Write for yourself, not others. You will thank yourself later.

I’ve slowly been getting my writing mojo back.  2018 was a lot about tidying stuff up in my digital life.  Life was a bit mad for a few years and I didn’t get the chance to mentally or physically clear up the mess.

Whilst I’m still not back at writing proper articles, I feel myself developing that consistent habit of showing up.

I’m not necessarily writing every day. I don’t enforce myself into rules of writing x amount of words or otherwise I fail.  It’s more of developing a habit and a system that I feel happy with.

Part of writing, to me, is developing the habit of logging things, so that when I sit down to write I have plenty of things to choose from and focus on one or two at a time.

  • I’m reading more proper books and taking notes on my phone or highlighting in Kindle, I then put these book notes on my website.  These notes are for me.  I put them on my website for ease of access for me.  Anyone can access them if they look.
  • Trello cards – I have a few different boards for ideas of what to write, whenever I see something with a potential idea, I had it as a Trello card. Screenshots, text, links, images, whatever.  It’s so easy to add a card from my mobile or laptop.
  • Pocket – I add stuff to pocket that I would like to read.  When I get around to reading the stuff I’ve bookmarked then I’ll decided whether I should add a trello card for it.
  • Feedly – I’ve subscribed to many blogs, news sites, etc.  I dip in and out of this on a regular basis.
  • Collecting links – I’ve also collected a bunch of links of interest to me and testing here.  I will probably change this to be not just about testing, but about all the business and tech things I’m interested in.

As I’ve cleared things up I now know I most definitely do not have a shortage of ideas on what to write about.  I also realise this is a process that I’m quite happy to adapt and improve over time.

I tried to find the one or few tools out there that would make writing and publishing easier, and discovered that tool was in front of me that whole time – my wordpress website.  Go figure.

The stuff I’m writing at the moment falls into these categories:

  • timeline on this website – instead of tweeting or posting to Facebook, I’m posting to my own curated timeline on my website (this is just a category called ‘timeline’)
  • blog posts – sometimes I write blog posts here (and trying to do more so on UnSchool.Me)
  • Club Posts – this is the forum over at MoT, there is so much we should be talking about from a testing perspective that isn’t being discussed.  I have a big list of things to add, not sure I’ll ever get through it, but I do my best to post 1-3 new posts per week as discussion starters.
  • content for MoT – I’m still keen to write about testing stuff at times, or gather information that is there to present better to the community.  All my efforts for testing content naturally go into MoT.  I don’t have time to write for anyone else. I keep trying to kid myself I can contribute elsewhere. I have to get better at saying no.
  • notes – I know my brain can’t hold stuff anymore (or perhaps it never did) and I hate it when I can’t recall or revisit loosely the things I’ve been learning and researching. I’ve created a notes section for myself.  It’s messy and raw.  It will change over time.  But at least I have some place to consistently dump some things until later.

The truth is that I write all these things for myself.  I don’t care who reads or shares this, though I do hope some find it useful. Whether someone does or doesn’t engage with my content won’t stop me from writing all the little or big things that I care about.

My saddest thing is that I took so long to get around to this.  I really feel this is helping my authentically being myself.  Away from the social media eyes and a focus on just creating something of use to myself.

Of course, before someone calls me out for being hypocritical, it won’t stop me sharing some of the things I write on social media, but I am much more selective about what I choose to share.  And unless something goes crazy then I will pay little attention to who shares or likes my stuff.

2019 for me is about developing better consistency, small constant improvements and habits around all of the above.  I know I will thank myself later for this.

Fingers crossed!

 

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