I had just recently published my yearend post for my newsletter, Working Title. It’s been almost 2 years since I first started writing on it. Was the investment of time and energy worth it? Maybe. Would I recommend this activity to others? Yes. Have I learned anything exclusively from this act of persistent writing through newsletters? Absolutely.
Some thoughts about what I’ve learned from starting a newsletter:
Writing is an act of thinking made public.
I don’t need a quote to confirm what’s already pretty obvious: Writing exposes a person’s brain. A trick I often use every time I find myself stuck on a difficult problem: I write about it. Everything from defining what the problem is to articulating, sometimes not very well, the big picture, it helps to truly (and I mean, truly) understand things from first principles. At the end of the day, words are the most accessible medium we have. It pays to master them. It pays even more to be brave enough & share them.
Networking as an experience, typically, sucks. Connection-building through content creation is a better, more superior alternative.
When you share a piece of you through the work that you do, you tend to put yourself in such a unique position for serendipity. Especially with the internet, user-generated data finds a way and it only takes ONE to lead you to that rare, like-minded person, a problem-ridden, design-starved startup, a future colleague or simply an accidental friend. I can attest to having encounters with at least one of these. Newsletters isn’t just a platform. It’s a bridge. A damn valuable one for people, if you ask me.
The ROI for writing is flow state.
Flow state is a fleeting moment, a little congested bubble of tremendous energy, a temporary state of mind. It is difficult to describe for people who don’t chase it, don’t want it or worse, do not care for it. In a nutshell, flow is a force that makes anything and everything possible. It is both internal and externally-driven. I can never get enough of this. Behind every post, draft or published, is a jolt of it. Clearly, it is more potent and more powerful than any other motivator. To me, anyway.
Write everyday, even if it is not easy. A message I told myself from day one when I was wrapped with anxiety, excitement, fear and a plethora of other emotions that come naturally with creative pursuits.
Outside of personal relationships, nothing made me feel more alive than this longterm relationship I have with words. I consider this a priceless asset.
About Working Title
Working Title is a design-focused newsletter born in the quarantine-era (Summer 2020). I explore the themes of user experience, design methodologies, business and philosophy for each of the entry. I value breadth, above all. Inconsistent releases. Much like real-life conversations, I’ll make every entry worth your time.
If you don’t know where to start, I would suggest to read these:
More about the author
Nikki is a Sr. UX Designer working for a data company in New Jersey. In the last 2 years, she has helped design & build a holographic platform, contracted for a research team inside Fidelity Investments, worked in the Design Operations side of an e-commerce company, mentored brilliant design students/career-changers, advocated for UX best practices at RookieUp, have co-taught UX courses at General Assembly and have also contributed directly to the growth of the Mentorship program on UXPA-New York. Designing for a better world is her life. She also runs her own newsletter, working title, about her thoughts on the future and more.