Why Write

I will write about things that I think about, because that makes for more interesting reading and forces me to expose my logical leaps and stretches. Thus, I’m hoping I’ll learn during writing and from resulting discussions (online or live). Writing is hard for me, I have never deliberately practiced it. I think it’s time to do that, and I’ve thought that already for years.

That’s the key why I’m writing but there are other benefits and disadvantages that I’ll address next.

Benefits of writing publicly

I admire several people, who wrote online and have moved on to other things. Those people include Tim Ferriss, Marc Andreessen, Shane Parrish and Tim Urban. While the latter two still write, the publishing cycle is a lot less frequent than before. However, I still regularly revisit their writing and find it helpful. That’s my target. If I can write something that I can refer to later, that’s winning.

In the subsections below, I’ll break down the benefits of writing publicly that I’ve either experienced or believe are possible to achieve.


My background is in poker. One thing that catapulted me forward early in my poker career was writing in public. I made friends, found roommates, coaches, landlords, tenants, peers, role models, and anti-role models. Am I embarrassed by some of those texts? Yes! However, I prefer being a little embarrassed and have what I gained from writing.

I don’t expect similar serendipity this time around but if I get 1% of that, it’s worth it.

One reason to start writing again is that I really, really suck at keeping in touch with people. I rarely call or text. I don’t use social media. I haven’t organized events or gatherings since 2019 (London, COVID, etc.). I’ve tried to improve at all of those things, but it’s another area where I’m yet to find enlightenment. I hope writing publicly will be the first step.

Proof of work

Here’s an extract from a (not yet published) text, where I introduce the concept of Proof of Work:

According to Bitcoin Wikipedia, Proof of Work (PoW) is “a piece of data which is difficult (costly, time-consuming) to produce but easy for others to verify and which satisfies certain requirements”. PoW as a term originates from Bitcoin, it’s how Bitcoin governs block generation (more on this in the link above, if you want to go down this rabbit hole!). PoW is a term I learnt about in 2013. I remember the year, because I read about it when I was doing due diligence on Bitcoin.

I concluded three things in that due diligence process:

  1. I do not know how to value a currency
  2. Value of Bitcoin is speculative, as the legal use cases are limited1
  3. Bitcoin supply is scarce but supply of cryptocurrency is infinite

While analysing Bitcoin in 2013, I failed to realize that Proof of Work is applicable to much more than cryptocurrencies. For example, your resume is PoW, your degree is PoW, your physical condition is PoW, the cleanliness of your living space is PoW.

Well, writing publicly is also PoW. I believe writing in public will be helpful in at least the following scenarios:

  • Applying for a job
  • Buying a business
  • Founding a company
    • Raising capital
    • Hiring
  • Selling
  • Private investing

I think many of the above scenarios are likely to occur. All of these are competitive endeavors and I think writing in public is a competitive advantage.

Track, structure, and enhance my thinking

I believe the most powerful benefit of writing online is having reviewable material of my thinking. In my opinion, it’s too rare that people review their thinking and decisions. When I wrote about poker, I found it useful and motivating to go through my 3-month old thought process. Beneficial and embarassing to read my 6-month old thoughts. Reading texts from over twelve months ago was at best gringeworthy. I loved it!

I could see my priorities, preferences, and flaws. Sometimes, glimpses of ideas I had forgotten arose. Despite embarassment and gringing, the core feeling was sense of accomplishment and newfound motivation. These reviews motivated to keep improving, to have a chance to look back six months from now and feel the same sense of accomplishment. I often pulled myself out of a bad session2, bad stretch of sessions, or outright downswing3 by reading and reviewing, which translated to further learning.

Another upside of tracking my thought process as I progressed through the stakes, was the ability to understand what mistakes people on different levels were likely to make. I was able to remind myself how I thought about a situation when I was playing in a $10 buy-in game, I could remember how I thought my opposition thought about that situation too. This was invaluable when playing in various live games in the latter half of my poker career. Often, It was important to remind myself that despite the buy-in being hundreds of times higher, some of the competition was thinking on the $10 buy-in level.

I believe that writing online gives me these same opportunities now - only the domain has changed.

Opportunity to expose mistakes

Being honest online has the benefit of giving people an opportunity to disagree. I don’t have enough conversations, where I get convinced that my thinking is flawed. I want to give myself a chance to receive feedback from a wider audience. I plan to frequently write about topics I am exploring, structuring the idea, and honing my thinking. One of the things I’m constantly humbled and excited about, is the people around me, who consistently call out my bullshit and point to flaws in my thinking. I want to expand that group. The ones in the team already - thank you!

Help others

There’s a chance that some concept I write about is helpful for you. If I can help others by exposing my explorations, that would be great! This occurred surprisingly frequently when I wrote about poker - especially if I was reviewing interesting hands I had (mis)played4.


There are also downsides to writing in public. The most obvious example is comment sections. While they’re not mandatory, they are interesting. If you’ve read YouTube comments before 2017, or any comments in online tabloids, you know what I mean with the downsides! I think I have built myself a thick skin, so eager to put that to test. Creative accounting allows it to nearly vanish from the list of downsides.

Next, I will list a few other downsides to writing in public.


For me, publicity is the largest drawback. I prefer privacy over fame. I understand the value of status and fame, I think I understand the attraction of them, but I prefer privacy. This comes from the concept of inversion (deserves a standalone text!). Is there anyone mega-famous, with whom I would want to swap places? Is there anyone, who’s name is constantly in media, that I would like to be like? For me, I haven’t found anyone like that. Sure, there are parts of their lives that I would like to incorporate into my own. However, it’s impossible to cherry-pick the bits you like without getting some of the bits you don’t like. If you can’t think of a famous person who’s life you want to fully replicate - do you really want fame?

That said, writing online doesn’t produce fame (test: name more than five people who are famous because of writing online!). Given there are millions of people writing online, I think this is only a risk if I’m being delusional about the reach of my writing :)


Embarrassment is a risk. Assuming I write for a long period of time, the probability of embarrassment is approaching 100%5. I have written embarrassing things in the past, so I understand that risk. Understanding is one of my favorite risk mitigation strategies, as it allows me to categorize the risk by its impact and probability. The impact of embarrassment is only within me. No one else is likely to be embarrassed by my writing, it’ll be contained within myself. Thus, its impact is limited.


By being more open, I become more vulnerable. When that day comes that I’m vulnerable because of my writing, I hope I can live up to examples of others and stoic principles. I see this as a threat but also, as an opportunity. It will be an opportunity to practice philosophy. Someone wiser than me compared philosophy to martial arts: “Philosophy is like martial arts: you train to never use it”. If you never need to use it, was practicing it useless? Despite the training, were you any good?

Will I eventually write something I’ll deeply regret? Again, if I manage to write for a long period of time, the probability of this happening is approaching 100%. I’m not always right – in fact - I’m wrong way more often than I would like! I hope that writing will make me notice inconsistencies in my thinking allowing it to progress.


While it’s not only positives in the balance sheet, the positives outweigh the negatives. It may change in the future but now I’m excited for this. At minimum, I’ll improve at writing and have some fun conversations with friends, who tear apart my thought process - looking forward to it!

Thanks for reading! 💌 Subscribe now to get updates directly into your inbox.📫

  1. The legal use cases I saw were: speculation (aka “investing”), fast peer-to-peer transfers (faster than wiring money internationally), volatile store of value, traveling with large sums of money (cash is inconvenient and insecure - especially if you need lots of it). The last one was the only one I thought was valuable and unique to bitcoin, and it was the only one that was valuable for me. Traveling to play poker in Macau, Las Vegas, Amsterdam etc. with lots of cash is precarious - even dangerous. If someone finds a stack of cash, they’re likely to steal it. If someone finds a USB-drive, they probably don’t bother with it. USB-drive also fits into a lot smaller space than even 1000 USD! In addition to the legal use cases, I saw plenty of opportunity in illegal domains: smuggling, extortion, digital theft, pump-and-dump schemes, etc. ↩︎

  2. session in poker terms means the period of time you sit down to play without a longer break. If you break for long enough to lose the seat(s) in your table(s), those are then separate sessions. I used to play at minimum a session a day but typically more than one. A session lasted from minutes to hours for me, but others have had sessions last for days. ↩︎

  3. downswing means a bad stretch of cards and/or play resulting in continuous losses. Extended downswings tend to affect the player’s self-confidence and ability to think objectively. ↩︎

  4. in poker, hand histories are (at least, used to be) accumulated whenever you play hands. Online, every hand is logged into a database with all the information to reconstruct the hand and, with a little effort, the thought process behind each decision. When playing live poker, I wrote the details of interesting hands into a text file for later review and deeper analysis. I do similar analysis outside poker - the hand histories are manually maintained details of interesting situations I’ve faced. ↩︎

  5. I think cancel culture is on the decline, which also reduces the risk of losing my job, negatively impacting friends and family, and negativity in general. ↩︎