How to show your work

The book show your work talks about living a life as a creator regardless of field, profession, or career.


The book “Show your work” by Austin Kleon opens with this quote –

For artists, the great problem to solve is how to get oneself noticed

Honore De Balzac

True indeed, whatever creative/artistic field youโ€™re in, most people struggle to get their work in front of an audience. Leave alone, people think they should hide and hoard their work which the author calls โ€œLone geniusโ€. In short, it is the myth we have as normal people who think that there has to be something inborn us to be called a genius, they operate alone, a lightbulb idea strikes, and boom! They end up creating something that people follow like mad. Mostly shown in movies/shows, that, fortunately, does not exist in real life.

What you’ve to be is the opposite of a “Lone genius” i.e. being open about what you’re working on, and consistently posting pieces of your work, ideas, and whatever you’re learning or in the process of something.

Inhibitions people have

If you’re reading this, then I presume that you are indulged in some kind of activity, skill, or trade that you enjoy. And you’re at a certain level may be an amateur, intermediate, or a pro player. You’ll think what do I’ve to share I’m not so good as other people are. I’ll answer this with this quote from the book.

Give what you have. To someone, it may be better than you dare to think.

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Just freaking start sharing what work you do. You’ll be exposed to tons of opportunities with what you do right now.

Online, everyone - the artist and the curator, the master and the apprentice, the expert and the amateur  - has the ability to contribute something.

Choose any platform/media to share, social networks like Twitter, Reddit, dribble, Behance, Facebook, Instagram. There’s a platform for every genre now. GO, SHARE SOMETHING!

Move forward

If you’re not going to promote your work, nobody is going to. You’ve to take the leap and become discoverable in this pool.

Put yourself, and your work, out there every day and you'll start meeting some amazing people.

After I wrote my first post on the dev platform and it become sort of viral and has got more than 15,000 page views. Spend a lot of time crafting it, and was featured by the @practicalDev team. It was an achievement for sure but wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t publish it. So start taking immediate action.

Months later got some paid writing opportunities, I give credits to writing my very first article which gave me the confidence that I could do it too. And that’s maybe is the primary motivation of starting this blog to document/share my learning with the world and build a rapport alongside.

This is the video by Ali Abdaal that inspired me to add “Show your work to my reading list. Watch it here.

Credits: Ali Abdaal

So this blog

As I said, the article I published, and show your work gave me the motivation to start my personal space on the internet free from any limitations or indulgence. Registered the domain a few months ago but didn’t get the time to set it up due to other things and exams. No more procrastination now ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m taking action after reading the book and you should too. Go on any social platform and share whatever you’re doing, designing, coding, painting, cooking, building products, etc.

Leave all the embarrassment behind, an expert was once a beginner too.

Conclusion of my learnings.

To summarize the book talks about how to get discovered, build a community around things you love, then how to leverage your network to turn it into full-time opportunities that give you the freedom to live your life.
Everyone loves to spend their time, energy, and attention on things they enjoy whether it’s by learning business, a craft, or trade.

Follow these steps, choose whatever platform you like, or start with a personal space like a blog.

  1. Learn it
  2. Practice/indulge in it
  3. Promote/share it
  4. Document it

I bid you bye, If you want to have a firsthand experience do give “Show your work” a read.

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