It's been a while since I have blogged, I must admit. I've been very busy with the release of the official DuckDuckGo app for Windows 8, but that's only partly an excuse. Truth is, I often have a hard time getting started for a blog post, even when I have this great idea in my head. When it comes to blogging, it's more than just an idea you need. You have to work this idea out, you have to find some compelling arguments and counter arguments for the reader to evaluate. It's all a matter of how much you want to put into it, but I'm usually very critical of what I write.
All this may have helped to prevent me from blogging over the last couple of months, but it has not prevented me from writing. A couple of years ago, I read about a website called 750words.com, which promotes writing 750 words a day, in private, just for you. It was supposed to help you clear your mind and get ideas flowing for the rest of the day. I had a look at the site back then, but never got really interested enough at the time. Back in December last year, when it got very clear to me I wasn't going to pick up my blog anytime soon, I went back and decided it was time to pick up that habit.
Although I haven't truly made a daily habit out of it, it has since become "this thing I do" whenever I feel like writing or contemplating (or ranting) about something. And as a developer, but also a father and a husband, it has really been the most helpful tool whenever I needed to get things straight in my head. Taking care of a kid with both parents doing a full-time can be a challenge in itself, but when taking on the extra responsibility of developing for an international company you hold in very high respect, things sometimes need some straightening out (which isn't to say I don't love every minute of it ).
750words is like blogging without that added responsibility, without the little editor inside you constantly evaluating everything you say. It's also a great way to evaluate a future blogpost, so you can get some things straight, or just get it out of your system and realize it wasn't such a great topic for a blogpost after all.
The best moment for me to do this is early in the morning. It's too early to be subjected to a lot of outside influences, and your mind hasn't really kickstarted away into the regular routine of your daily grind. As an added benefit, whenever I get into that flow early in the morning, it tends to last for the rest of my day. New ideas keep popping up, long after I'm done writing.
In the end, it's only a diary in the cloud with some fancy features in it ( it analyses how you feel, what you talk about most, ... ) but it's a great way to get your day started, clear your head and stay fresh and invigorated for the rest of the day.