Happy Monday, everyone!
We made it to the 37th issue!
This week’s issue is going to be a little bit different than normal. I wanted to take some time to do a reflection on the questions I’ve been asking our indie developers 😊
If you’ve read a few of the previous issues, you know that I start my interviews with the same five questions:
- What is your name? Where do you live?
- Introduce yourself. Education? Background? Main job? Interests outside of tech? Interests inside of tech?
- Have you ever considered yourself an indie developer?
- What got you started/interested in creating your applications outside of your “normal” job?
- How do you balance your time between friends/family, work, hobbies, and indie dev?
I’ve used the same five questions since the Issue #1 with Simon and Kane. To be honest, I had no idea what I was doing or where I was planning on taking Indie Dev Monday from that start. It was a spur-of-the-moment idea that I wanted to execute right away. Today I want to break down why I decided to keep asking these five questions and why I think they are important to the Indie Dev Monday spotlights 😇
1️⃣ What is your name? Where do you live?
These are simple questions but I don’t ever want to ever assume I’ve pulled the correct personal information from the internet 🙃 I want to make certain the spotlighted indie developer is comfortable with the name and location that I will be using in the issue. They may want to be called a different name. They may want a different hometown or no hometown shared. Any answer is fine with me! I just want sure it makes the spotlighted indie happy.
I think the location, even though a simple question, is a very important question. Where do indie developers live? Is there an indie developer hub? 🤷♂️ Is it San Franciso or Silicon Valley? Is it New York? The United Kingdom? India? Australia?
👏 We 👏 are 👏 everywhere
I’m so happy I’ve asked this question from the start because I’ve been updating a world map with all of the spotlight indie devs. We have a lot of pins placed all over the world so far! It’s so cool to see that the indie dev spirit exists everywhere and they are finding success from everywhere.
This map has also helped me realize where I need to focus the future issues 😊 I need to focus on getting indie dev interviews from missing regions and countries. This “Where do you live?” question is all about inclusivity and that is why it’s important to me.
2️⃣ Introduce yourself. Education? Background? Main job? Interests outside of tech? Interests inside of tech?
This question doesn’t provoke any deeps thoughts or missions but I think it sets up up the indie developer spotlight for the rest of the interview. This allows the indie developer to write their own origin story 😁 We get to learn about how they got to where they are.
As the indie developer, I wanted this to be a nice warmup for the indie dev before answering some of the harder more specific questions.
As a reader, I wanted this question to bring an emotional connection to the indie developer before reading the more specific questions asked later on.
3️⃣ Have you ever considered yourself an indie developer?
I’ve been asked “What is an indie developer?” on multiple occasions and… this is a really hard question to answer. There’s an easy answer of “A developer working independently to release software” but like 🤮 In my opinion, there is no one right answer to this question.
An indie developer doesn’t need to be someone working full-time on their apps. But it can be. An indie developer doesn’t need to be someone making money on their apps. But they could. An indie developer doesn’t mean you are apps are the highest priority thing in your life. But they can be. Indie developers come in all shapes and sizes and I think Indie Dev Monday has represented a lot of those.
I ask people to be in Indie Dev Monday who I think gives off the indie developer spirit and will inspire other people by sharing their story. Maybe they agree with me on my thinking but maybe they don’t. This sometimes feels like an evil question to ask but I feel like it’s an important one to ask. 👍 if you do feel like an indie dev. 👍 if you don’t feel like an indie dev. It doesn’t matter to me either way ☺️
You can be an indie developer if you want! The choice is yours.
🤔 I have, however, been thinking of either rewording this question or replacing this question. This question can provide some good answers from people but it can also feel like an awkward question. I would love to hear any ideas for replacing this question if you got one.
4️⃣ What got you started/interested in creating your own applications outside of your “normal” job?
This question slightly ties into the indie dev’s background from the previous question but I wanted to get a little more specific. I feel like this question is the segue from “here is my history” into the app-specific questions. The answer to this can show the drive, the motivation, and the personality behind the developer and why they applications that they did.
Not all of our indie developers have had extensive training in the software field. Some don’t even work on software for their day jobs. My hope of this question was to help inspire readers to not feel afraid to start their indie dev journey 😊
5️⃣ How do you balance your time between friends/family, work, hobbies, and indie dev?
Oh goodness, this question… This question is a doozy. A lot of the answers are just “I don’t” 😛 But I’m going to chalk that up to Indie Dev Monday starting during the height of the pandemic where the line between work life and personal life is 100% blurred.
This question might yield more “I don’t balance” in future issues but I think this one is worth keeping for some of those occasional gems!
That is all for today’s issue 😉 I felt like doing some writing and reflection this week so thank you all for reading it. I would love to hear any feedback on if you think these questions are good or should be removed. Or if you just have any other feedback on questions!
I have some good interviews planned for the rest of this year so stay tuned. Happy Monday, fam!
Thank you to everybody who made it to this footer! You either spent the time to read or took the effort to scroll 😊
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