Ever since I created my first website(s) on Xoom and Tripod around 1998, before the days of blogging, I’ve wanted to blog. I have these random thoughts about things and I feel the desire to write it down. More for myself than for any particular audience. Just because I’m attracted by the idea of creating something.
However, I’ve been trying to write blog posts occasionally over the last few years, and I keep getting discouraged by my lack of writing skill. I start typing a few notes for a blog idea, and then once I get to a few bullet points of ideas, I really struggle to figure out how I’m going to expand the handful of bullet points into a full blog post with colors and graphs and code samples etc. Hundreds of potential blog posts only remained as small draft note files somewhere in a “blog ideas” directory.
I look at blogs by some of my blogging heros like Scott Hanselman, Jon Sonmez, Erik Dietrich or Claire Burge (just a few random examples), and I feel both inspired and discouraged at the same time by the quality and quantity of their blogs (and other content!). I know I’ll never have the colorful vocabulary and the skill with words to create something that I could be that proud of. (And I’ve never been very inspired to blog using the tools I’ve tried like WordPress, Blogger, LiveWriter, but I’m hoping that will change now I’m using GitHub Pages.)
I have to keep reminding myself: screw it, let’s do it. The guilt I feel about not blogging at all (or not writing more code for that matter) is worse than my disappointment in my uninspiring writing.
I think a lot of developers don’t find blogging appealing because they think they’ll leave the blogging to the experts and I guess they don’t feel comfortable putting their opinions out there for everyone to see. I don’t really care much about what people think about my blog posts. If a stupid blog post I wrote 2 years ago helps one person to configure their internet settings on their Nexus 7 for O2 Ireland, then I think that’s pretty cool. But ultimately I’m really just doing it for myself. I’m talking to myself, because it allows me to try and structure my thoughts in a way I can’t really do if I keep the thought in my brain. Ideally I would have discussed the ideas instead (or as well) with a friend or a coworker to have a more interesting two-way conversation, but this will have to do.
So thanks for being a listening friend here.
PS. I also wrote about this same topic back in 2012.