I'm quite certain that I lack not only the physical equipment but also the time and energy required to produce something that's actually of a decent quality. With that in mind, I plan to put that idea on the back burner for a few years and instead focus on blogging. There are a few things I'm going to try to keep in mind while doing this:

Your unique experiences and perspective may bring something new to the table

Another idea I've picked up from the people I pay attention to is that you shouldn't be afraid to produce content about a topic that's already got hundreds of other pieces of content in various formats published online. Just because something has already been written or said a hundred times before, doesn't mean that you don't have anything to add. Even if you don't, the way you present the topic you're choosing to create content for may help someone who hasn't yet been helped by some of the existing content out there.

Producing content pushes you to truly know the subject

I often hear and read that teaching is a great way to truly solidify your knowledge because while you may know how to do something, you may not necessarily know why to do it that way, particularly in computer sciences where there are often many different ways to solve a problem or accomplish a task. By pushing yourself to explain a given topic, you force yourself to dig deep and gain a better understanding of it.

Producing content allows you to demonstrate expertise

As for me, a self-taught developer with only a couple of years of experience at the time of writing, finding creative ways to demonstrate my knowledge is a must. Even if you have a degree and several years of experience, I imagine it's still valuable to produce content to demonstrate your knowledge of a given subject.

With the above points in mind, I'm going to work towards writing more frequently throughout 2019. I don't want to write too often, as I'm afraid that would diminish the quality of my posts. Instead, I plan to set a personal goal to publish a quality post once a month, for 12 consecutive months. I figure giving myself a month to prepare and publish something should be plenty of time to produce something decent. Perhaps I should also set a simple reward for accomplishing that to encourage myself to keep going forward, like a donut for each time I publish a blog post on-time or a new audiobook or something along those lines. I could do something a little bigger for the 12th post. I'll think of something and edit this post later.