Blogging on a whim


On May 16, 2014, I bought a domain on a whim. I’d been sitting in the NOCC (Network Operations & Control Center) at my employer, helping with maintenance. I was waiting on another team to perform their task, and champing at the bit.

My boss was in the room with me, and teasing me about my impatience. He very jokingly said, “It’s like you’re ImpatientDBA.com!” Within seconds, I was checking to see if the domain was available. Within minutes, I owned ImpatientDBA.com. I had no idea what I was going to do with that domain, but it was mine.

Over the next week, I set up a Blogger website, tied my domain to it, and thought about what I’d done at work recently that might be worth sharing. It wasn’t pretty or fancy–but it existed and I was excited about it.

Blogging in 2014

On May 22, 2014, I published my first post. I don’t have the stats for it anymore, but I think I got fewer than 10 hits for that first article. Five of them were from me, and the rest were from my coworkers. (To this day, fewer than 100 people have read it). It didn’t matter–I wrote a thing that I was proud about, and I had shouted into the abyss of the internet to tell them about it.

On July 8, 2014, I published my second blog post, and on July 19, I realized that the am2.co domain was available and I bought that. ImpatientDBA.com remained my brand and blogging domain, but it felt baller to also have a three-character domain.

I published my third and final post of 2014 in November.

I only wrote three posts that year. My site still looked pretty ugly. I was still excited by it–but every post seemed really hard. I set a very high bar for myself, and had a self-imposed pressure to produce something that was both unique and perfect. That pressure made writing posts harder, but ultimately resulted in some pretty solid posts that I was very proud of.

Impatient DBA? Is that smart branding?

Impatience can be channeled to make a great DBA. I don’t have the patience to press the same button every day–I automate it. I don’t have patience for inefficient processes & procedures–I question business processes, and seek to streamline them. I don’t have patience for slow code–I seek to tune it and make it better. I don’t have patience for complacency–I strive to do better.

I’ve since dropped the Impatient DBA branding, in favor of my am2.co domain, and made the primary branding my name. I’m proud of what I blog, and I want to write it under my name, not a pseudonym. But I still proudly describe myself as impatient–even in job interviews.

Five years of blogging

Over the years, I’ve tried to get into a steady cadence, but it just hasn’t happened. I blog in fits & spurts as my schedule and inspiration allows. I still hope to hit that regular cadence some day, but it just hasn’t happened. Some days, writing is harder than others. Some posts are better quality than others. I keep blogging because I really love teaching: sharing both my knowledge and my mistakes with others. Not everyone is comfortable sharing their own experiences–but I am happy to share many of mine, in the hope that others can learn without repeating my mistakes. It can be hard, but it can also be very fun and exciting.

Ultimately, that decision to start blogging was the best decision of my professional career. My career feels more fulfilling, like I am making a difference. In the five years since starting this blog, I’ve gone from mid-level DBA to Database Architect and Microsoft Data Platform MVP. It’s given me a platform to make a real difference in the community, even beyond the tech community. Blogging isn’t just about sharing what I know–the act of writing (and researching) a blog post helps me learn the topic better.

Blogging isn’t for everyone, but I challenge you to consider giving it a try. It doesn’t have to be fancy or pretty (lord knows this site wasn’t pretty back in 2014). But you never know–you might surprise yourself, and it might prove to be helpful.

Over the next week, I’m going to write five posts celebrating my first five years of blogging. The posts will celebrate anniversary of that week in May 2014 when I bought my domain and wrote my first blog post. They’ll be one part nostalgia, one part (hopefully) inspiration to others to share their knowledge, and a dash of lessons learned the hard way. Read about Year One here.

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