May 02, 2021

Everything takes longer than you expect

topics: build-in-public
Rosie Sherry
Life is wild. Exciting. And tough all in one.

I literally do not know how time is flying by. How is it we are already 1/3 through 2021? Everything has taken way longer than it was supposed to. Yet at the same time, I've done a lot. Hah.

In April I hit peak Rosie. Feeling like I was not doing well enough in any of things that I had signed myself up to and quite literally not having a spare moment. 

Yes, I'm super self critical, I'm aware and ok with it.

Where do I start?

Online things get messy pretty quickly


I have zero regrets starting a paid newsletter on Substack (it helped me build a writing habit that I feel I'll never lose now), but the process of moving off of it has been a total pain and has definitely slowed my growth. I've been in between having a Substack and a community for months. We paused payments on Substack in January (I think) and managed to move them over via Stripe. It's possible, but it was not fun.

I guess the hardest part is that we've been in this transition. Still using Substack to email stuff out. Still showing up to publish weekly, but no real financial growth because I had switched off payments.

However, progress has been made in other ways. And we are getting close to removing Substack all together.

We have:
  • a new custom forum set up (what you are reading on), it's still MVP-ish.
  • payments will now be handle via our new website
  • set up ConvertKit, now need to start using it
  • integrated via API, Slack and Twitter to Orbit

Our newsletter subscription didn't grow, but we did shift our attention to doing a course. We did a cohort based community course with the content also available at a lower cost via Notion.

I'll do a deeper write up on that later, but the TLDR:
  • It was a big step outside of my comfort zone
  • It forced me to make videos, simple ones, but something I had been avoiding for so long
  • I'm super happy to have connected with people
  • 6 weeks is cool, but long, the students felt it, we as the facilitators felt it too
  • There was a notable drop off after 3 weeks
  • We will continue offering asynch support and some meetups over the coming weeks
  • We sold $20k worth of courses

Much like I started a paid newsletter to force me to write, I started a course to force me to teach. I'm not sure if this is  the best way. But it seems to be the way that works for me.  I end up doing (what I feel is) imperfect work, but I also know that if I strive for perfection I'll never end up shipping.

It is what Rosie is. 🤷🏻‍♀️

Life is...unpredictable and sometimes?


This whole year has been...emotional, and testing. With a constant feeling of feeling stretched too thin.

Leaving Indie Hackers was a big emotional deal for me, one that I was trying to make decisions on for months. It was one of those things where I didn't really want to leave, but it felt like the right thing to do. And I know I should let it go, but I feel so sad that there isn't a visible woman standing up there to represent indie hackers. Yes, I know I will and am doing good work elsewhere, but I still feel sad about it.

My plan was to go indie full time, but then Orbit happened. Now I could have delayed by start date, but I went full steam ahead. This meant doing a 6 week cohort course whilst also starting a new job. 

I don't think I'll ever do that again. 🤣

On the positive side, I survived and feel stronger for it. I also feel like I have an even longer list of things to write about as a result of doing the course and conversing with the students. 

Also, just to add to this, I'm a carer for my mother. My sister came over recently from the US to help out, but then she had emergency health issues...which meant I had even more on my plate this month. 

Time to be a bit less intense


My focus now is to spend the next few weeks tidying up and doing some aysnch stuff for the Rosieland cohort course. We'll continue publishing weekly content as well. 

Then I also make some decisions about how to specifically progress with Rosieland. So many ideas and options that really need to be refined...or it's not even refining ideas, it's more just about making decisions.

I also will be having busy times are coming at Orbit, I love the future that I'm seeing there. 💜
—Rosie Sherry