Recently moved to Seattle on my own while working remotely and bootstrapping a side project (read: very little free time like all of us) and while I haven’t met too many folks yet, these have been my more frequented groups:
Technical meetups - ones more specific to what you’re working on. Up here the XCoders (apple developers) do tech talks + beer afterwards every other week, and coffee nights to work on things/casually talk every week.
Hipchat with fellow bootstrappers (such as the one with @mbuckbee and friends)
A masterminds group - a few of us started one after microconf, Brennan’s starting a mastermind-group matchmaking service for freelancers soon.
The coffee shop - I go sometimes if I’m in a funk, but I get antsy after a few hours of sitting somewhere that isn’t as comfortable as the home office. I honestly tend to like libraries better.
That said, back in Tahoe, I did none of the above and instead the following:
- structure the day to wake up early, get work done, go snowboarding for a couple hours in the afternoon, then work more.
- don’t worry much about working on weekends. Enjoy it with friends, go boarding and party.
…and I was arguably more productive than I am now. There’s something to be said about just having an environmental hack that gets you out of the house easily and exercise.
I want to try the coworking space thing one of these days, but on paper it always seems to be a bigger inconvenience due to all the hardware I use beyond the laptop (monitors / microphones / oscilloscopes / etc.)
Personally, I’m curious to see if there’s a way to rekindle the whole ‘Jelly’ concept started by Amit Gupta years ago. My usual problem with the ones I’ve seen is that they start at 8am, which is usually a bad time due to client calls. Think an afternoon-focused Jelly would make more sense, especially if you can work with the coffee shop to find ‘slow days’ when they’d really appreciate more business.
Side rant: Finally, A good backless chair (such as the travel-friendly ergoergo or swopper) and a monitor raised up to eye level makes you stop lusting as much about coffee shops. Sorry for the rant, I just feel like many cheap bootstrappers forget to invest in good tools first.