Corporate Underbelly Submission Guidelines

Please read through this before submitting.

Sean Kernan
Corporate Underbelly


Via Pexels Images

The below guidelines are intended not only to help your submission gain acceptance, but help it perform better on Medium, and leave your audiences more satisfied.

Please check in periodically to see these requirements. They will be updated alongside the evolving needs of both the platform and publication. I am only accepting unpublished drafts.

Content Focus

I’m looking for sincere, non-fiction articles about corporate misconduct you’ve witnessed. Ideally, there should be a story arc that is clear and easy to follow.

Misconduct is a spectrum, and can be a small as misusing company supplies, or full-on fraud. The most important thing is to shed light on the impact of such misconduct on individuals, organizations, or society at large. You may use other business case studies in context to the story, but please don’t make the whole article a giant case study of another news event. Your voice and experience is what makes a story unique.

If you haven’t worked within corporate offices, I will also accept stories related to your interaction with companies, and the frustrations or unethical behaviors you’ve encountered.

Because we are discussing a negatively-framed subject, it is inevitable that stories will have some degree of negativity, but please refrain from turning it into a long rant that whiffs of sour grapes. Thread the needle so to speak.

We are looking for quality content. Quality is a broad term, but generally means the reader finishes an article feeling like their time was well spent. It should make an impact on the reader and, in a perfect world, be memorable. Quality is the most important thing and when there’s a high degree of it, the submission rules can be bent.

Article Length

Ideal word count: 900–1,300 words. I’m flexible on this if there’s good reason. First person voice is strong for this narrative style, but not required.


Your article doesn’t need to be sad, funny, or happy. But it does need a voice and point of view. Write your story. Share your thoughts and feelings. I love seeing analysis blended into the storytelling. Think through all that happened and what it meant for you, your worldview, or your life. The reader should finish your article with a better understanding you and the journey you’ve been on in your career, and the characters you’ve met along the way.

Submission advice

Have a strong narrative arc with a clear and logical beginning, middle and end. Ideally, there will be a sequence of events. Open strong. Hook the reader’s interest. Include dialogue if you can. Use descriptive language. I like adjectives, strong verbs, and sensory details. What did you see? What did you hear? Describe the little things. Draw us into your world. Let us see, hear, and feel what you experienced.

Be vigilant about avoiding clichés, meaning phrases that are overused and lack originality, such as “in the nick of time” or “the calm before the storm.” They aren’t resolved by writing, “The calm before the tempest.”


  • Use a clear and concise writing style.
  • Refrain from excessive italicizing and bolding of words. Let the writing express the thought, not the formatting. There should rarely be exclamation marks.
  • Spellcheck and proof the piece beforehand.
  • Add 5 topics to your piece.
  • Use a title and subtitle to organize your content. Here’s a great guide on formatting your Medium articles if you are new at it. Here is a title case converter for your title.
  • Use high quality royalty-free images (Pexels, Unsplash, etc). Make sure to cite and hyperlink the image in the caption. Bonus point if you add an alt text description.
  • Include a catchy title and a short, engaging introduction. Beware of clickbaity titles if you want a shot at a boost. Listicles tend to get boosted less often.
  • Properly cite any sources or references used in your article. Medium loves useful and relevant facts that have quality sources behind them.
  • Content should be inclusive and appeal people of all backgrounds and experiences and should not include offensive gender, ethnic or racial stereotypes.
  • No clutter at the bottom of your article, please. If you want to include one short caption and a link, that’s fine. Noise and thumbnails at the bottom of the article creates distractions and reduces engagement with the original piece.
  • No AI generated content, please. Per Medium’s guidelines, we want human generated stories
  • I will make editing tweaks to the article.


If you have read the above and want to publish with Corporate Underbelly, please submit here. I look forward to seeing your submissions!




Sean Kernan
Corporate Underbelly

Writer and writing instructor. Always on the hunt for a good story. That guy from Quora. Writing out of Tampa, Florida.