As I carry through my objective to blog daily in 2014, people continue to ask me how I devise daily topics.
I’ve already spoken at length about my email strategy – rather than responding to one-off “how to” messages, I’ll write my response as an article and email a link. I’ve also spoken (in person at least) about my Twitter strategy. I will poll the community for ideas and watch for developing trends I can weigh on.
Often the more interesting conversations require more than 140 characters – taking my thoughts to a blog helps me lay things out in more detail. It also makes for a more persistent medium upon which to have the conversation (since Twitter will otherwise bury our chat under the firehose of endless data).
When faced with writers’ block, though, I’ll often just write about whatever comes to mind.
Working through Issues
The topic I cover the most on this site is technology – primarily WordPress. I work with WordPress in my day job, so I’ll often come across problems and solutions related to WordPress.
I’ll then write about these problems and their affiliated solutions, not just so I can engage the community, but so I won’t forget what I was doing at the time.
The number of times I’ve tried to search for an issue on Google, and been directed to an older tutorial on my own site is laughable – it happens at least once a month. It’s great that I have a place to catalog my efforts so I can come back and recall how I’ve solved the problem before. 1
Working through work-related code challenges helps me in other ways, too. By explaining the problem in an article – as well as the solution I devised – I’m forced to get both out of my head and in front of someone else. More often than not, this helps re-cast the issue in my mind as well, and I’ll sometimes come up with a different (superior) solution than the one I’m already using.
In this way, my blog serves as a persistent rubber ducky when it comes to explaining my code.
If you want to write more in 2014, take some time to catalog your work – the challenges you’ve faced and the solution you devised to overcome them. The article might help a colleague someday – better yet, it might help you.
- It’s a bit disturbing I need an outside tool to remember any of this, but I’ll concede the point and use it nonetheless. ↩