Last week seen a spike in traffic to my blog. Looking at the stats, I noticed that most of the traffic was coming from Hacker News (HN). It turns out that Curtis McHale submitted my Simple Tools post to the HN board. He's a braver man than I am, because I would never post my own stuff to HN.
Why? In a word, fear.
Not because of the content or opinion of my own writing, but the way in which I present that content or opinion. Fear that my writing isn't good enough or doesn't communicate my opinion clearly. I'm not a particularly confident person, but the confidence diminishes when it comes to my writing and my code. "What if it's wrong?" is always at the front of my thoughts when I'm writing or coding.I hate failing at something. Well it's actually more like fearing it. I took a step one day and said, "I'm gonna ship this for the world to see". It was the first step towards building up some confidence. Having a web product out there is a great boost to your confidence if you're a programmer, designer or wannabe entrepreneur. It has helped me to build my confidence but I don't feel that it is enough.
My next step is produce more publicly available writing and code for the world to see. I need to commit to writing more often, coding more often.For writing it means blocking out 30 minutes a day to write. Putting something on the blog every day. Allowing people read more about what you have to say. If it's garbage, they'll let you know.
For coding it means a better understanding of the code I am writing and making that code publicly available. Releasing more libraries for other developers to use and let them point out bugs and enhancements.You can only learn your craft from making mistakes along the way and learning from these mistakes. Want to be a better writer? Write more. Want to be a better programmer? Write more code. The confidence will come along the way, or so I am often told!
As for posting my blog posts to HN, I'll leave that to Curtis to do for me while I chip away at the fear with another piece of writing.