🚀 Launching Resavma: The trials of solo development

Jul 6th, 2021

I recently launched a new version of Resavma, which contains a massive amount of updates. The initial project was a subdomain of my original website clintgwinter.com (which is now clintwinter.me as you can tell). It looked like this:

Early resavma screenshot

As you can see, the only features it had were searching and filtering by save type and subreddit. I don't think tagging was fully working yet.

Around January of this year, I decided I wanted to see this project through. I've always believed I could successfully develop products that people would want to buy. I don't think I realized at the time how much work is required. I have made a ton of progress and there is still so much more to be done. Seven months of consistent work and only now was I able to launch something in good enough shape to share.

New resavma screenshot

When you are doing everything on your own, there is an absurd number of different skills that are required to be successful. And this is in today's world where ridiculously comprehensive tools are available for just about everything to make it easier. You are responsible for:

  • coming up with the idea
  • fleshing it out and developing a plan of attack
  • managing the feature requirements
  • handling payments and finances
  • mocking up the design
  • accounting for UX concerns
  • server management and dev-ops
  • back-end development
  • implementing the designs
  • creating a marketing strategy
  • copywriting

Each one of these points goes much deeper too. For example, mocking up the design requires deciding on a color scheme, choosing fonts, designing every component and figuring out how they fit together, creating mobile layouts, designing logos and icons, creating a cohesive brand, etc. If you're really lucky, you have a hit on the first attempt. I'm on my third or fourth design iteration at this point.

In the future I expect to also be handling support requests, refunds and other concerns, continued feature development, bug fixes, and much more.

Doing a real world project like this is very valuable if you are worried about having enough experience. I had professional PHP experience, but not Laravel, and that made it hard to break into the industry. With the help of an awesome mentor and dedicating my time to practicing Laravel (by building projects like Resavma), diving its source code, and reading their documentation, it paid off.

Resavma is a project for me to practice business and entrepreneurship, same as it was for me to practice Laravel. Whether or not a single person spends a dollar on it doesn't matter. The value of what I've learned and am still learning is more valuable.

Eventually it becomes a game of trial and error. Failures of this type are limited in downside and unlimited in upside. Every time I fail I learn what not to do and try something else.

I plan to be building more publicly in the future. Logistically, I am currently unable to do that, but expect to see more of my work a few months from now. I'd like to create things on YouTube, share more code, and that sort of thing.

Check out Resavma and let me know what you think. I'll be rounding out the features that I planned, including multiple accounts, exports, and dark mode. If anyone bothers to provide feedback and has a good idea I may add them too.