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Cover image for Yes, you should write that first post!

Yes, you should write that first post!

jmfayard profile image Jean-Michel Fayard πŸ‡«πŸ‡·πŸ‡©πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡¬πŸ‡§πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡ΈπŸ‡¨πŸ‡΄ ・3 min read

Dear reader who has not started writing yet,

I want to encourage you to start writing your first post and see where it leads you.

In fact I have thought about this for a long time, and procrastinated hard on this, until I saw this tweet

I have no special insights on how to make babies or avoid divorce.

But redirecting your anxiety into something potentially as meaningful as starting to write?

Hell yes. That seems like a good idea to me!

Why?

To be honest, I'm not sure that you can answer this question at that point of time.

You can see where the writing journey went for some people:

But at this point, you have probably no idea what you are doing.

That's OK.

When I started, I had no idea what I was doing either.

Just get started and you will see where it leads you.

If it leads you to write three articles and that's it, that's OK.

But it would be sad if it didn't happen only because you never tried.

How do I get started?

That's a better question!

Here is a simple guide:

firstpost-how

Add the #firstpost tag so that people who follow it can encourage you.

By the way, has anyone the courage to implement this? issue 5274: automatically add the firstpost tag to make it easy to welcome first post writers

But what do I write?

It doesn't really matter.

Your first post probably won't be your best but it will probably be the most important one.
Because all the posts that could come after this one will never exist if you never get started.

The main danger is to get stuck in fear.

How to write with fear?

Steven Pressfield has written a beautiful book on the subject that paralyzed pretty much all writers before you: The War of Art.

Resistance, as Steven Pressfield puts it, exists to prevent you to do what is right and meaningful to you.

But don't buy this book today. Don't even follow my link.

You have a first post to write.

Today.

For your purpose, it's enough if you know that fear builds up any time you give it time and complexity.

So, just write something simple right now.

But seriously, what do I write?

If you have ten articles on your mind and are in analysis paralysis, pick the simplest one and get it done.

If you have written another article elsewhere, do like what I did, just cross-post it here.

If not, you write a short description of yourself plus some topics you may write about. Later.

But how do I add pictures?

You don't.

Finding the right picture would be the perfect excuse to procrastinate.

You have no time for that today.

Write some text and hit publish.

But I don't know Markdown

Stick to plain text for now.

You will have plenty of time to learn Markdown after you have published your first post.

What do I do after I hit "Publish"?

Post its URL in a comment here.

Who knows? That may inspire another reader to write her first post!

Bonus point if you can use that syntax

Hey I did it! Here is my article:

{% post https://dev.to/yourusername/your-url-here }

Then close your computer and go outside.

Recap

firstpost-how

Discussion

markdown guide
 

Thanks alot, I'm glad you liked my content and it's a really kind of you that you featured my content in one of your post and it's all about taking the first step.

I would love to add that DEV is amazing platform with lots of active readers + authors.
The new user sign-ups rate are very high, People are loving the content because they love to read the honest stories and writings. When a person starts writing, he writes honest and naturally(like talking) if he gets a good response he will then proceed and now he don't need motivation from a single post or comment, he/she have the whole community rooting for him, it's just about taking the first step and it's our(authors) work to make them do it.

Lots of ❀️ and Motivation πŸ’ͺ from my side to all the authors on DEV

 

Yes!! At the beginning of this year I totally had no confidence when it comes to blogging but the more you do it the easier it gets - you just gotta power through the first couple of posts, and don't have too many expectations on how well it will do.

 

Exactly, it's just people who haven't started yet think you and I had everything figured out when we started which is... wrong :)

 

I've been reading and following folks on DEV for over a year, but still haven't written a single post. I'm not sure I have anything worthy to say yet, since I am still learning. Your encouraging post makes me want to try though!

 

We are all still learning!
What would have been useful to younger Elie S. one year ago to know?
write about this

 

DEV has been the most friendly platform I've ever seen. I wrote my first two posts recently. When I joined, I thought "one day I'll be a programmer and I'll be able to write inspiring posts". But #shecoded was going on, and I thought "well, maybe I can write about the programmer I wanna be and my journey through that". I wrote my first post under #shecoded. I got followers and likes, nobody seemed to care that I'm not technical yet. That encouraged me to write my second one, I even got some comments! I'm thinking of keeping a one text a week routine. DEV is a powerful tool to keep me engaged in my learning path.

 
 

after a year reading posts on dev.to
here is my #firstpost dev.to/medlabs/learn-how-to-code-b...
thank's to you
Hope it's not that bad :)
Merci Jean-Michel

 

Congrats @medlabs ! That's a good piece of advice that you give here!
I do the same, I start with a project that works and try to break it in multiple ways to understand how everything work together.

 

Nota Bene:

To write this article, I have stolen ideas from a great episode from the Ladybug Podcast, so consider listening to it after you have written your first post :)

ladybug.dev/blogging-101

github.com/ladybug-podcast/ladybug...

 
 

Thanks for the nicely timed and informative post! Hope it encourages more people to write!

 

I just wrote mien a day ago. So proud of myself :)