January 02, 2019
This blog has a story…
Yes, even with barely one post, this blog still has some background and through this post I’ll talk about this story.
When I started learning programming for real, about 1 to 1.5 years ago I kept reading other blog posts, receiving emails from people I follow, or tweets about starting a blog to track your learning.
When I finally got convinced that starting a blog would help me out in my journey for a different set of reasons (apart from learning) I decided I would start one, and well… this was in May 2017.
I know, I know… considerable time has passed since my decision and I’m only lauching it in 2019, and no, this is not part of a new year’s resolution.
Life gets in the way, a lot of times, we all know it, but that’s not the main reason that made me take so long to launch it, I believe it was a mixture of technical choices and mindset.
First, let’s explore this thing about mindset ok?
As I was planning to write mainly technical posts about web technologies I was learning, a few things kept popping into my head:
That held me back a lot about starting to write stuff. I kept reading other people’s stuff and got convinced that as I’m a beginner now, we’ll have new beginners coming in the future that may need my content and to create the blog as a way to catalog what I was learning and even use it as a way to consult about a subject I might forget after sometime.
With all this philosophy out of my way, I was ready to burn my keyboard with non-stop writing days, right?
Well… not exactly…
Now I had to decide what platform to blog in.
Wordpress? Medium? Manually update html files into a simple hosting service (we’ll get there)?
I decided (at first) that I would use Wordpress and with that, more questions:
As I wanted to start writing as soon as possible, I decided to buy a theme until I learned how to develop my own. I would even state that in the blog so people reading (if any) would see what a bad ass and determined developer I am and in no time I would create my own, unique and exclusive mind blowing theme.
I was wrong, I just spent money on something I didn’t end up using as I started doing other things and forgot bout the blog. I was taking a Node development course and realized how troublesome it could be to write a blog post while I was still learning about a topic (stupid me).
Time was passing and I was wasting it, as nothing about the blog was being done anymore.
A snap in my mind said “Ok, that’s enough! I have to start learning, but I’ll create my own theme, I’ll learn it and I’ll rock, I’ll even teach how to create a WP theme…”
In fact, I developed a simple theme to meet my initial needs. Not everything about the design was great, but it would do. If you want to check it out, I have a github repo for this theme (https://github.com/Nilomiranda/danmirandaio).
With that theme, I planned ahead some pages that I would want it to have right at the launch (about me, resources, etc.) and that lead me to hell.
I was so anxious to launch something, to have some useful posts that I kept postponing the content of these pages, and without that I thought that the website in general would suck.
So again, nothing posted, no blog launched…
At this point, I have to admit that “not putting the work in” was one of the main reasons of not launching anything.
Now let’s continue…
I got stuck for a few days with this thing about having to create the content for the pages, and then I was checking some of Level up Tutorials content and then I found out about GatsbyJS, a static site generator and followed through the Getting Started With Gatsby video series.
I love Gatsby, it’s not that difficult to get started, even if you don’t know to much about GraphQL, but it’s good to have at least basic knowledge of ReactJS.
And then the final decision, I would use Gatsby to build my blog, and use it to push myself towards learning more React and GraphQL.
As I was crazy to start posting, I decided to work with the gatsby starter file just to have a blog up and running in no time. I just tweaked a few colors so it would feel more “mine”.
In the future (I promise that) I’ll build something more from the “ground up” with GatsbyJS, and I’ll make sure I’ll document everything.