49
125 Comments

Gave up 300K/yr as a blockchain dev to make a pomodoro timer ๐Ÿค” AMA!

Hey everyone, I'm Maxime ๐Ÿ˜Š

I'm a full-stack dev with about 15 years of experience. I went from 0 blockchain knowledge to making $155 an hour in 3 months as a blockchain solidity dev.

I've since decided that I'd rather live life on my own terms, be an indie app maker and scratch my own itch ๐Ÿคฉ Life is just too short to do shit you don't want to do ๐Ÿ˜Œ That's obviously a privileged position to be in and I'm very grateful for it.

I'm currently working on โ˜ ๏ธ Microbreak Boss โ˜ ๏ธ, a pretty unique macOS break timer ๐Ÿ˜Ž I started this project to learn Swift and I will likely branch off to other apps in the future, but right now, I'm having a blast trying to find my first 100 customers ๐Ÿ™Œ

Feel free to ask me absolutely anything - about blockchain freelancing, indie app making, programming, my thought process... ๐Ÿ™ƒ

And follow me on Twitter as I build in public ๐Ÿš€

  1. 10

    Hey Maxime, what's your plan for acquiring your first 10 paying users?

    1. 4

      Hey Dago ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ’œ Thanks for reminding me to break down my goals into smaller ones ๐Ÿ˜†

      I currently have about 15 - 20 customers (I'd need to make the full count lol). So, let's say, for the next 10 users, I have devised a marketing and cold selling plan. Mostly, I plan on using the powerful search engines that Twitter and Reddit offer to make some cold 1-on-1 sales.

      Here's my full plan

      So far I had medium success (got some sales, but nothing too crazy). I'll keep putting in some work in and adapting my plan, maybe I can just pull it off with slow organic growth ๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜Š

      Also, doing cold sales seems to have boosted my ASO (SEO for the app store) by quite a lot, so maybe I'll start getting more sales from the distribution and exposure of the app store ๐Ÿ‘Œ

      1. 2

        Cool for posting your plan overview!

        Curious what those cold DM msgs looked like?

        It's something I think would fit well for my SaaS as well.

        Do you just go for a "1-shot 1-kill" type of DM, "check it out", or more conversational?

        1. 2

          Right now I'm going for replies instead of DMs. My thought process is that everyone can see the replies, so I might reach more interested people ๐Ÿค”

          Here's my cold selling text, pretty basic ๐Ÿ˜„

          I created this cool break/focus/pomodoro timer for macOS if you're interested ๐Ÿ˜‡

          Microbreak Boss: Stay productive with a cool BOSS on your menu bar. Fully customizable.

          My favourite feature: see how many other users are working while you are ๐Ÿ˜Š

          https://microbreakboss.com

      2. 2

        great plan for this stage. Doesn't need to be more complex I feel. Best of luck ๐Ÿ’ช

        1. 2

          Yep, just some good ol' cold selling, hard work and patience ๐Ÿ˜ Highly inspired by The Minimalist Entrepreneur ๐Ÿ™Œ

          Thanks Dago, I appreciate it ๐Ÿ™

  2. 7

    Hi Maxime,
    When you decided to become an indie app developer, did you gave up your job and became self-employed? How did you manage the financial responsibilities (rent, food, ...)? And what about the emotions in such a situation (uncertainty about future)? And again another question :D You decided to make your "learn project" to a real product. At which point did you recognize that you can sell your product? I am asking this because I am a backend developer, learning frontend right now and also will probably learn it by doing some side projects. And I thought about maybe also building something useful for others, too.
    Have a great day!

    1. 9

      Hey, thank you so much for chiming in! ๐Ÿ’œ

      When you decided to become an indie app developer, did you gave up your job and became self-employed? How did you manage the financial responsibilities (rent, food, ...)?

      I did give it up. I am doing freelance to pay the bills, but I make sure that I work as least as I can to dedicate most of my time making apps ๐Ÿ˜Š My financial plan is what I call a Job MED. More on that here if you're interested: https://newsletter.maximedupre.com/issues/why-i-decided-that-being-an-indie-app-maker-having-a-300k-job-913972

      And what about the emotions in such a situation (uncertainty about future)?

      This will sound weird, but I've come to enjoy those emotions (or at least embrace them). I've come to realize that uncertainty brings pure excitement, and at this point of my life, I'm choosing excitement over comfort and security 10/10 times. Furthermore, those challenging emotions bring up the best in me and they force me to grow ๐Ÿ™

      And again another question :D You decided to make your "learn project" to a real product. At which point did you recognize that you can sell your product? I am asking this because I am a backend developer, learning frontend right now and also will probably learn it by doing some side projects. And I thought about maybe also building something useful for others, too.

      I love this ๐Ÿ˜Š I just scratch my own itch. I believe that if I build something that I love using, chances are that others will love using it too. Just find a problem in your life that really annoys you and that you are passionate about solving and do it! Then share your solution with the rest of the world. People will likely buy it and if not, no problem, you had a blast doing it and you are solving a real problem in your life.

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ™

      1. 4

        Hi Maxime,
        You can't imagine what rollercoaster of emotions you triggered in me right now. Giving up such a high salary job to do what you love, decreasing the amount of time of work to pay more attention to your beloved projects, enjoying the funny side of uncertainty, just love what you do and strive for the things you love... I could read all of these things out of your reply and this opened my eyes a lot.

        I am working on an indie hacking project with my husband together and besides that in my working/professional time (I am a part time backend software developer) I was going to make a decision not because I loved and wanted it - but I wanted the certainty it would give me. But on the other hand it would reduce my time for the side project, for learning new skills, for enjoying what I love or simply reducing my quality time in my life so to say. I had a bad gut feeling when I was thinking about realizing that decision - but I didn't listen to it until now.

        But while I was reading your message my mom was sitting besides me and realized that something was wrong. My mood changed rapidly. She talked with me and I literally started to cry like a baby. I talked with her about that I have the feeling to go into the wrong direction, just because of prioritizing certainty over my real goals. After that I talked with my husband and realized that "the decision" was going to destroy what I love just because I wanted that certainty. I always wanted to become a freelancer and just work that much that I can pay my bills and have time for our indie project. But with that decision I was going to destroy it and loose both my focus time on becoming a freelancer and having time for my beloved indie project.

        Everything is clearer now for me. Everything feels more simple now. I know now what I want to do and also what I should definitely NOT do.

        You asked "I hope this helps ". You don't know HOW MUCH you helped me. Thank you a lot! Thousand x thousand x thousand times thanks!

        Have a wonderful day ๐Ÿ˜‡

        1. 4

          I don't know you but I feel super happy for you! I've just witness an important (and positive!) event is someone's life and that's fantastic!

          GO GO GO! ๐Ÿ”ฅ

          Maxime, you did some magic today ๐Ÿช„

          1. 4

            Thank you very much! I feel pumped and am not afraid of my future anymore ๐Ÿ”ฅ

            Thank y'all. What a great day ๐Ÿ˜€

        2. 4

          My intention was to inspire and provide value with this AMA, but never in my wildest dreams I would have hoped to make such an impact ๐Ÿฅฐ I'm so glad I made this post!

          The story you just shared is very personal and I'm so grateful that you have the courage to share it - it can also help others ๐Ÿ™

          We're all in this together and I'm glad I was able to inspire you to pursue the life you want ๐Ÿ’œ

  3. 6

    Hey Maxime ๐Ÿ‘‹
    Where did you learn blockchain dev?

    1. 6

      Hey Zahil ๐Ÿ˜Š

      I first went through this course on Udemy: https://www.udemy.com/course/ethereum-and-solidity-the-complete-developers-guide

      But really I learned much more by working on some random projects than I did by watching any course.

      1. 4

        Nice, thanks for the link!!

        Yeah nothing more effective to learn than side projects ๐Ÿ˜„

        1. 6

          Absolutely ๐Ÿ˜ I like to follow something like this:

          1. Take a very basic course just to get an overview. The more basic the better.
          2. Find something that you are excited to build (it doesn't even need to be valuable to others - the goal is learning)
          3. Start building it and learn just enough so that you can make progress. Every time you get stuck โ†’ time for another learning session

          ๐Ÿ˜Ž

          1. 3

            Same approach here

            1. 3

              Seems like everyone is having the same plan ๐Ÿ˜† I think it works well because it focuses on execution/action over learning.

              Execute as much as you can. Learn when you need. At least in the beginning if you want to move at a decent speed ๐Ÿ‘Œ

          2. 3

            I do exactly the same! It's been a long time since I've learned a new tech though ๐Ÿ˜ญ

            1. 3

              I get it. I like to do ideas over tech. I only work on ideas that I am very excited about ๐Ÿ˜Š

              The idea necessitates me to learn a new tech? Awesome ๐Ÿ˜Ž

              The idea necessitates me to use JS/Node that I have used for 15 years? Great ๐Ÿ˜†

      2. 2

        Nice! I think I took this course a few years ago and it was great (as are all of Stephen's courses). I'm curious if you are still using the web3 tech stack Stephen used in your blockchain dev job. Aren't the popular tools these days hardhat/ethers.js rather than Ganache/web3.js?

        1. 2

          Hey Bilal! Not doing much web3 these days ๐Ÿ˜„

          It's true that by the end of my blockchain freelancing I was gearing more towards ethers.js. The Ganache suite is still great though ๐Ÿ˜Š

          Stephen's course was tremendous! I'm sure his others are great as well.

          1. 2

            Nice! Yeah his React courses are really great for new devs as well!

            1. 2

              Great, I have something to recommend to new React devs now :D

  4. 4

    Hi Maxime! I am curious: how come you didn't build a blockchain app given your experience with it and the popularity of web3 right now?

    1. 2

      Hi Alex ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿ˜Š

      Great question.

      I'm more interested in ideas than technologies. I only work on ideas that I am very excited about ๐Ÿ˜Š

      So:

      If the idea necessitates me to learn or use a new tech? Awesome ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      If the idea necessitates me to use JS, a programming language that I have used for 15 years? Great ๐Ÿ˜†

      While I love the blockchain space, I don't have any itch I'd like to scratch that's blockchain-related. It's the itch that keeps me going every day, not the tech ๐Ÿ˜Ž I'm definitely open to the idea of building more smart contracts in the future (if an itch appears ๐Ÿ˜).

  5. 4

    Hey Dude ๐Ÿ‘‹

    What was the deciding factor to get up and leave? Stress, boredom, frustration or all? I would love to know.

    1. 9

      Hey Joe ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      The realization that โ€œEvery man has two lives, and the second starts when he realizes he has just oneโ€ โ€” Confucius

      drops the mic

      1. 3

        Fuck, that both amused me and hit me hard๐Ÿ˜

        1. 3

          That's what I'm here for ๐Ÿ˜†

          But seriously, I just felt like there was more to life than working a 9-5. I can't experience what life has to offer if I'm constantly time-bound ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

  6. 3

    Nice interview. I thought now people are going from mobile dev to block chain dev, and you're doing opposite?

    1. 2

      Haha exactly ๐Ÿ˜…

      But I'm not thinking in terms of which tech to use - I just work on ideas I'm excited about. Whatever tech is needed to make my ideas come alive is the tech I'll be using ๐Ÿ˜Š

      Who knows, I might be back to doing Solidity in the future ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  7. 3

    How has the transition been so far? What would you tell others in a similar position before they go all in?

    1. 3

      Hey Matt, thanks for the question ๐Ÿ˜Š

      The transition has been nothing short of life-changing. If you want to stop deferring happiness and excitement in the future and stomach the tradeoff of less money security and a little bit more stress, I highly recommend it ๐Ÿ™

      If someone else wants to go all in, this is what I'd say:

      1. Make sure you understand the sacrifices you'll be making and make sure you fully accept them in advance. Accept the worst outcome before even into this adventure.
      2. Make sure you reduce your expenses beforehand and have a job MED if you have no savings or runway. More on job MED here: https://newsletter.maximedupre.com/issues/why-i-decided-that-being-an-indie-app-maker-having-a-300k-job-913972

      Great question Matt, thanks a lot ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  8. 3

    You are a brave man! I'm following you on Twitter :D

    1. 1

      Hey Stan, thank you sir ๐Ÿ˜† I might just be crazy ๐Ÿ˜…

      1. 2

        Fortune favours the bold! GL fren!

        1. 2

          I think we got the same fortune cookie ๐Ÿ˜‚ Thanks man. GL HF ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  9. 2

    Very interesting! I'm also a full-stack dev (almost 15 years) and moved into web3, cryptocurrency trading and investing and have been building my own application (https://moonfactor.com).

    The idea of a Job MED (Minimum Effective Dose) is so incredibly important. I lowered my living costs so I could reduce hours to part-time (10 hours/wk). If I hadn't done that I wouldn't have made a fraction of the progress I have made. Learning to live like this has also cemented the idea that I never want a full-time job again... I'd happily make the sacrifice for what is priceless personal time.

    Would you recommend blockchain dev contracting over web? I'm sure I could get a higher rate in blockchain. What kinds of blockchain projects did you work on? I just want to avoid getting involved with scammy projects, building utility into meme coins that kind of thing.

    Anyway, congrats on the progress! I hope one day I can go full time on my own software. It's been a long time coming!

    1. 2

      Hey Damien ๐Ÿ‘‹

      The idea of a Job MED (Minimum Effective Dose) is so incredibly important. I lowered my living costs so I could reduce hours to part-time (10 hours/wk). If I hadn't done that I wouldn't have made a fraction of the progress I have made. Learning to live like this has also cemented the idea that I never want a full-time job again... I'd happily make the sacrifice for what is priceless personal time.

      ๐Ÿ’ฏ That's exactly how I feel. Couldn't have said it better!

      Would you recommend blockchain dev contracting over web? I'm sure I could get a higher rate in blockchain. What kinds of blockchain projects did you work on? I just want to avoid getting involved with scammy projects, building utility into meme coins that kind of thing.

      To answer the first part of your question, I'll quote my blog post

      "3. Optimize for mental energy
      I could keep freelancing as a blockchain dev and make $155 per hour. But I wonโ€™t. Why? It might seem like Iโ€™m contradicting myself because Iโ€™d be working less if I did. See, Iโ€™ve been a web developer for more than a decade before I even knew what blockchain was. Web development is easy for me. I donโ€™t need to have massive bouts of learning. It takes no effort. I donโ€™t have to worry about my performance. I already have all the clients I need. I can get in, do my job and do it well so that I can get out and focus on my business without expending too much mental energy."

      If you feel like you wouldn't be expending too much mental energy doing blockchain freelancing, definitely do it for the higher rate ๐Ÿ‘Œ

      I usually worked on ERC-20 tokens of all sort, but mostly reflection-based tokens.

      I hope I could help a bit Damien โ˜บ๏ธ Thanks for chiming in!

      1. 2

        Thanks very much for the feedback! :) I'll have another read of the blog post.

      2. 2

        PS: MoonFactor looks pretty cool ๐Ÿ˜‹

  10. 2

    The same for me here! I am still freelancing while working on some personal projects. The struggle for me is to find the right project, I didn't want to work on "small" projects, but I am looking for something that could really grow... I don't know if my strategy is right :D

    1. 2

      Hey ๐Ÿ˜‡

      My strategy is only to scratch my own itch and share the solution publicly. This maximizes for enjoyment, excitement and lifestyle.

      Being passionate about what I'm working on is what gets me up in the morning and makes me stay consistent.

      Hope this helps ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      1. 2

        yes I think you are right, working on cool projects it's not heavy, and it's something that gives you the energy to proceed!

        1. 1

          Definitely. And at the end of the day, the real reason we're doing anything is to be happy. Might as well jump straight to the happiness part ๐Ÿ˜Ž

          Cheers man!

    2. 2

      I think it's a balance. You don't want to waste too much time on something that isn't viable, and yet you'll build the most value over the long-term.

      Maybe compromise on a medium-term cut off? For example, you go all in on an idea for 3 months and then decide if it's proven viable enough to continue, or move onto another idea.

      One of the difficulties I had is sunk cost fallacy. Once you've committed to something over the long-term it can be very hard to walk away even if you know it's the right thing to do.

      1. 2

        Thank you for the answer! Yes at the moment I am working on projects for 3 months then try to understand if this could get some traction. With 2 friends we shut down a SaaS business (chatbot for conversational commerce) because we didn't reach enough customers in the first 3 months, and then we understood that our customers needed something more similar to an agency than a SaaS. Now I am studying in Web3 as a Solana developer and I am working on another project that I like more, I started 2 weeks ago and try to go live in the next 2 weeks with the MVP. We want to understand if we can have some traction, and find a business that can grow!

      2. 2

        Maybe compromise on a medium-term cut off? For example, you go all in on an idea for 3 months and then decide if it's proven viable enough to continue, or move onto another idea.

        Great suggestion Damien ๐Ÿ’ช

        One of the difficulties I had is sunk cost fallacy. Once you've committed to something over the long-term it can be very hard to walk away even if you know it's the right thing to do.

        Yep, god knows I've been guilty of that in the past ๐Ÿ˜…

        But really though, my litmus test is always โ†’ am I passionate about what I'm working on? I like maximizing for enjoyment instead of money ๐Ÿ˜Š

  11. 2

    Awesome Maxime! Thatโ€™s crazy brave! What made you quit and not build on the side? Not a great work life balance at the job?

    1. 1

      Hey Timothy ๐Ÿ˜Ž Thanks for the question ๐Ÿ˜Š

      What made you quit and not build on the side? Not a great work life balance at the job?

      I'm more of a "burn the boats" kinda guy ๐Ÿ˜… I don't even think it's the smartest move, but that's just how my brain works ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

      It's very hard for me to work at a job when every cell in body wants me to do something else. It's infernal ๐Ÿ˜„

      Check out this blog post if you're interested in a more in-depth answer ๐Ÿ˜Š

      https://newsletter.maximedupre.com/issues/why-i-decided-that-being-an-indie-app-maker-having-a-300k-job-913972

  12. 2

    What are your thoughts on building a portfolio before freelancing? Do you think having some projects to reference is a requirement to getting a first initial paying contract?

    1. 1

      Hey mrdodo ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿ˜Š!

      Definitely.

      That being said, it doesn't need to be much. I like to build dummy projects while I'm learning something just to have proof of skills. You just want to reassure the person that will be reviewing your proposal.

      As long as you're confident in your abilities and show up as such in an interview, having some small projects to illustrate your capabilities is more than enough in my experience.

      Keep in mind that is just needed for your first contract, as by the second contract you should have at least 1 solid item in your portfolio ๐Ÿ˜‰

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ˜Š

  13. 2

    Did the general sketchiness and financial insanity of blockchain space contribute to your decision?

    1. 1

      It definitely did. But honestly, if I had an itch to scratch that would necessitate the use of this tech, I'd definitely do it. Although I find the tech completely revolutionary and disruptive (in the good sense), I don't have much interest in building something with it.

  14. 2

    Question #1: How did you get to $155/hour as blockchain solidty dev with zero blockchain experieince in 3 months? (Question 1a: What was you full stack knowledge before month 0 blockchain learning?)

    Question #2: Were you freelancing or fulltime employee? If freelance, could you have done both at the same time?

    Question 3: As someone very near burning out of the "unlimited" runway i thought I had and no closer to making $$ on my side project, and being a developer with 10 years experieince, would you recommend learning blockchain dev to do the type of job you did to replinish my runway?

    1. 1

      Hi Craig ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿ˜Š

      Question #1: How did you get to $155/hour as blockchain solidty dev with zero blockchain experieince in 3 months? (Question 1a: What was you full stack knowledge before month 0 blockchain learning?)

      I just learned about it and got my first contract on Upwork ๐Ÿ™ƒ The rest was crazy word to mouth. Blockchain dev are HIGHLY in demand. This might help answer your question ๐Ÿ‘Œ

      Question #2: Were you freelancing or fulltime employee? If freelance, could you have done both at the same time?

      Freelance! I could have done both at the same time. I just don't want to waste time or mental energy on something other than what I want to do ๐Ÿ˜‡ Check this out if you'd like more info on my thought process

      Question 3: As someone very near burning out of the "unlimited" runway i thought I had and no closer to making $$ on my side project, and being a developer with 10 years experieince, would you recommend learning blockchain dev to do the type of job you did to replinish my runway?

      That's definitely the right option if you want to maximize the amount of money you make and don't mind because compensated en exchange of your time ๐Ÿ‘Œ

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ˜Š Don't hesitate if you have more questions ๐Ÿ’ช

  15. 2

    where and how do you find blockchain dev contracts?

    1. 1

      Hey Damien ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿ˜Š

      Check this out

      Don't hesitate if you have some more questions ๐Ÿ˜‡

  16. 2

    Hi Maxime !

    Read your post and idea comes to me - make a Blockchain pomodoro timer.
    With smart contracts for deadlines between chain users. With photo validation.
    How about implementation?

    Also, I made my own free Pomodoro timer for windows. Maybe it helps somebody.
    https://taskboard.pro/timer/

    1. 1

      Hey ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿ˜Š

      Read your post and idea comes to me - make a Blockchain pomodoro timer.
      With smart contracts for deadlines between chain users. With photo validation.
      How about implementation?

      I like crazy ideas like that ๐Ÿ˜† I'm not sure my users would prioritize this feature, so I'll let you take a stab at it hahaha

      Also, I made my own free Pomodoro timer for windows. Maybe it helps somebody.
      https://taskboard.pro/timer/

      Look cool ๐Ÿ‘Œ I wish I understood Russian ๐Ÿ˜…

      Cheers ๐Ÿ”ฅ

  17. 2

    Hi, could you please guide about how to freelance in blockchain development, client sources, etc.

    1. 1

      Hey Piyush ๐Ÿ‘‹

      Sure! This should be helpful:

      I first went through this course on Udemy. Then I started creating dummy projects, just for the purpose of learning.

      Then I started looking for contracts online. Here's the process I used to gain clients on Upwork.

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ˜Š Don't hesitate if you have more questions ๐Ÿ’ช

  18. 2

    I went from 0 blockchain knowledge to making $155 an hour in 3 months as a blockchain solidity dev.

    Can you tell me more about this? How did you get started in solidity and how did you found work?

    1. 1

      Hi Abhi ๐Ÿ‘‹

      Of course!

      I first went through this course on Udemy. Then I started creating dummy projects, just for the purpose of learning.

      Then I started looking for contracts online. Here's the process I used to gain clients on Upwork.

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ˜Š Don't hesitate if you have more questions ๐Ÿ’ช

      1. 2

        Thanks so much answering all the question, loved your kindness

        1. 1

          Anytime Abhi ๐Ÿ˜Š Don't hesitate to send me a DM on Twitter if you need more help or advice ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ’œ

  19. 2

    i like superhero costume very much.

    1. 1

      Hi Eshika ๐Ÿ‘‹ I'm not sure I understand what you mean ๐Ÿ˜… Can you elaborate?

      Thanks ๐Ÿ™

  20. 2

    Hi Maxime, how did you get the blockchain job? Direct apply? From a friend? Is there a lot of demand for an experienced dev who is new to blockchain?

    1. 1

      Hey Martin ๐Ÿ‘‹

      I got the first contract on Upwork, of all places ๐Ÿ˜† Then there was a lot of word to mouth and got referred most of the time (the clients came to me instead).

      Here's a process I used on Upwork to gain clients

      There is huge demand for blockchain devs. It doesn't really matter if you have previous experience or not, so long as you understand Solidity pretty well ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      I hope this helps ๐Ÿ™

  21. 2

    Hi Maxime,

    Good on you for following your dreams!

    Just wondering how long did it take you to build your app to MVP stage?

    1. 1

      Thanks ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Ž

      Hmm, I'd say no more than a month or two. I don't really remember the exact duration TBH, as I was also in the middle of learning Swift. Sometimes I could watch a course for a couple of days, so that also delayed the MVP progress. I hope this help ๐Ÿ˜Œ

  22. 2

    Thinking about moving the opposite direction, I would ask for advice - how and where to search for clients, how to market crypto dev. services? And good luck with your new venture!

    1. 2

      Of course Sergey ๐Ÿ˜Š Once you've learned how to do some Solidity, I recommend you

      1. Go on Upwork and apply to jobs until you have no more credits.
      2. Save a search query on your dashboard for blockchain jobs
      3. Every day buy some 1$ credits to apply to some new jobs

      It literally only takes 1 person to hire you to make it all worth it at > 125$/hr. I usually found a client in less than a week using this process. I hope this helps ๐Ÿš€

      1. 2

        Thanks Maxime!

        1. 1

          Anytime Martin ๐Ÿ™ Feel free to DM me on Twitter if you have some more questions ๐Ÿ’ช

      2. 2

        Thank you very much Maxime! ๐Ÿค

        1. 2

          You got it Sergey ๐Ÿ˜Ž Reach out with a DM on Twitter if you ever need more advice ๐Ÿ™

      3. 1

        so your strategy was to keep applying?

        After How many proposal you got your first gig?

        I tried a few and got demotivated so i stopped applying

        Also can you share your first successful gig proposal template? Would be very helpful for me

        1. 2

          so your strategy was to keep applying?

          Yep, Upwork is a numbers game.

          After How many proposal you got your first gig?

          I don't know, I sent hundreds lol

          I tried a few and got demotivated so i stopped applying

          The only rule: Do. Not. Stop.

          Also can you share your first successful gig proposal template? Would be very helpful for me

          This was my proposal template ๐Ÿ˜…

          My apologies for submitting my proposal without a formal cover letter. I was excited about your job offer and decided to make a hasty proposal :-).
          
          I am the perfect match for your job skill-wise and am, of course, willing to discuss via a video call as needed.
          
          Attached is my resume; hopefully, it will answer some questions you might have.
          
          Cheers!
          

          Enjoy ๐Ÿš€

  23. 2

    Thanks a lot for doing this post. I've been intending on telling my manager today that I don't want my contract extended next month, so that I can freelance/ work on my business full time and this post just confirmed I am indeed on the right track.

    1. 1

      Hey Janinah ๐Ÿ‘‹ That's awesome news ๐Ÿ˜Ž It will get hard (it always does) and you will start to doubt and question your decision. In those moments, remember why you are doing it - to live life on your own terms ๐Ÿ˜Œ

      Cheers!

      1. 2

        Thanks very much for that! I'll try to keep that in mind going forwards. And again thank you for sharing your journey with us

        1. 1

          Anytime Janinah ๐Ÿ™ If you have more questions or need help in the future don't hesitate to DM on Twitter ๐Ÿ˜Š

          1. 2

            Cheers Maxime. Much appreciated ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿพ

  24. 2

    Hey Maxime!

    What's the most unexpectedly helpful thing you've discovered with marketing your app so far?

    What's been harder than you expected?

    1. 2

      Hey Nathan ๐Ÿ˜‡

      I've been surprised by how much my ASO (SEO for the app store, for those who don't know) has been boosted by doing cold selling ๐Ÿ˜ฎ In some cases I've jumped from position 50 to position 15 for a specific keyword ๐Ÿคฏ

      I don't think anything has been harder than I expected, because my expectations were already that would be extremely hard ๐Ÿ˜† I like managing my expectations that way, I can only be positively surprised when I have some small amount of success ๐Ÿ˜Š

      PS: Twitter and Reddit search engine is a game-changer to target your potential customers for cold selling ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      1. 2

        @maximedupre - Really looking forward to trying out Twitter searches for targeting potential customers :). I'll let you know how it goes!

  25. 2

    Hi Maxime!

    What's been your cheapest (and most expensive!) lesson going from full-time job -> Indiehacker?

    1. 2

      Hi Sophia ๐Ÿ‘‹

      Thanks for the question ๐Ÿ˜Š

      I assume that by asking me about my "cheapest lesson", you are referring to the most valuable lesson I got from my journey that caused the least emotional/financial/personal turbulence (and then the opposite with the most expensive lesson)

      I'd say the cheapest lesson I got was that listening to my gut instinct is always the right decision. I had doubts and fears, and although indie making is not the easiest path, I have not regretted it one second. Life is short and I got no time to waste ๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ™ It was the cheapest lesson, because it was really more like a confirmation. I was at a point where I already felt good about taking the leap and accepted all possible outcomes.

      My most expensive lesson is literally my most expensive lesson ๐Ÿ˜† Going from a pretty good salary to just a fraction of what I was making before is uncomfortable. But hopefully, I can turn things around in the future and live on my own terms ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      I hope this answers it Sophia ๐Ÿ˜Š

      1. 3

        haha that's exactly what I was asking!

        Definitely, life is short and better to live with "I did it" then "I wonder what would have happened..."

        What's your best time-saving tool, tip, or trick?

        1. 1

          Great ๐Ÿ˜†

          Definitely, life is short and better to live with "I did it" then "I wonder what would have happened..."

          ๐Ÿ’ฏ

          What's your best time-saving tool, tip, or trick?

          Just general principles I like to live my life by:

          1. Self-discipline. Following the plan/schedule/commitments regardless of how I feel.
          2. Prioritization. Always do things in order of importance. Micro-level (todo x is more important than todo y, therefore I will do x first) and macro-level (nothing is more important than health, therefore, the first few hours after waking up are dedicated to my health - workout out, taking a walk, cold shower, etc)

          ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ™

          1. 2

            Nice!

            haha needed that order of important reminder right about now... Thanks Maxime. ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ™‚

            1. 1

              No problem Sophia, I'm glad I could help. I reminded myself at the same time haha ๐Ÿ™

  26. 2

    Hi Maxime, I'm an Indie mobile dev for the past 10 years, would love to Zoom with ya over some coffee mate :-)

    1. 2

      Hey Mike! I'm really impressed, thanks for the inspiration ๐Ÿ‘Œ Your ASO course also looks tremendous, I might take a shot at it in the near future ๐Ÿ”ฅ

      Would love to zoom with ya, DM me on Twitter :)

      1. 2

        Thanks mate, I appreciate it, I will message you :-)

        1. 1

          ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿš€๐Ÿ”ฅ

  27. 2

    Hey Maxime!

    As a dev who spent way too much time coding and not enough marketing, I wanted to ask you: is it an issue to you? (if not, I admire you and hate you at the same time; no offense ๐Ÿ˜†) How do you manage this dual role? Any advice?

    1. 2

      Hey Philippe ๐Ÿ˜Š

      I was really scared of marketing before starting my indie journey and building in public ๐Ÿ˜… But now it's really become a source of joy to be active on Twitter (if you can consider that marketing). It's true that I enjoy a little bit less cold DMs and posting on subreddits, but it's still not that bad (I hope you don't hate me too much ๐Ÿ˜†).

      My ideal ratio would be to do 75% building and 25% marketing, but truthfully I'm kind of addicted to Twitter now ๐Ÿ˜… I need to work on that - we should always focus on building IMO.

      So if anything, I'm having the opposite issue right now ๐Ÿง

      I hope this answers your question ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ’œ

      1. 2

        It does! Thank you.

        And yes, I definitely consider Twitter as marketing. I share your view about cold DMs, too ๐Ÿ˜”

        1. 2

          Gotta do what you gotta do ๐Ÿ˜†

          But I find that if I apply myself and try to do my very best, I can almost enjoy anything by gamifying the process.

  28. 2

    That outlook sounds very close to what i have plans for in the future. Love it!

    Did you set a deadline or goal you are aiming for? Or just plan to have at it until a better option pops up?

    1. 1

      Thank Emin ๐Ÿ™ƒ Glad to be on this journey with you ๐Ÿ”ฅ

      Did you set a deadline or goal you are aiming for?

      I have a 1K MR goal for 2022. I'm not sure if that counts as a deadline. I'm not really thinking too hard about it. I just love doing it and that's the most important to me. Once I stop enjoying working on Microbreak Boss or talking about it, then it will be time for me to move on.

      Also, there might be a point soon in the future where I have no more features to add - let's not forget this is just a break timer ๐Ÿ˜„ When I feel like it is the best timer on the app store and does its specific job very well, then I might be inclined to start a new project ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      Time will tell ๐Ÿ˜

  29. 2

    Having built both web3 and now a "web2" product, do you think blockchain is the future? Do you think this new wave of web3 apps is going to eventually change the world and obviate many of the web2 apps that exist today>

    1. 1

      Hey Courtland, thanks for the question ๐Ÿ˜Š

      I do think web3 will change (is changing) the world. I'm not so sure if it will obviate many of our beloved web2 apps.

      What might happen is that web2 apps will start including more and more web3 primitives (NFTs on Twitter sounds cool ๐Ÿ˜Ž) - a merge of some sort. I see web2 as an extension of web1 and web3 as an extension of web2. I don't think that's a perfect comparison, but I think it gets my point across that I don't think web2 and web3 are competing against each other.

      But who knows. Maybe DESO will replace Twitter, Facebook & Reddit, for example ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

      Web3 is clearly disrupting finance, art and gaming (amongst other things). None of these have a clear association to web2 in my head ๐Ÿค”

      I hope this rant made sense ๐Ÿ˜‚ As you know very well, this is a complicated and nuanced subject ๐Ÿ˜ถ

      Cheers!

      1. 2

        I agree with you in the short-to-mid term. It will be server + web browser + blockchain for a while.

        Longer-term, we may see client - blockchain - client architectures that skip the web entirely. Just like BitTorrent and other p2p protocols , theyโ€™ll stand on their own. Some web apps will still talk to them, of course, just like some exist that talk to BitTorrent.

        1. 2

          Good points ๐Ÿ‘Œ

          I think that most (definitely not all) of the web2 sites aren't better when ported to web3. Clients communicating with the blockchain is much slower than communicating with a server. This is evident to me when using Bitclout. I still like Bitclout and the blockchain-enabled features it proposes, but I wouldn't trade it for Twitter (even with the data privacy issues - but even then the data privacy issues aren't inherently web2, there could be e2e encryption).

          I think web3 is the future, but the impactful products will play on a different plane than web2. E.g. things that are only enabled by the blockchain and digital ownership, such as the metaverse.

          1. 2

            Itโ€™s funny you mention Bitclout! I worked on a project that involved running a custom Bitclout node to catch incoming changes in chain state and to push new clouts and other actions.

            The latency really was an issue. I donโ€™t understand why they used bitcoin as their model when making a blockchain to power a social network. Why not just fork Solana?

            1. 2

              Itโ€™s funny you mention Bitclout! I worked on a project that involved running a custom Bitclout node to catch incoming changes in chain state and to push new clouts and other actions.

              That's pretty dope ๐Ÿ‘Œ

              The latency really was an issue. I donโ€™t understand why they used bitcoin as their model when making a blockchain to power a social network. Why not just fork Solana?

              Only god knows ๐Ÿ˜Š

      2. 1

        And a couple of hours later, this is what I see on Twitter: "Introducing NFT profile pictures" ๐Ÿ˜†

  30. 2

    When are you making it so that you have to stake X amount for every pomodoro timeslot, and if you slack off during it you get slashed? I'll help you with a supervising videocamera w/ AI to judge if you're slacking off.

    Cheers x)

    1. 1

      Hey Hugo ๐Ÿ˜… I appreciate that you took the AMA very literally ๐Ÿ˜‚

      When are you making it so that you have to stake X amount for every pomodoro timeslot, and if you slack off during it you get slashed?

      I'll check with customer feedback before I can answer this ๐Ÿ˜†

      I'll help you with a supervising videocamera w/ AI to judge if you're slacking off.

      My man ๐Ÿ™ I think with this feature Microbreak Boss should go to #1 in the App Store ๐Ÿ˜„

  31. 2

    Hey Maxime!

    After you quit your job as a blockchain dev, how much runway did you have? And what date did you quit?

    Did you try managing your job and side projects or was it just not feasible?

    1. 2

      Hey ๐Ÿ‘‹ Thanks for the great question ๐Ÿ˜Š

      After you quit your job as a blockchain dev, how much runway did you have? And what date did you quit?

      I didn't have any runway ๐Ÿ˜„ I really don't have many expenses though - I can get by freelancing only a couple of hours per week with my existing customers. I quit about Q2 of 2021 ๐Ÿค”

      Did you try managing your job and side projects or was it just not feasible?

      I'm more of a "burn the boats" kinda guy ๐Ÿ˜… I don't even think it's the smartest move, but that's just how my brain works ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

      Check out this blog post if you're interested in a more in-depth answer ๐Ÿ˜Š

      https://newsletter.maximedupre.com/issues/why-i-decided-that-being-an-indie-app-maker-having-a-300k-job-913972

  32. 2

    Heya Maxime. What was the hardest part as an entrepreneur with Microbreak Boss ?

    1. 2

      Hey Goutham, thanks for jumping in here ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      I'd say the hardest part is that the market for break/productivity/focus/pomodoro timers is a crowded one (to say the least ๐Ÿ˜…). I had started this project just for learning purposes, but now I have so much fun building it that I don't want to stop ๐Ÿ˜‚

      I do feel like I have a unique product though ๐Ÿ˜Š I don't know if that's enough, but so long as I'm having fun I'll keep doing it ๐Ÿš€

      1. 2

        That's actually cool how you're taking it in a positive light. So often times do your customers switch from an existing tool or are trying out a tool from this market for the first time?

        1. 2

          I'm not sure. I should probably know this ๐Ÿ˜…

          My gut feeling is that a lot of them switch from an existing tool, because mine is at least as powerful (if not more), but also looks badass ๐Ÿ˜Ž (cool menubar icons, you can see who else is online and working while you are, etc)

          But yeah...I think I need to pinpoint who my customers are a little bit better ๐Ÿ˜†

          1. 2

            That's awesome buddy. More power to you ๐Ÿ˜Ž

            1. 1

              ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ™

  33. 1

    How's the journey going?

    1. 1

      Enjoying the rollercoaster ride :D

  34. 1

    This comment was deleted 4 months ago.

Trending on Indie Hackers
What is your ramen profitable goal? 29 comments When is the right time to incorporate? 20 comments Going all-in on myself 18 comments Stablecoins not so stable โ€” Terra (UST) crashed 18 comments Ask for early feedback: Script management platform 12 comments Paul Graham on ramen profitability 6 comments