8 Medium Clichés You Must Write Before Total Enlightenment

  1. The CEO self-help content marketing article. Call it content marketing, call it “giving back,” these MREs always leave a funny taste in your mouth. Read these if you love being sucked into the lifecycle vortex.
  2. The would-be self-help article that (not so) unexpectedly relates a unique story of heartbreak. It usually starts around step 6 or 7. All you wanted was to learn how to change your life, and now you’re reaching for the Kleenex realizing that it’s going to be harder than you thought. “I can barely find a date! How am I supposed to get divorced?”
  3. The tragic, rambling story of social injustice suffered at the hands of the government. Also known as the self-helpless article or the gristleblower anthem, these articles are truly a sign of the age. Sorry, but 1.4k recommends doesn’t mean you’ve led a successful protest.
  4. The motivational article about good writing where the take-home message is “nobody really knows” and literally every sentence is its own paragraph. The truth is, nothing teaches you how to write better than sticking your own finger down your throat.
  5. The “Four-Hour Workweek” wannabe article. With so many instructional pieces about how to become successful, happy, and productive entrepreneurs in “just six months,” we non-successful folk must all be stupid, illiterate, stubborn twits or worse — critical thinkers.
  6. The reminder to appreciate life’s “messiness.” Nothing is going to work out perfectly, and you just have to get used to that. Your ideals are naive. I am going to help you to grow up, because I rubbed life’s soft, pale underbelly until it shat on me. And it was glorious.
  7. The “startups aren’t as glamorous as you think” cry for help. Medium owes a big thankyou to the hordes of startup employees who endured hardship as cogs in the machine and then documented their disillusionment. You know you have a good product when it converts other people’s misfortune into long-term user engagement.
  8. The critique of Medium as a breeding ground for clichés and bastard writing. I miss the good old days, too — back in 4,000 BC, when there simply was no unoriginal writing.
Arkut, what have you been up to lately?
My brother Moluk, I have written a story!
What? What do you mean, “written”? What nonsense is this?
It is a new medium of communication!
New medium my ass! Let me see — Good God…You’re a genius.
If you like it, Moluk, click the ❤.

— An inscription on a 6,000-year-old Egyptian tomb

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