I have asked this question a lot in various forums and I got nice feedback, overall, the suggestion is to explain to employers my reason for the gap and for entry positions that is enough. The reason being (I wouldn't say it like this to them):
I have a disability which effected my speech and walking. It made me feel bad about myself. Even though logically I understand that many people have the same problem (or even worst) and are working and found success, this "problem" made be feel bad inside, and so, after university (where I studied a cs course) I took some time to work on my inner problems. This work wasn't clinical but personal.
At the same time, I have been keeping up with programming. I really like js, so I have been up to date with that and have personal experience with all the frameworks. Granted, through out the 5 years there have been dry spells, meaning I wouldn't call myself a hard core programmer (and I do need to apply for entry jobs) - but I truly love the field.
But just applying without some experience doesn't seem right - am I wrong?
The 5 year gap really scares me, to the point where even if no-one would hire me, I wouldn't blame them.
I thought, in order to improve my chances, I should take a bit of time to work on the following:
- Start blogging - writing web tutorials on the technologies that I want to work with (JS based)
- Create three peaces for my portfolio - they are kind of done, but need reconstruction
- Volunteer for 1-2 sites - for some charity that I might like
- contribute to open source - I have no idea how this is done (even though I use git to version control my projects)
I should have done all these throughout the 5 years, but ...
Do you think I should work on the above before looking for work, or should I just look for work in hope that the portfolio would make them look beyond the gap
Explaining why this question is not a dublicate: I don't think this is a duplicate. Whilst they both ask how to overcome gap years on a resume, I am asking whether I should undertake the plan I specified bellow. So, whether I should just apply or whether I should do what I stated in the bullet points