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Starting: November 4, 2018 🏎

Launching: January 1, 2019! 🚀

Who the heck are you?

I’m Daniel. 👋

I’ve been a developer for 25 years. Yep, I started coding pre-internet. My first paying development job was when I was 18. I had a paid internship to develop a database in MS Fox Pro for a now defunct telco. I then held underwhelming jobs in the IT department of a few large corporations.

More recently, for the past 10 years  I’ve morphed into being a freelancer building ecommece sites to a WordPress (PHP + javascript) focused developer. Currently I own an ecommerce development agency and sell WooCommerce plugins.

On the personal side I have a wife and three elementary age kids. I’m the sole income earner for our family of five (this will come into play a little later).

What is #BUILDSZN?

#BUILDSZN: (n) Build season is a fixed (two months) time of focused attention at building my skills that will help me found a saas company.

Build season, or #BUILDSZN, is the name I’ve given the next eight weeks of learning, building, and launching. Because of my tendency to procrastinate I’m putting specific dates on this:

Scheduled Updates

I’ll be doing this in conjunction with my current full time job. I’m not taking any special time off for this. I’m starting now because there’s no time like the present. And if I don’t start now I might never start.

This is my commitment to building in public.

Why “szn”?

szn from ye old urban dictionary

This is just me using a slang term inappropriately, but hey, yolo? 😂

Why are you doing this?

The reason I’m doing this might be in reaction to the latest wave of #wpdrama or that I spend my days building WordPress sites for other people, or that I sell plugins for an ecommerce platform I don’t own. I’ve had a feeling that I want to do something different for some time now.

I want to explore the world outside of WordPress. I want to avoid being a tech dinosaur where my skills are limited to a technology that’s losing relevancy. I want to build an asset that I own. I want to experience all the success and failure in the process of building. I want to get better at skills other than development like marketing, customer research, and design.

As I mentioned above I’m the sole income earner of my family and my time is limited. The limited nature of swapping hours for dollars is why I started building WooCommerce plugins 7 years ago. “Build once, support+sell many times” has increased my earning ability, but I want to super charge that ability by building a service that provides value to customers and is worth charging monthly for. I also want this asset to be sellable if the opportunity arises. Having diversified streams of income translates to security for my family.

Finally, I’m doing this because procrastination and fear have won too often and I’m tired of not trying. It’s time to try.

Worth mentioning

I’m not entering this straight out of college or a coding bootcamp. As I mentioned before I’ve been coding for 25 years and freelanced/owned my own company for 10 of those years. I’m starting from a different place than someone else, but I might also be right where you are now.

I know what it’s like to sell to clients, handle a support queue being battered by tickets from customers, and write code that needs to scale to hundreds of visits per minute.

That doesn’t mean I have all the answers. I have little experience outside of the WordPress codebase. I’m not great at writing copy that converts. I don’t have a clue when it comes to paid ads. And I only have a vague concept of what it takes to setup a saas where it doesn’t fall over like a toddler in a wave pool at the first sign of stress.

There’s plenty of things I need to learn.

What’s next?

Think of this as my own personal Startup Weekend / Tech Stars / Tech Incubator, except I’m self-funding, and self-directing.

The goal for #buildszn is after the two months to have an app that I can launch to customers or to have more knowledge about building and launching an app. I already have an idea for the app I’m going to build and to be totally honest I bought the domain last week!

I’ll be posting updates here and to my email list based on the schedule I listed above. I’ll be as transparent as possible and share real numbers. That’s what I’d be interested to see so I’m guessing it’s what others would want to see too.

Are you interested in following along with me on this journey? Let’s go!

 

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