Reflections On Writing For Medium

Doug Green
Sep 5 · 3 min read

After a few months on being on Medium, my primary reaction is to say I am intrigued with the duality of this platform. Writers seem to fall into two different camps.

  • One- write for the hell of it to talk to people.
  • Two — write for the money (at first glance, this appears to be the vast majority.)

Random Notes Without Rhyme or Reason

  • I read one how-to medium blog. (Thanks Casey) to get a handle on this platform.
  • The rest of my reading is a syncretic mix of “stuff” as befits a non-fiction writer looking for a wide range of input.
  • I don’t see the things I’m writing or want to write here as serious moneymakers.
  • Its a good thing making money isn’t my primary goal. Getting stuff out of my mind and off my chest is my goal.
  • I won’t turn any money down — I’m foolish but not crazy.
  • I read a writer complaining because she had a few posts that weren’t syndicated out. I have small notes at the top of every post saying “Our curators were not able to review this story for distribution in topics due to high volume. This story will still be shared with followers.”
  • One writer suggested you write one post a day. Hell, I have trouble getting to one a week. (Yeah, the paying stuff comes first.) ;-)

Why write on Medium at all?

  • Why not?
  • There are no hosting fees,
  • There are no hackers, or if there are then somebody else is taking care of the problem.
  • There is a built in audience who may find my writing — or they may not.

In any case, it’s far less effort to write on Medium then it is on a self hosted Wordpress blog (I have three of those — one for each pen name.)

Having said all that, from what I can see, I’m not your typical medium writer.

One: I’m already a full-time writer — and have been for over 20 years.

Two: I’m older then most writers here — at 70 I have a different viewpoint on life and living than many.

Three: I’m way too curious to write about a single topic — which I’m told is how you develop an audience here and make money.

The Point?

The point to Medium — in fact to all writing — is to make decisions about the “why” you write.

  • If it’s to clear your mind, then that’s one thing.
  • If it’s to make money, that’s entirely a different mindset, skill set and target audience.

My Bottom Line:

I’ll continue to write here but with absolutely no expectation of ever making any serious money.

My purpose to writing on Medium is to clear my head and make room for other words — paying words — to emerge.

Is There A Lesson Here For You?

This is a good question I ask about every non-fiction article I write. “What does the reader get out of these words? Or am I simply blowing smoke out some orifice?”

My suggestion would be to be very clear about why you’re writing on Medium. Is it to make money? To practice wordsmithing? To develop an audience for the kind of writing you’d like to do? It doesn’t matter. Be clear and write from that point of view.

(Insert end of sermon here.) :-)

p.s.#1 Yes, I understand using Medium in the title will mean this article won’t get syndicated. Given my notes have never been syndicated, I don’t see this as much of a loss.

p.s.#2 Thanks for taking the time to read this one.

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Doug Green

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Former nurseryman, now writer and curious about what’s over the next hill and how to get there in either my Triumph Spitfire or sailboat.

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