10 Powerful Lessons of Blogging From a Software Engineer

If you’d asked me if I’d ever make money from my blog, I’d have said no. I don’t have a special talent or gift, nor do I have a writer to mentor me.

I’ve made more than $100,000 from writing in the last 3 years.

My Freelancing (Books, Blogging, Mentorship, Sponsorship, Speaking etc…) income:

  • 2017: $00
  • 2018: $00
  • 2019: $500
  • 2020: $2,000
  • 2021: $15,000
  • 2022: $50,000
  • 2023: $50,000+ till today

Goal: $100K/ per year without many obligations.

If I can make money from writing, you can too. Keep shooting!

Rough estimates! From Jan 2023 to today, I’ll create a spreadsheet, make it public, and update this post later.

1-Blogs: Number of blogs:

  • 20+ Average charge per blog: $900

2- Book Sale on Gumroad and Amazon: Earnings from the book: $4,000+

3- Book Sale: Earnings from book sale to education platform: $12,000

4- Sponsorship Threads: Number of sponsorship threads: 4-6

  • The average charge per sponsorship thread: is $1,000

5- Miscellaneous Earnings:

  • Newsletter sponsorship: $3,000
  • Medium: $2,000
  • Small Bets Class: $1,000

Writing has a huge professional impact on my tech career, and I continue to suggest it to software engineers, especially those new to the industry, to stand out and move up the ladder or have better future opportunities.

You might believe that software development is only about writing code, but this is not the case!

Communication with others is an important aspect of the job And, as we all move toward more remote work, written communication is becoming increasingly important.

It’s fantastic, but it’s difficult to get started.

Of course, a developer knows how to start a blog – but the difficult part is finding your voice, deciding what to write that is good enough for others to read, and developing a long-term writing habit.


Let’s Get Started with Blogging

1- Blog titles are 80% of the work, but you write them as the very last thing.

If you’re starting a new blog then the lowest hanging fruit in “Blogging” is to make your titles more clickable.

How to Generate a Blog Title

How To Write Blogging Titles as a Software Engineer

2- Learn the “Art of Storytelling in Writing” A blog should be written so that the reader can use the information and come away from it feeling as though they learned something new.

Take a look at this guide, which has been viewed by over 100,000 people, indicating that it is popular.

A Software Developer’s Guide To Writing

3- Don’t worry about duplicate ideas: There’s always room for high-quality thoughts/opinions/feedback as we all have something unique to offer because we learned things differently and can project ideas with a unique angle.

E.g. I shared my experience with “Why You Should Learn ReactJS” despite the many React blogs you might have read on the internet!

You can see the views on DevTo and Hashnode for this blog.

How I Made $30,000 From Writing in 1 Year
Why You Should Learn ReactJs

A developer’s voice is about how they write, not what they write.

4- Not every developer can afford or is interested in “Networking events” so just write on the Internet.

Blogging is a scalable professional activity – write a blog, stay remote, no need to attend events/conferences, just put your ideas on the internet.”

Let’s see what the writer (David Perell) has to say about networking.

How to do Traditional Networking and Finding Others

• Go to conferences

• Attend fancy parties

• Go to an expensive college

How to do Networking on Internet by David Perell

How to do Internet Networking and Let Others Find You

• Write online

• Start a company

• Make YouTube videos

All of the interesting and unique people I met online happened after I accomplished something and continued to do so or tried to do so repeatedly.

If you do interesting things, founders, creators, millionaires and then billionaires will contact you. They also become your friends but They’ll never be found at any networking events.

Example:

How a Startup Founder Discovered My Medium Blog and Cold-Emailed Me

How a Startup Founder Discovered My Medium Blog and Cold-Emailed Me

5- Start by writing about what you know and copy your favourite writers- “No software developer began as a great writer.” Start writing about what you already know, working in your career and share it with the community.

You’ll be surprised at how many lives you’ll touch.

Copying or Originality paradox

Worried about people copying your blogs and competing with you?

Sell yourself as a personal brand instead of your blog. people can never copy your personal brand.

Many of history’s greatest writers found their voice by imitating others. We learn about ourselves by imitating others and observing how our individuality emerges over time.

Copying is legal. Blogs, Youtube video ideas, website designs etc… aren’t copyrightable.

I copied many big writers’ into my blogs but in my unique style and voice add my actual work experience and It’s OK.

Yeah, we all inspire and learn from each other. But You must learn to differentiate substantially and consider what the original creator does or does not have certain characteristics and qualities!

“Keep copying/getting inspired and continue writing! And you slowly find your own style in blogging.”

IMHO being dishonest about copying is probably the bad way to go about it. Better to be open about it publicly “Yes I copied it” and then build up your own audience and brand.

“Crediting people’s work as inspiration is good ethics”

Don’t feel bad about copying someone else’s idea for a tweet or blog post or book or course or community or app. They stole it from someone else.

“You still have a long way to go if other people aren’t copying your style, product or ideas”

but when I’m saying copying it doesn’t mean you take someone else’s blog posts and copy and paste the content line by line to your website my point is copying your favourite blogger’s writing style is fine but what you’ll achieve in copying the exact word-to-word.

Nothing even Google will punish the plagiarism content and you’ll never build your credibility!

6- “Don’t look for a strategy; look for your unique voice and style.”

Option Vs Obligation

Every post I’ve written has made the next one easier to write.

The more you write, the better you will become, but you must put in the effort.

Treat each blog post as a small bet and make a commitment, time! You’ll discover a lot.

Option Vs Obligation in Blogging

7- The initial years of blogging are boring.

“Despite very good writing, a blog would grow slowly. Big views would seem to be a distant dream. The effect of writing kicks off only after a certain amount of time and then it picks up the momentum. Patience and persistence are the key.”

Blogging is boring but it works

8- Success in blogging is not linear, Embrace some randomness and keep writing

Having lots of drafts is nice. Having lots of drafts you must publish is not nice. Some drafts will never go in public.

Three lessons from my first three blog posts

●  Writing about my experiences in the tech industry can be a great way to connect with others and share valuable insights.

● Creating an online presence on social media platforms like Twitter can help me expand the reach of my writing and engage with a larger audience.

●  Sharing my background and tech journey can be inspiring and helpful to other people who are just starting out in the tech field.

9- If you want to write for a living think “blogging” like a business and be creative! – It’s an asset. Instead of paying attention, people give it to you.

“Just write poorly, and continue to write poorly, in public, until you can write better! It’s boring, but it works.”

The easiest software engineer can start sharing their work on the internet and writing is one the best way to get started and it will pay off well in lots of things not only just money. I met online much more talented people than offline work! And you build networking across the world with tons of opportunities!

If your work isn’t online, it doesn’t exist because for out-of-the-box opportunities and networking to occur, you must write and be seen—really seen on the internet.

Writing helps me in many ways and opens up more opportunities! Having my work online is like having a personal recruiter looking for chances for me 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 30 days a month, 365 days a year!

How I get paid in smallbets community

If I hadn’t started writing three years ago, I would never have been asked to speak to the small bets community.

The outcome; not only I receive full marks from my mentor but I received $1,000

Smallbets community discord
$1,000 Payment received from small bets LLC

10- A blog or a personal website is a much better way to stand out as a developer than your resume or CV.


Conclusion

No matter how good your writing, SaaS, side projects etc.. are, building a quality audience will take time and some people will dislike you and your style and it’s OK.

It’s a slow process… because large followings don’t necessarily lead to loyalty and customers!

Writing online is the real equality in this world. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you live, how much money you make, or what you do for a living. Anyone can publish their ideas online for free and get their ideas out there.

Write and publish 100 blog posts in the next 36 months if you want to succeed at blogging and become a good writer as a software engineer.

How to increase your luck as a software engineer!

  • 2010: Blog
  • 2020: Blog
  • 2023: Blog

New ways of distribution emerged, but what gets distributed hasn’t (career stories that entertain, inspire, and educate).

It costs $0.00 to start a blog and become a standout developer in tech.

If you need some more inspiration read this: How I Made $30,000 From Writing In 1 Year

Feedback on A Developer's Guide to Blogging
Feedback on A Developer's Guide to Blogging
Feedback on A Developer's Guide to Blogging

I received many professional opportunities just because of my writing

It’s boring, but it works. Start a blog in 2023.


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