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After 8 months of drafts 💀, I completed my first blog post 🎉

I had a short list of 5 goals to complete by 2021, including writing a blog post each month. If you read the title, you know it's going swell 😈

The main reason I was finally able to hit publish is a shift in mindset.

I'm ditching my set of goals for THE most important goal:
👉 making my business profitable

I may still hit my goal of 12 blog posts before year end, but it's more about the intention to create content consistently. I'm simply putting energy into marketing.

The Mindset Shift

As a maker, it's easy to be all over the place and make assumptions all day. But after 12-24 months of real-world data, it's time to make those hard-to-swallow decisions.

For me, the hard call was focusing on my most successful project SVG Backgrounds, rather that developing the other 3+ latest projects despite the effort and love I have for those last three.

I'm still working out my content plans and strategies, but hitting publish is more important than figuring it all out first. ⏰

  1. 3

    This sounds super stupid and pathetic but it's honestly so praiseworthy. I've had the same problem. Publishing a blog post is hard. It's not easy. There's fear of judgment, shame at your writing not being as good as you initially thought it'd be. Perfectionism.

    It took me a long while too to publish my first blogpost, but I too finally did it :) It was pretty successful too (got about ~20k views). Problem: I never published again.

    😂

    I'm setting a goal for myself: publish another blogpost before the month is out.

    1. 3

      Thanks Hugo! And congrats right back for blogging too!

      If you got 20K views, you're doing something incredibly right. Unless you have other projects brewing, I encourage you to keep posting more.

      I finally got past perfectionism, though I must admit it has slowed me down a whole bunch in the past. I put great effort into everything, enough that I don't really need to worry about quality, so now I push myself to be quicker to hit publish. Hopefully I can keep that up.

      1. 1

        Yeah, you're right. I'm currently focusing on building namy.ai, but I should probably give blogging a bit more of my time. And I enjoy it too! It's just hard to get past perfectionism. Whenever I write I just get disappointed at what I've written: it doesn't represent at all the complex, nebulous thought cloud I had in my head. The translation from brain to paper just seems so poor.

        But still, it's much better than nothing, so I shall do it.

        Please send me a link when you publish again! I'll probably take that as a kick in the butt to get something published that day.

        1. 2

          Followed you on Twitter and I will take your offer to send you a link when I hit published next (this week).

          Your domain name gen site is cool. The next phase, that no maker likes to admit, is promotion. Getting the word out is much easier with a blog that generates traffic... see what I did there :)

  2. 2

    Congrats to you for taking the leap and publishing! Taking your customers on the journey with you can be just as valuable as showing off the end result.

    1. 1

      Thanks! I've been building in public on Twitter, but now I'm going to be adding long form writing too.

  3. 2

    Matt I love your work and it's great that you share your doubts, goals and achievements. I am passionate about product making and learn a lot from your shared experience. Hope you will find the time for more blog posting and wish you good luck with http://svgbackgrounds.com/ it's an awesome project

    1. 2

      Thank you Lucian! You're so supportive and I truly appreciate it.

      Yes, already 50% done with my next post talking about icons. Can't wait to hit publish, but not just yet 😛

  4. 2

    If you have problems publishing, then say this to yourself in the mirror everyday:

    "The first draft is the best draft"

    Writing is hard. But I find the hardest part is just getting the words down on paper first. That'll get you 80% of the way there. And while it's not 100%, that's better than 0%.

    1. 1

      I've been reasonably OK at getting from 0-50%. It's the finishing part that is hard, but that's where my focus is now, so I'm confident I can publish a few more in the near future.

  5. 2

    Writing is a discipline intelligent people think should comes naturally. But like any discipline, it can be learned. I can't recommend Roy Peter Clark's book enough to writers, if nothing else because of the examples of excellent pros with each tip.

    https://www.amazon.com/Writing-Tools-Essential-Strategies-Writer/dp/0316014990

    Adding one more that is a gem and you can read for free.

    POLITICS AND THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE by George Orwell.

    https://www.orwellfoundation.com/the-orwell-foundation/orwell/essays-and-other-works/politics-and-the-english-language/

    1. 1

      Thanks for the suggested reading material, I'll take take a look after today's writing session. I do want to write better, but my first goal is to hit publish.

    2. 1

      For fun, here's applying some of the writer's tips to the so so sentences I wrote in the above post. My tendency is to be too wordy and write overly long sentences.

      • Lead with subject noun.
      • Activate your verbs.
      • Put the important stuff at the beginning and end.

      And from Orwell:

      • Prefer simple language to the complex

      "Writing is a discipline intelligent people think should comes naturally." -

      • Smart people believe writing should come naturally

      "But like any discipline, it can be learned."

      • But writing can be learned.

      "I can't recommend Roy Peter Clark's book enough to writers, if nothing else because of the examples of excellent pros with each tip."

      • I recommend Roy Peter Clark's book to writers. Each writing tip is accompanied by excellent pros.
      1. 1

        Haha, thanks for the examples. It's intriguing to watch someone critique themselves, and do a great job at that. Thanks again for the breakdowns!

  6. 2

    One thing that helps is to continually keep track of blog post ideas. ATM I have a backlog of ~200 articles that I want to write about.

    Another is to have a clear writing schedule. For instance, I personally write each morning from ~6 AM to ~8:30

    1. 1

      Thanks for the pro tips Sébastien!

      During these 8 months, I have accumulated a handful of partial drafts and 30 or so ideas for posts. And, yes as part of the mindset shift to think more about marketing, blogging will is important, so I am carving out a chunk of my day to get the content flowing.

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