Blog well. Think well.
(Read web version.)
At school I found reading very challenging. The last thing I wanted to do was to read a book, let alone write anything. To find myself now, many years later, writing a weekly blog represents a personal transformation. This post explains why and how I write this blog which may inspire you to start sharing your ideas online too.
Why I write a blog
Thinking and learning
“You can't replace reading with other sources of information like videos, because you need to read in order to write well, and you need to write in order to think well.”
— Paul Graham
I believe this to be true for me. Attempting to write in a structured way forces me to order my thoughts. Drafting reveals gaps in my understanding which I can plug via research or thinking the topic through further. Hence, writing is an effective method for learning a topic yourself. Trying to explain something quickly identifies how well you understand it.
My blog acts as a personal weekly journal, a way of chronicling what I was thinking at the time. I often refer back to it to remind myself of the key aspects of a topic. It has proved useful to share with others via a web link, e.g. abitgamey.substack.com/p/how-i-generate-app-ideas.
I include a link to my blog on my personal website PhilMartin.net which, I believe, strengthens my personal brand.
Connecting with and inspiring others
Writing a blog is a way of connecting with people and, if you consistently offer value, establishing an ongoing relationship with them. It acts as a serendipity vehicle, opening up possibilities that would otherwise be closed.
We each have knowledge and experience which is unique to us. Once we develop an understanding of something, it can seem mundane or obvious to us. However, as Derek Sivers suggests, our personal insight or perspective can be of interest to and help others. I am attempting to develop fun and useful mobile apps, e.g. Scarper and NipTo. By sharing my journey, I hope it demystifies the process and encourages some readers to do similar.
How I blog
I use Substack which is free, intuitive and has many useful features. Substack takes 10% of revenues for paid subscription blogs and nothing for free ones, such as mine. Writers can draft and publish posts, configure the look and feel of their blogs, plus manage email distribution lists and view engagement metrics. There are other free and paid blog services, e.g. WordPress and ConvertKit.
I try to write my posts in batches of three, to improve productivity, and have around 20 future blog post topics roughly mapped out. I felt that posting out regularly was important and settled on Sundays at 10am (GMT).
How writing online made me a millionaire by Ali Abdaal
Show Your Work audio book by Austin Kleon
This post identifies why and how I write the A Bit Gamey blog. In next Sunday’s post I’ll talk about product Network Effects and the cold start problem.
Until next Sunday, I look forward to hearing about your blog ideas. I wish you a very happy and fulfilling 2022.