What day is halfway through the year? The day that’s halfway through the calendar year is July 1st 🙂
A year of blogging and I’m halfway through. To be fair, some of the time I’ve written 400 words as part of a larger post – or written a service page for my website, but some of the time I’ve written 3,000 words in a day. It’s been 182.5 days of an above average amount of writing for me. Since I finished my year of hand-lettering I knew I’d use the one-a-day-for-a-year method to dive deeper into another discipline I just didn’t know which would be next.
The commitment to do something every day for a year and ship something for every day of the year is a ball-busting, nerve-crashing, death-defying commitment. I got married a month ago, and still I wrote an article for every day either before or after my marriage day and honeymoon. Then I got very sick for way too long, a week and a half of shitty sickness, but I still wrote something for every single day and shared it with the world. Some of it sucked. Like this post on selling to someone who doesn’t know they need what you have, and this post on making it as easy as possible for employees to contribute to a content strategy. And I promise I’m not trying to abuse your attention, but a commitment to creating is incredibly refreshing, especially in a world where so many people spend the majority of their time consuming the stuff other people are creating.
I want to break out of just consuming and into a lifestyle based on creating on a regular basis.
That’s what this commitment to writing is about for me. I’ve also written some really good shit in the past month – like this post on work ethic in digital marketing, and this in-depth post on search trends in 2016. All of it is teaching me that I need to trust myself, trust my instincts and recognize that I’m more powerful than I can imagine when it comes to how much I can create. In Do The Work by Steven Pressfield, the author talks about how his creative reservoir is like a box that every time he opens it there is something there without fail. He says to trust that with every fiber of your being and it won’t let you down.
I write based off of real stories and experiences I’ve had which keeps the flow going
Because a lot of the writing I do is based on web design, and web development I need to keep doing the work that fuels the insights I can share. My best writing on conversion rate optimization has included real A/B tests I’ve written, my best posts on SEO have included original research and my best posts about life observations come from real revelations I’ve had based on real experiences or interactions with people. It makes me want to have more experiences and learn new things just so I can share them with other people.
Whenever I’ve tried to dip into unfamiliar territory just to fit into a particular box – for a guest post or whatever where there’s a particular tone that I know the editor might like… I stall out. I then back up, remind myself the best stuff is built on solid, legitimate personal experience and I try to re-approach the article based more in line with my particular expertise.
Writing has helped me clarify my thoughts more, given websites I’ve written at least 73,000 words of content (with SEO in mind much of the time,) and driven me to learn
Yes, I do research for the posts I’m writing, and a lot of that requires reading other experts in the field and distilling down key points to augment my own personal observations and bring more perspective to the article. This has driven me to learn a ton about digital marketing and the things I’m working on. Writing for 182.5 days has taught me a hell of a lot, here are some of the other things I feel like it’s contributed to my life:
- That I suck at grammar, but that’s ok because people care about the value of what you’ve learned more
- It’s ok to drop a bit of emotion or personal observation into your content, and in the context of a story, it makes an article more effective.
- People love images and my content without images generally performs more poorly
- Writer’s block isn’t real if you just start before you’re ready.
For those that read what I write – I commit that I will always try to give as much value as I feel that I can, even until it hurts.
I’m the kind of writer / designer / craftsman that makes it a point to give away almost all of my trade secrets. I intend to share the most practical insights that I come across and drive myself in my work to find as many practical insights as I can. I am successful, my work is effective, and my clients love what I do because it makes them money. These are very good reasons to trust someone who’s writing with every ounce of his body dedicated to sharing value with his reading audience. Thank you for reading, and checking out the things I post – I truly appreciate it.