lower the barrier to writing

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One of my 2020 goals is to write and create more. That is one of the reasons I decided to create a digital garden , developed my own program to build the website, and tuned them over time with one goal in mind: lower to barrier to writing (and publishing) as much as I could.

Why

At this stage, writing is a channel that I can use to build up knowledge. To find back my reflections and build upon them. Writing in this space is not about performative blogging , but about exploration. I want to re-learn how I think and link ideas and I do believe that there are no better means to do it but to sit down and write. For me, writing is also partly a way of documenting, it's not only about creation.

Why Publicly

I want to explore the approach of learning in public , I want to see what happens when I fear being wrong in public and how that would affect and steer my own process. Going public has a two-fold purpose. On the one hand it allows me to be known, to be read by people that may or may not share my thoughts, but that are willing to discuss and force me to reflect deeper.

The other purpose is to try to create an impact. I do believe that many problems stem from a lack of understanding of the world. I think there are many missed opportunities for improvement, for creating a healthier internet , a healthier world . I'm fascinated by the open hardware movement, and would love to be a resonance box. I also want to openly discuss about technology transfer and its many risks and opportunities ahead.

My Approach

Writing First

The approach I took started, first, by forcing myself to write every day, in order to develop my writing habits . It took me a while to understand what process made me happy. Tried Roam, Evernote, until I finally settled for plain markdown using mostly Obsidian.

The advantage of having an offline tool is that I can write without distractions. I can start even before opening the browser and its infinite tabs of unfinished things to read, reply, or catch up with.

Publishing Second

Once I started having a small body of work, of interlinked notes, it was time to make them publicly available. There are many different ways of achieving the same. One is to use Github pages, which will automatically compile the notes with Jekyll. Gatsby seems to be what most people use these days. I went for building my own (see: how i built this website ).

I make no distinction between notes and articles. Some notes are just longer (see What happens when notes become long ). I know some people read them because they have commented about them, but I do not keep stats. I don't track the visitors of this website, not only for user privacy online , but also to be completely free to write whatever I want, without self-biasing me to pursue a bigger viewership.

Sharing Third

I haven't reached the step of actively sharing my content. I am looking into webmentions in order to link with other content creators out there. I do think that at some point I will have some articles that are more than stubs and that can be spread. I am looking at building a newsletter , or at least adding some rss feed so people can be up-to date. However, I am afraid that whatever I do in this third step will have a net negative impact in my goal of having a low barrier.

Aquiles Carattino
Aquiles Carattino
This note you are reading is part of my digital garden. Follow the links to learn more, and remember that these notes evolve over time. After all, this website is not a blog.
© 2020 Aquiles Carattino
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