Bloggers October 24, 2020

When you first started blogging, how did you gain the confidence to post?

Kevin Hicks @kevinhickssw

I have tried to start a blog several times and have always struggled with having the confidence to write and/or publish what I wrote. So I'm curious what others especially more shy people have done to become confident enough to publish their content to the world.

  1. 3

    It's been a while. I'm just now putting content together to start blogging again. I always struggle to write it, but have never struggled posting it. I feel you though, as social media is where I struggle to post any content.

    I'm assuming you struggle with judgement? Maybe post a couple articles under an alias first?

    I've found that the only way to get past it is by doing it.

    1. 4

      Much of the advice to your question will be like this. It's all about putting in the reps.

      I like to call this, The Rule of Suck. The Rule of Suck states that the first time you do anything, you suck. And you'll probably still suck even after the 100th time. But who cares? You're now 100 reps better than you were when you had 0 reps. Skill is relative.

      Write everyday. Write on napkins, paper towels, toilet paper. Just write! You don't need to publish something, but I highly recommend you publish something frequently. Write about whatever the heck you want to write about. A personal blog gives you so much freedom to practice exploring your thoughts, the different ways to use the English language, and overcoming any self-doubts.

      Writing is difficult and beautiful and disgusting and I hope you do it forever.

      Cheers!

  2. 2

    I'll tell you something really short and something that actually works.

    Just do it. Enough said.

  3. 2

    Hi Kevin,

    I think most people are afraid to put their creativity out into the world. You are definitely not alone. I can't say that I'm a great writer, but after writing hundreds of posts, I know that I've improved A LOT.

    Look at the early posts and podcasts of all the now famous people like Joe Rogan, Pat Flynn, etc. and you can see how much they have improved over time. Basically, everyone sucks in the beginning. Focus on sucking a little less on each post and you will notice your improvement over time. :-)

    Here is some good advice I've heard.

    1. Don't compare your beginning to someone else's middle.
    2. If you are just beginning, you likely don't have an audience. That means that almost no one will see those early posts anyway.
    3. You become a better writer by writing (and reading). If you want to write better, write more. 100 published posts will make you a much better writer, than waiting until you have the perfect post. You've probably read about the pottery class example?
      (https://jswilder16.medium.com/how-to-improve-every-day-af6711d387fc)

    If you still have trouble publishing your early posts. Create a fake account on Medium and start writing under a pseudonym. That is 100% no risk. Do the first 10 posts there, then rewrite them on your blog when you are ready.

    I hope that helps.
    John

    1. 1

      Thanks for this advice. I didn't think about going back to look at some famous people to see how they started.

      The posting on a fake account might also be a great idea for me. I'm a developer which is unfortunately can be a toxic community which is where part of my problem of confidence comes from. Its all too common for something to be posted developers don't agree with and for it to turn toxic and spill over into multiple channels and attacking the person. Posting under the fake account would allow me to be able to see if that is a big of a problem as I think it could be and just be able to ignore and avoid it if it does.

  4. 2

    Hi Kevin,

    I actually wrote a post about managing and overcoming the fear of publishing new content. It contains five specific tactics for managing your fear.🙂 It took me a lot of time to manage it (I’m always nervous when I publish a new post), but I try to think about my content from an outside perspective. What will the reader get out of this? for example.

    I also stick to a publishing schedule which I keep no matter what. I aim to publish at minimum once per month; this gives me a sense of obligation to get my stuff out there.

    Best of luck!

    1. 1

      Thanks for sharing the article.

      I'll also have to take a closer look at your book linked to in that post. At a quick skim it seems like that will be very helpful for me too once I actually get started blogging.

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        Awesome! Here's the link again for reference. Let me know if you have any questions, and remember: you got this!

    2. 1

      What's a "nee post"?

      1. 1

        It's a typo — "new post" :)

  5. 1

    I use Grammarly, and keep in mind that I don't know everything (not perfect) so that helps to allow myself to put my thoughts out there for criticism. The worst case scenario to me is I'm wrong about something and someone shows me the correct way. But I think the important thing is to start and keep doing it because not as many people will be reading as you might think, for better or worse. 😅 So might as well start practicing and growing as a blogger

    1. 1

      Do you find Grammarly really useful for blogging?

      I've tried it before for just general communication (emails, messages, etc.), but didn't find it useful for that. Is it a different experience for longer content?

      1. 2

        Yeah for me I don’t like to spend so much time parsing every sentence and every paragraph— I like to throw down 1k-2k words without too much deep thought. Then iterate over it using grammarly to catch awkward sounding sentences and general mistakes. Please have a look at anyone of my posts and let me know what your thoughts are because I used grammarly for every single one and I think it reads okay

  6. 1

    When starting out, getting someone to actually read what you write is so hard, you might even put out inferior content intentionally and nobody would notice. So you gain confidence by posting, noticing very few, if any, are reading, and realizing nobody is judging you.

  7. 1

    I cannot really help other than saying you’re not alone. I find blogging really hard. It’s scary putting stuff out there.

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