I’ve been writing about my life on the Web since 1996 with little interruption, and blogging for 12 years now. There were times when I would write 5 posts a day and times when I would not blog for weeks.
The hardest part with blogging is not building an audience. Anyone can do it with lots of work and no particular skills. The hardest part in blogging is keeping writing at a regular pace whatever happens.
Being regular in writing is tough. It takes time to build an audience, and results don’t come in one day. Some day are harder than others. You’re tired, not in the mood for blogging and feeling no one is reading what you take time to write. Discourage comes. You believe what you write is no worth publishing crap and the enthusiasm of your very first day becomes a distant memory. After a few days, your blog becomes a forsaken land.
This happens to me every day. It even happened to me the worst way a blogger can imagine.
Three years ago, I forgot I was writing 2 other blogs. I forgot about them for months until that mail from my registrar telling me the domain names were about to expire. I did not have the motivation to relaunch them, but I decided to build a writing routine instead.
I called it What did I learn today?
Every evening, I take a few minutes to write about one this I learned that day. It’s a powerful trick: I can’t believe you can live one day without learning something, or your life is very boring.
It only takes a few minutes and it should not be longer than 10 lines. But it should be publishing ready, or more exactly teaching ready. That thing I learned that day, I write it to be reusable by someone else.
The benefits are incredible.
It’s my personal knowledge base. Years after, I can reuse it to solve a particular issue I remember writing about. I sometimes come back to something I already faced, and I can see the progress I’ve made.
It brings me new blog posts ideas. When you’re not publishing news, it can be hard to find something to write about. Writing 10 lines about something can lead to 3 blog posts.
It brings me canned drafts. Everything I need is adding an introduction, a conclusion and find an appropriate image. Talk me about easy money.
It helps me to setup other daily routines. Creating routines is like exercising. The firs time are hard, then as it becomes easier, it also becomes addictive. Plugging new routines to a daily established one is like adding new exercises to your daily sport hour.
Finally, it can be useful to other people. When asked about something, there’s a small chance I’ve already written something about it.