Newsletter Final Draft

andrewtsao  •  16 Sept 2023   •    

Read the latest issue here!

Writing online consistently has helped me become the person I am today.

The first time I wrote online and pressed “publish” was on January 7th, 2020 on a tool that no longer exists called 200 Words A Day.

I could not find a screenshot of my profile, but this was what the tool looked like.

I had a New Year resolution of wanting to write more, but at the time, the idea of writing daily in a notion or Google Doc felt very lonely. On the other hand, I had absolutely no confidence in starting and publishing a blog.

But in this tiny corner of the internet, I decided that it was easy to just focus on showing up daily to write 200 words or more and see how long I could keep up the streak.

And I did exactly that for 273 consecutive days. Most days I had absolutely no idea what I was going to write about, and I would often wait until 11:30 pm to write just so that I wouldn’t break my streak.

Through writing daily, I gain the confidence to:
Created my first monthly newsletter on music (which I am proud to say I have published 41 issues so far)

Showed up daily on Twitter/X to write short-form content

Wrote my first-ever guest blog post for a no-code tool that I love and use every day

Started my coaching business

Became a startup mentor where I run workshops to teach students from the National University of Singapore about building products

Started my new newsletter that you’re reading now

In addition to the tangible wins, what was surprising to me was seeing the internal transformation that was happening. I’ve started noticing just how much more confident I became with expressing myself. I started to gain more clarity in my thoughts and emotions, creativity in problem-solving, and finally, the ability to think more critically and synthesize experiences and knowledge that I gain each day. Most importantly, writing daily has given me the optimism to tackle a world in all its unpredictability, and I’m incredibly grateful for it.

If my writing journey story resonated with you, and you want to start writing consistently, here are 3 ways you can get started:

Tip 1: State your intentions out loud and just start
Starting is always the hardest and the easiest.

There are a million reasons you can read online about why you should pick up a writing habit, but only you would know and can decide why it’s important to you.

Write down the why, then speak it out loud to yourself. If you want you can even use this as your first prompt to expand on.

Questions you can ask yourself during this process:

What are the baby or atomic steps you can take each day to fulfill your intentions?

What are the emotions that come up for you during this process?

What are some limiting beliefs or discomforts that you still have?

Tip 2: Find a writing community
Online writing communities are the open secret to developing a daily writing habit.

I would not have been able to sustain a writing habit if it wasn’t for an online community that made me feel safe enough to show up every day.

✨ Personal Favorite:
Lifelog- built by Jason Leow, a friend, and fellow 200 Words a Day Alumni, this is where I still pay and write daily. It’s for anyone who wants to start and continue developing a writing habit.

🚢 Popular in my network:
Ship30for30- a cohort-based writing course that encourages you to write 30 essays for 30 consecutive days out in public.

😎 Most Underrated:
IRL writing communities- sometimes nothing beats the real-life camaraderie you get from being in the same room as someone who just gets it. I recommend starting by looking at your local library (or even museums) to see if they are hosting free creative writing workshops for anyone to attend.

Tip 3: Make it fun and fresh for yourself
I’ve learned that whenever I find a way to make something fun for myself, it’s a lot easier for me to develop the intrinsic motivation to show up each day to do something.

Even in writing, there’s ways you can make it bit more entertaining and fun for yourself, especially in the beginning.

✨ Personal Favorite:
Obsidian- this is where I start and end my day (literally). It gives me a lot of comfort knowing that this free tool allows me to create my “second brain”, write even when I’m offline, allows me to connect my writing if needed, and is stored in a file format that is “durable, not only for posterity, but also for your future self.”

🧠 Here’s a neat little visual representation of all my daily writing

💣 If You Like to Write Dangerously:
Squibler- This tool encourages you to keep writing for an amount of time set by you. The crux is this: if you stop writing for too long, everything will be erased and you’ll be forced to start again, so tread lightly!

🎶 If You’re Feeling Jazzy:
JazzKeys- Have you ever had a dream where you can compose jazz while writing a blog post? While dream no further, this tool helps you do precisely that. It even allows you to share your writing/composition. Here’s mine.

How can I help you?
If you are interested in working more closely with me, here are 2 ways I can help you:

  1. Apply for a free 1-hour coaching call with me to get personalized guidance on building digital products, without using a line of code. I help aspiring and non-technical founders find purpose, joy, and creativity by empowering them to build out their ideas using no-code tools 💡🚀

  2. If you have a business you want to promote, feel free to reply to this email or DM me on Twitter.

And that’s it for now! ✨

Thank you for reading this edition all the way to the end. I appreciate you 🙏
Did you like this post? It would mean THE WORLD to me if you could share this on your socials and tag me at @atsaotsao. Thanks again!

Hope to see you in the next issue!


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