Why I Write
Starting a blog in 2023 feels a bit weird. It's not my first time, though. I started my first blog a long time ago when blogging platforms came up. Later on, I had another blog when I migrated my website to WordPress. But that quickly died down as I was busy doing other things. Writing regularly is hard.
I started to write publicly again on Medium a couple of years ago. One of my articles even got published in a collection, which was nice. Then I quit my job, had some time to spare, and wrote a book. It was a lot of fun, but also a lot of work. But back then, I got into the habit of writing regularly and I enjoyed it.
None of my writing was successful by any means. The book, which was self-published on Amazon, sold a little more than a hundred copies. The blog posts and Medium articles got less than a hundred views, except for the one being published in the collection. That didn't matter to me, though, because I liked writing every single piece and I think now I know a lot better why that was the case.
I write a daily journal for years and I thought about writing about other things in public for quite some time. Not so much for the public aspect, the views, or the clicks. I want to write for myself, first and foremost.
Writing helps to sort out your thoughts. It brings clarity to your thinking and it forces you to think things through. When I start a new design project, I start with writing. It forces me to think through a user flow, articulate and flesh out a concept, to communicate an idea. You could argue that a text document is—similar to a sketch—the simplest form of a design, of an idea. Usually, just trying to write something down shows you what you don't know about it and what you haven't thought about yet.
Even though you can share your writing with others and get feedback, that's just the icing on the cake. Writing is already immensely powerful if you do it just for yourself.
“Writing is the process by which you realize that you do not understand what you are talking about. Importantly, writing is also the process by which you figure it out.
Writing about something teaches you about what you know, what you don’t know, and how to think. Writing about something is one of the best ways to learn about it. Writing is not just a vehicle to share ideas with others but also a way to understand them better yourself.”
With this blog, I want to write about design and all things that I think about nowadays when doing design work. But I might also write about other things not directly related to that. I believe that writing is not only a powerful tool but also a valuable skill to have. Maybe especially now and in the future, when shallow ideas, junk news, and all other kinds of noise will most likely increase significantly thanks to AI. It's getting easier to produce written content fast. But thinking, understanding, and solving hard problems can't be outsourced. And I guess that's fine.
I will try to improve my writing and thinking here at this place. No metrics, no boundaries. I write for myself and my main goal, for now, is to get in the habit of doing it regularly. Everything else can follow later on.
For more reasons to write yourself, I strongly encourage you to read the article “Why write” over at Farnam Street. It's one of my all-time favorite websites, not only for writing but for thinking in general.