- Internship to Offer
- The Dream of Writing
- Full-Time Writing?
- Shifting Continents
- Changing Career Goals
While the title is somewhat misleading as I never prioritized having a job, this article sheds some light on how I was extremely picky about choosing my first job.
Internship to Offer
I graduated in May this year and did a six-month internship. The startup offered a full-time offer, but I was reluctant to commit to 9-5. My vision didn’t match much with their vision, and working in a VC-funded startup seemed more of getting as many users as possible, resulting in tons of stress. So, I declined the offer as, at that time, I wanted to pursue higher studies and get an MBA degree.
The wave of freelancing and working remotely excited me to risk going as a freelancer. Earning in dollars was a competitive advantage due to the purchasing power parity. For the same work I was doing as an intern at X amount, I got contracts paying 4-6X that amount.
For the same set of skills.
So, I experimented and worked with a couple of clients.
Shameless plug: If you want to know more about the freelance journey, you can buy my book:
The Dream of Writing
To give a brief overview, Apple introduced the SwiftUI framework for developer apps on their platform. I wrote many articles related to it on my Medium. After reading one of my articles on Medium, a startup reached out to write for them in March. I love to write, and getting paid for it was an instant agreement. Again, the rate per article seemed great (again, due to the currency conversion), and I enjoyed writing about SwiftUI.
After being paid for the first article, I realized that this could be a career option! I went on a search to find more startups to write for. I stumbled upon a CI/CD service and saw that they were looking for native iOS technical writers in one of their posts.
Hey, that’s me!
I sent a quick introductory mail to them with my idea and outline for a topic related to SwiftUI. And they agreed!
And that was the beginning of my technical writing journey! I was simultaneously freelancing on iOS projects and then pursuing my passion for writing.
Another shameless plug: I’m writing a book on my technical writing journey as well! You should subscribe to my newsletter for updates related to it.
After reading my first paid article on Twitter, a person I knew approached me if I was interested in writing for them. I was interested because the topic came to me instead of searching for contracts myself. The rate was much more than the one I wrote the first two for, and then I got to know more about this industry and the industry rate.
After finishing the article, they offered to join them full-time as a Native iOS technical writer! My dream job! I said yes instantly, but there was this caveat, I couldn’t do freelancing anymore, and the compensation was based on national average. After earning in dollars, the lifestyle inflation I was comfortable with wasn’t feasible anymore.
After long consideration, I declined the offer as I wasn’t sure if it was worth taking a pay cut. Maybe I can get a role that offers compensation without considering the region.
I implemented a feature to search songs on Apple Music in one of the client’s apps. The existing framework was a pain, and I didn’t particularly appreciate working with it.
And then, in WWDC 2020, Apple released MusicKit, a framework written from the ground up for Swift and SwiftUI. I appreciated every detail and improvement the team made, so I started binge-writing about it on this blog. An engineer asked me on Twitter if I wanted to interview for a software engineer role at MusicKit, and it felt like I was daydreaming. But, a different caveat this time. It wasn’t a remote role, and I had to LeetCode to prepare for the interviews.
Oh, the dreaded LeetCode preparation.
I wasn’t ready to invest my time into solving LC hard day in day out, nor in a mindset to shift countries. So, I politely declined the offer. I love MusicKit and will continue to write more about it in 2022, but the comfort of working remotely is everything for me.
Changing Career Goals
I had one bad incident in freelancing iOS projects, and I quit it altogether. Instead, I focused my energy on being a freelance technical writer. A few articles a fortnight kept me content.
Around the end of October, I got an offer to interview for a Developer Relations Engineer role. I knew DevRel(s) wrote articles, documentation, all the cool stuff I wanted to do, and roam around the world while speaking at conferences. I never explored more about this role because the last time I did, it was about Google’s DevRel Engineers and how their engineering interviews were similar to SWE, which meant extreme hard work of months to prepare for the interview.
I had written for them in the past and loved the work. The role was remote, so I interviewed for it. After the first round, I learned that the compensation was decent; I admired the vision and culture.
I knew I wanted this job, so I kept my nose to the grindstone for those two weeks of completing the interview assignment. It was strenuous while finishing two other writing contracts, but after a few serious nights, everything worked out well.
And I accepted the full-time offer. No caveats or anything this time. :)
Thank you for reading this post! 2021 was a wild year, and I’m glad I took the road of freelancing that is less traveled by. In the end, it made all the difference.