Writing With No Excuses
By Davey Strus /

I should start a blog.

If you have any presence on the web, you’ve no doubt thought that to yourself at one time or another. Maybe you’ve talked yourself out of it, because you don’t feel like you have anything unique to say, and thus find it terribly self-aggrandizing to indulge in the notion. I’ve struggled with that myself. Thankfully, I’ve found a loophole: This is a blog for Fretless, not for me!

In the elapsed time since Fretless came into being, we have organized events, given presentations, mentored developers, and written content for other forums. So many times we’ve lamented that we had no official forum for sharing what we’ve learned with anyone but a local audience (unless we could share it in 140 characters or less). Just as the cobbler’s kids have no shoes, the web consultancy has no blog.

We now have a place to post online, so that excuse is removed. But I’m sure if we really put our minds to it, we can find another excuse.

Oh, I’ve got one: Writing is hard!

To my writing classes, I used to open by saying that anybody who could talk could also write. Having cheered them up with this easy-to-grasp ladder, I replaced it with a huge and loathsome snake: ‘How many people in this class, would you say, can talk? I mean really talk?’ — Christopher Hitchens1

Putting aside Hitch’s status as one of the most infamously polarizing writers in the English language (especially in his final years), I love that quote.2 Regardless of how articulate I feel when I speak, I’m always horrified to watch or hear recordings of myself. Not only is writing hard—talking is hard!

The ability to write well is, however, incredibly important. It’s unreasonable to expect to get better without practice, so here we go.

Are you blogging, or otherwise publishing your own writing online? If not, what is standing in your way?

  1. Hitchens, Christopher (2012). Mortality. Atlantic Books Ltd. View excerpt on Google Books. [return]
  2. Great idea, Davey—open the company blog with a Hitchens quote! [return]