My Home for 2021
Ever since I started writing on the internet, it was always for venting, business, or need. I never wrote for myself. Most of the time, I'm just trying to survive my debt, life decisions, or other hurdles in my path to freedom.
You see, I'm a man who wants to be free. I don't want to spend most of my life making dreams come true for someone else, like 90% of the planet. I'm a lot more invested in making my own dreams come true, too. If you find this a weird concept to swallow, don't worry – you're not alone.
But the problem with working for yourself is that you need to take a vacation from yourself, too. I promised myself I would publish one blog post per week on my blog, The Geek Writer, and broke that promise because life happened.
I wanted to create a product that I could sell, but I learned the hard way you need an existing audience. And I have never created an engaged one. I have an email list for the blog, and it has around a thousand people on it, but I'm not engaging with them every week as a blogger should. So, I need to build that consistency first before I do anything.
One thing I learned from other creators is that you need a plan. So, in this piece – the first on this personal blog – I will lay out where I plan to take The Geek Writer in the coming year. If you're interested in content creation, feel free to read on, and engage with me. Maybe there's something I'm doing wrong here? Feel free to reach out and let me know. You might also learn something new about your own plans while examining mine.
When I created The Geek Writer, I subjected its content to fall within a realm of topics about gaming, geek culture, content creation, and writing. As I grow as a person and a writer, I need to have a platform that is just for me. It's not just about my success as a writer, it's about the fact that The Geek Writer might incorporate more writers in the future, and at some point, the brand might not be mine anymore. I'm prepared to keep writing and creating new things, but I acknowledge that My first serious blog will not be my last.
But when I name a blog with my own personal name, you know it's here to stay. You would also be hard-pressed to admit that I can sell my own personal brand name to someone else. Nobody has an interest in inhabiting my name but me.
I could easily deploy a Gatsby self-hosted blog, but I don't have either the time or patience to deal with the overhead of maintenance for such a website.
That's why I chose Write.as for this personal blog. This is where I can be myself, own my content, and create beautiful blog posts on various topics.
This is more a return to my roots on Medium without being tightly coupled to the platform.
My Plans for 2021
2020 has been a hard year, but an enlightening one. I discovered a lot about myself and my abilities. I'm fast approaching age 34, and I have yet to have my big break. I'm still in debt, single, overweight, and bursting with ideas that my HSP mind won't always let me follow through with daily.
I have a few things in mind for 2021, and they all revolve around the fact that I want to break free from the rat race and my debt chains. This year I need to make big money. Now, if you know me, you know that making big money, for me, means creating something big to serve people. I'm a believer in not asking for money for something you don't believe in. I can't ask you to pay the price for something I don't feel is worth that price or more.
I'm also reading many Jeff Goins and Jonathan Green books on Kindle that enforces my belief that I should give people a lot of free content and let them decide between believing in me or not. I'm not out to convince anyone with persuasion – I will let my work do the talking for me.
I have seriously neglected my health in the last few years. Sleep deprivation was a serious problem because I was not sleeping enough and also not sleeping great. I'm drinking lots of Coke Zero every day. Around a bottle of 1.5 liters. If I had consumed that amount before 2 PM, I might have had better sleep, but I don't. I used to consume the beverage a lot at night.
I took a great Masterclass by Matt Walker and realized a lot about my sleep habits to realize I need to fix my sleep hygiene. I didn't cut off Coke Zero permanently, even though that's something I might do later on. But I did start to consume Caffeine Free Coke Zero past 2 PM. I might transfer completely to that beverage to control my caffeine intake better. I also pee less when I drink the caffeine-free one.
My sleep is a major factor that influences everything else in my life. If I'm not sleeping well, everything else suffers, too. In addition to improving my sleep, I plan to invest in some more exercise. My software engineer lifestyle is mostly about sitting all day, and I need to change that.
If you don't take care of yourself, nobody will do it for you.
Improve the management of my finances
If I'm going to be managing an online business, I need to have a clear picture of what money is coming in and what money is going out. I have purchased many tools over the past few months to create videos or other types of content. Some of these tools come with a subscription payment that I need to be aware of at all times.
Making sure my finances are in order will allow me to manage to pay my debt better and help foster less stress in my life.
The Geek Writer Weekly Blog Posts
A pillar of my content must be a weekly blog post on The Geek Writer. I can't engage my audience without at least publishing one blog post per week. That blog post should be a fantastic read for them. Jeff Goins wrote a really great idea to allow people to find the focus of their blog. They need to fill out this template:
Every (group of people) should/have X.
If you fill this out with something you believe in, you will find the basic idea that inspires all of your blog posts. I have chosen this phrase as my focus for The Geek Writer:
Every geek should have an online home to express themselves.
And it works. I already came up with 10 solid blog post titles for weekly 2021 posts. Now to come up with 42 more. With this number as my goal, I'm sure to succeed.
Get to a thousand email subscribers from those posts
I previously mentioned that I already have around a thousand email subscribers for The Geek Writer. While I want to rekindle my relationship with them, I need to increase my audience with fresh email subscribers engaged with the content I post weekly.
This will allow me to get to know these people more personally and ask them what kind of content they want to see more of and in what form.
The way to do that is to create a lead magnet that conforms to the idea – or worldview as Jeff calls it – to draw people to my content. If I create a lead magnet consistent with the content I publish, I'm on the right track.
Publish a video at least once a month on YouTube
I started a YouTube channel in 2020 and have posted only a few videos. My two most successful ones were interviews with Brennan Lee Mulligan. I need to create more content that is mine. I have a lot of opportunities to create videos based on the blog posts I create. Unfortunately, I don't believe I have the time to create videos in my busy schedule. But if I can fit in a video every two weeks, that could also drive traffic back to my blog or email list.
Maybe I should try short-form on YouTube. Meaning, publish videos to watch on a phone that covers small but effective solutions to my audience's problems.
Funny content seems to work better on TikTok. The production time for TikTok videos is significantly lower than publishing fully-fledged YouTube videos.
Keep investing in my Etsy Shop
Since September 2020, I manage an Etsy shop. That Etsy shop brought in a revenue of $2k since I opened it.
In terms of profit, this isn't a whole lot. There are a lot of expenses involved in managing a retail shop. Even though my storefront is online, I still need to pay to fulfill the items people buy from me.
In 2021, I want this shop to become a self-sufficient business. To make this happen, I need to hire people to do the work associated with it. I need to hire a marketing expert to deal with shop exposure, a graphic designer to keep coming up with new designs, and a personal assistant to actually publish new items to detach myself from this process to work on other things.
That expense is not something I can afford for now, but I might be able to afford it once I bring in profit from digital products. A trustworthy, active Etsy shop could very well replace my own day job and allow me to create a runway for other investments.
If I want to take this seriously, I need to open up shop on other websites, like Amazon, too. My designs are not exclusive to Etsy, and my fulfillment service has integration with any platform I need.
Update as I go
No plan is set in stone. As I progress within 2021, I will come back to update this blog post as I learn more about my capabilities.
There's always something new to learn and improve our process. Did you learn something new from this post? Do you have any questions or feedback? Feel free to reach out.
Thank you for reading!
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