Here’s the Truth About Making It Big on Medium
Some of this could surprise you
People frequently message me asking for tips to hit the jackpot on Medium. It would be nice if I could sit down with everyone who asks, but then I wouldn’t get any writing done.
That’s why I keep writing about success on Medium: to help folks see that there’s no secret ingredient or trick. There’s just writing, and more writing, a good attitude, and probably a bit of luck.
These days, particularly with the recent changes to the platform, I think it’s important to understand that nobody here “has it made.”
I honestly believe that. I think many people on this platform are guilty of glancing at another writer and making assumptions about where their journey is going. Envy, jealousy, and derision all happen, and that’s perfectly human. But it’s really easy to forget that every top writer here works hard.
And if you want to succeed on Medium, you’ll have to work hard too. So, here’s the truth about making it big on Medium:
You take it seriously.
That means you put time into writing here. Even if you can’t work at it full-time or even part-time, you treat your work on Medium as seriously as any other job.
And you take your work seriously. You write about the stories that matter to you, the stories you believe can matter to others too.
You don’t take any of it too personally.
Do you know the saying that you’ve got to break a few eggs to make an omelet? Well, you do. That’s how it goes on Medium, too.
You’ve got to be willing to roll with whatever happens here. Sometimes, people won’t like you. You might write a lot of stories that flop. Break a few eggs. Don’t worry about looking stupid. Don’t obsess about putting on a good show. Be you.
You keep writing on the good and bad days.
I go through plenty of ruts on Medium. Plenty of low points where I worry about my future here. I really do. I know I’m not immune to algorithm changes that run counter to my success.
I don’t write too much about my experiences with the fear or dark side of success. I understand that it can be hard to hear somebody who’s been “making it” blab on about their worries.
Some things just don’t make sense until you’ve been there.
You make peace with an unknowable algorithm.
Nobody understands how every algorithm on Medium works. We can sense when it’s changed, and point out when we’ve noticed certain drawbacks or benefits.
But none of us can say where it’s going. We can’t hand out quick fixes or hacks. The most successful writers here make peace with all of that.
You accept that your writing and your response to the journey are the only things you can control.
It’s hard to admit that there’s only so much you can control. You can’t control how other people respond to your work.
You can’t control how much your stories make.
All you can really control is how much you write and how you respond on your own journey. And some days are just hard. Some days are brutal. It doesn’t matter if you have 3 followers or 50,000. Some things are just out of your control. Deal with the stuff you have an actual say in.