TL;DR: a few weeks ago I quit my job, and I'm now officially self-employed. My plan is to spend the next two years (at least) as an independent iOS / Apple-platforms developer, with the aim of building and launching a sustainable product.
I started developing for iOS back in 2010, releasing 5 apps in the years through high school and university: a todo app (of course), a budgeting app, and a few games. Although each achieved varying levels of success (hint: little), I fell in love with the possibilities and reach that the iPhone and App Store made possible.
Back to now, and I'll be the first to admit that I'm approaching this transition from a different angle than most. I have no already-successful side hustle waiting in the wings, let alone a fully-fleshed idea for what I'll be working on. It's been great fun to describe exactly what I'm planning on doing with my time to friends and family.
But I've never really been an "evening and weekends" programmer (whilst always admiring those that can pull it off), and after moving into full-time work in 2015 I've gradually felt my individual creativity dry up. Although being extremely fortunate to work professionally as an iOS developer, the dream of someday being able to focus 100% of my energy on my "own thing" moved to the back of my mind.
Over the past 8 years I've been lucky enough to work alongside a bunch of amazing people at a bunch of amazing places (ranging from monolith to startup), and I now feel ready to put that experience to use. What was originally "what if" turned into "when", and finally "why not", thanks to the encouragement of Nina, my wonderful wife, and so here we are.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't daunted by the prospect of working independently, but I feel energised and ready for a challenge. I can't wait to get my hands dirty with all aspects of product development again, and I'm confident it'll be an rewarding experience regardless of what comes out of it.
Here's to the next two years 🍻.
For those who are interested, I'm planning on writing extensively of my experience on Mastodon, and this blog. I'd love for you to follow my journey there!