personal 100daystooffload writing

My first blog post was published 10 years back on 21st June. I wanted to reflect on these last 10 years so here is a post. I started blogging on Svbtle where I continued for probably 4-5 more posts. After that moved to a URL with Jekyll for building pages. Then some time later I bought my domain,, and started using an Emacs based set up via some custom scripts and a personal visual style that finally stayed with me for the longest and still works.

Here are a few other statistical facts that I could find:

  1. I wrote \(171,930\) published words on this website till now. This is around two novel length content.
  2. There are \(43\) posts on the main blog, excluding this one. \(87\) on journal. \(46\) weekly log entries from when I was trying to keep my weekly reviews public. \(77\) pages currently in the wiki, though this number doesn't make much sense since wiki pages keep changing and dying.

These numbers are not very impressive. Ten years is enough time to build a very popular blog with extensive content and high viewership. But I still feel pretty satisfied since—like most of the personal blogs on the internet—engagement was never my primary goal.

From the first post in 2014, I have realized that writing helps me think deeply and handle complexities that I could not by just relying on my mind. When I write, I start with a preconception laid out in words and keep editing till I have a much more refined thought which could even be opposite of what I started with. This journey is highly engaging and I have seen myself incessantly working on a draft through nights and odd hours not because I have a deadline to meet, but because evolving ideas in text has been very addictive.

Of course not all writings have this shape where I start with an idea and come out with an epiphany. But even discounting that, this personal space to reflect and think about ideas has made me progress more than what I could have done without. There are probably other tools to help you deliberate over thoughts and produce something valuable. One writing-less proxy involves having a network of people who you constantly talk to. That has some other benefits of its own, but still doesn't solve for a knowledge workflow that lets you go beyond the limitations of individual minds and conversations. We are talking about order of magnitude improvements and not just any positive change. You can also just focus on reading a lot, but that borrows someone else's views and the way they evolved an idea. Without pairing with writing, reading on its own sometimes can even be harmful since it can give you a sense of having good ideas without knowing how to develop them.

In case you have been indecisive about setting up your personal website or similar space on the web, please consider this a push from my side to do so. And no, microblogging and social media pages don't count as replacement for a proper website in my humble opinion. Those platforms have different incentives and are not meant for processing and working with deep thoughts as something like a long form journal would. Try exploring IndieWeb to understand more about how to get in. Also your writings don't have to be public, but doing so helps in putting more accountability and raising the commitment to quality.