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Jessica Wilkins
Jessica Wilkins

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What I learned from Virtual Coffee's Tech blogging challenge

During the month of November, Virtual Coffee members participated in a blogging challenge.

The goal was to write 50,000 words as a community. This challenged all of the members to write thoughtful tech blogs and publish them on sites like Devto.

The community ended up exceeding that goal and writing over 120,000 words.

It was great to see all of the amazing articles and grow personally as a writer.

In this article, I am going to break down some of the articles I submitted for this challenge and what I learned by writing them.

How I overcame my fear of technical writing and landed a job at freeCodeCamp

This was probably my most popular article from this month.

I decided to tell the story of how I started learning how to code and wound up working for freeCodeCamp.

I felt like it was important to tell this story because everyone has a unique journey into tech.

I think it is inspiring to learn about everyone's past careers and how they wound up as developers.

It was nice to see the positive reception to my story and seeing it shared across social media. I hope to write more articles talking about my journey in the near future. 😃

How to Create a Website Free of Cost – Website Builder Platform Guide

As a staff author for freeCodeCamp News, this was one of the assigned headlines.

My task was to come up with a list of website builders that were completely free. That includes free hosting.

The target audience for this article were those that were actively searching for free options to build websites that required zero coding knowledge.

At first, I wasn't sure how many free options there were still out there. My initial impression was that were was always going to be some sort of hidden cost built in.

But to my suprise, there are a few options where you can build high quality sites without any coding experience.

All of these options have drag and drop features and pre made template designs to choose from.

These were the four sites I found during my research.

  1. Wix
  2. Weebly
  3. SITE123
  4. Carrd

I really hope this guide will help those non-coders who want to build beautiful websites. 😃

How to Run the freeCodeCamp Backend Challenges Locally

I decided to come up with this article, because I was surprised that freeCodeCamp did not have a guide to teach users how to run the backend challenges locally.

In the curriculum, most users decide to complete the challenges using the Replit starter project.

But the few users that do decide to run the project locally, try to submit their GitHub repository links but are confused why the system doesn't except their submission.

I decided to create a walkthrough guide of how to clone the freeCodeCamp backend repositories and get the project running using the local server.

I enjoyed writing this short guide to help freeCodeCamp users through the backend certifications. 😃

How to Build a Weather Converter Series

I wanted to create a tutorial for beginners for a few months now, but was always too nervous to write it.

I wanted to create a step by step guide to give beginners extra practice creating small web projects.

This was my first tutorial and it was to show beginners how to build a Weather Temperature converter using HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

I initially struggled with how to structure the series and how detailed I should get when it came to using a code editor.

I tried to be aware of the fact that many beginners might not be familiar with a code editor. So I wanted to walk them through the basics.

I also wanted to explain each step of the project and how parts of the code were working.

I was happy to see that the project received positive reviews and that people were following along with the series.

Stress and Mental Health in Tech – What I learned from Dr. Jennifer Akullian's freeCodeCamp Tech Talk

I decided to write this article because the issue of mental health in tech is not discussed that often.

I learned a lot from this freeCodeCamp Tech Talk, and wanted to share my thoughts with the community.

The main takeaway I received from the talk, were exercises I could do throughout the day to manage my stress at work.

I have even started to implement some of those daily exercises throughout my work day.

I encourage everyone to give this 19 minute talk a listen because mental health is important.


This has been a great month of writing. I am really fortunate to be apart of a great community like Virtual Coffee and I look forward to next month's challenge. 😃

Top comments (2)

andrewbaisden profile image
Andrew Baisden

Wow inspired.

kirkcodes profile image
Kirk Shillingford

You were the MVP this month! Thank you so much for participating and inspiring others!