It’s August (albeit the last day of August), meaning it’s been one whole year since I started this website! To celebrate my website’s birth month, I created this hodgepodge of a post to reminisce on how it started, why I love it, doors it’s opened, and plans for the future.
As I’ve mentioned before, I wanted to start blogging in college, but made excuses to avoid it. I was scared other’s would think it’s stupid or that my writing sucks. After a year of writing, that hasn’t happened once.
In August of 2020 I finally took that leap of faith and publish my first post: Hello World in 8 Programming Languages. It’s a super simple post, but it was what I needed to get the ball rolling.
Since then I’ve published 62 blogs (mostly CTF writeups), 8 newsletters, and have several drafts in the chamber.
Pros and Cons
As with everything in life, there are positives and negatives. Overall, I’d say the pros of blogging outweighs the cons, but I think it’s important to acknowledge both. These are my personal pros and cons of blogging and owning a website
Before blogging, I liked to journal. It’s allows me to get my thoughts out of my head and share them with others.
- opens new doors
I got my current gig in the Air Force largely due to my CTF writeups. The effort I put into documenting my problem solving approach showed that I was determined and had the skills necessary for the job.
- community support
Readers have liked, commented and shared my posts on social media. Seeing people like my content is endearing and motivating - but it’s still a feeling I’m not used too. I think my most “viral” post was writing about my eJPT experience.
Writing is hard. I still love it though. But some days I’d rather just play video games.
- writer’s block
Some days I’m not burnt out, but can’t think of a single thing I want to write about. This has lead to large blocks of no content, or content that is only CTF writeups. For instance, in November 2020 I only had one post that was not a CTF writeup, and I did not post anything at all in June (I drafted 70% of a post but never published it). Furthermore, the newsletter has been nothing but inconsistent.
To help assuage this, I keep a running list of blog topics in Notion.
This blog has gone through many phases and transitions. It originally began as a WordPress site before switching over to Hugo in November 2020. WordPress was just to big and bloated for what I wanted.
Once switching things over to Hugo I spent days debating on which theme to choose. Ultimately, I stuck with the clean, elegant Bear Blog Theme.
I really wish I kept screenshots of all the changes and edits over time!
Hopes for the future
Over half of my posts are about CTF writeups. They are easier to write than organic posts because they are simply me documenting my solution to a challenge. However, in order to grow as a writer and become a true content creator, I need to create more original content.
I plan to write more “learn with me” style posts akin to Julia Evans. I’ve always been drawn to her style of writing.
If you’ve made it this far, why are you still here? But honestly, thanks for reading, sharing, and engaging. This post was all over the place because I wanted to pour all of my thoughts into this one. It always makes my day to interact with readers, content creators, and fellow hackers.
Happy bday to the website :)