On August 23rd, 2011, I was sitting on the concrete in the Y Combinator parking lot, trying to find some space to be alone and call my wife. It was Demo Day, and the crowd was full of elite and celebrity investors. We even had a private chat with Ashton Kutcher. But there I was, calling my wife to tell her how terrible this day had been. It was a startup’s worst fear, realized: Nobody cared what we were working on.
Now, almost two years later, I’m building Draft, a new way to help people write better. It has things people need, like version control, professional editing, importing/exporting, transcription tools, and social analytics–and the response from users has been incredible. Here’s what I learned in the intervening two years that led me to a project that people care about.