It’s been an interesting month. My earnings are way down, but to some extent that’s what I’d expected. Whenever a platform makes radical changes it almost always results in less income getting distributed to the author. This is just a fundamental law that governs human nature. If there’s a big pile of money, somebody will figure out a way to get a larger piece of it.
I’m always fascinated by how much my writing journey changes from month to month. You start to develop a sense of what works, and it becomes easier to find inspiration. In October, I experimented with several new forms of articles and had some of my most dynamic work published on An Injustice! In this article, I’ll provide a reflection on what worked, and what I plan to do going forward.
The larger the audience you reach, the greater number of insane comments you’re going to receive. There are mornings when I wake up not knowing what to write about, and I read a comment that is so fundamentally flawed and incorrect that a thousand words just spill out of me.
These days I don’t get into comment battles on Social Media. When somebody says something stupid, I bundle up the rage, take a screenshot of their comment, and write an article. That way I still get to respond, but I get paid. Here are some examples.
Communication Is Critical in Virtual Learning
You’re part teacher, part customer support representative
Don’t Blame Me For Your Mistakes
You can’t allow pride to hold you back from seeing the truth
Actually, I take back what I said about not getting into comment battles. There was one guy earlier in the month who I was stringing along because he struck me as comically hostile. I had just resolved to screenshot all of his comments and write an article about him, when the comments disappeared. I concluded he must have blocked me. I must have gone too far as I baited him along, you might still be able to see the comments though (he didn’t block you I assume). The article is here:
No, You Can’t Sprint Past an Elite Marathoner
The general public has no concept of how fast these athletes are
I really miss getting the email notification indicating one of my articles has been selected for further distribution. Writers always need more motivation, and it was a nice pat on the back to get that “Congratulations!” email.
I also used to like going through my articles and counting up how many were curated. I usually sit around 50% and I don’t understand these people who claim they are upwards of 80%. Every now and then something really good gets overlooked, or something that I didn’t think had a chance gets selected. I guess it all depends on who is sitting in the chair and pushing the button.
I have been spending a bit more effort sending articles to the “instant distribution” publications like PS I Love You, The Ascent, and The Writing Cooperative:
Should You End a Relationship Over an Accident?
When the time for forgiveness has passed
The comments that came from this one are extremely annoying:
I’m very proud of this one:
Scientists Are as Creative as Writers
How logical thinking can help your process
This one was very controversial:
No Other Professionals Claim To Be Blocked
Writers need to come up with a better excuse
I’m just like any other writer in that my work is frequently rejected. One my best performing articles this month got rejected a couple of times, and was only published after I had to go through two rounds of edits. Honestly, I was getting a little annoyed by the end, but they did a good job and I’ve received some wonderful comments on this one:
I’m very ready for the election to be over, but the reports on Republican driven voter suppression are very troubling. There is a case in Texas where Republican officials are attempting to discard over 100,000 lawfully cast votes. You can read about that here. The real concern over the 2020 election is that Trump is corrupt and will clearly do anything he can to cheat to win.
I’m happy that the Democrats seem to be taking this election seriously, but honestly it annoys me that they don’t act like this for every election. As a personal choice, I’ve decided not to follow the rules of social decorum any longer no matter what happens in the election. Conservatives get away with too much insane propaganda that we don’t challenge them on because they respond like hysterical crybabies. From now on, I’m resolved to call out injustice when I see it. Here are some examples:
The Church Owes Reparations to the LGBTQ Community
The Pope finally admitted they were wrong
Wisconsin Conservatives Act Against Battered Women
How an anti-racism statement cost a shelter $25,000
Please get out and vote for Biden and all Democratic challengers. It might be your last chance to vote in this country.
It’s strange to scroll through a list of articles that began only four weeks ago. Sometimes I see concepts that I wouldn’t even consider engaging today, as if four weeks is a long time! One of the benefits of the internet is that it allows you instant feedback and interaction, and I think that’s very valuable for writers of any discipline.
I always spend a certain amount of my time writing for paying markets, and that is likely to increase in November. I did 52 articles in October, and that feels like a pretty comfortable number. I do have a few novels I’m writing sitting on the back burner that I need to finish. Writing novels allows me time to indulge in the positive head space of imagining a better world. I need that.
Best of luck to all of you in November of 2020. Let’s cross our fingers and hope that the candidate that receives the most votes will be named the winner. It would be nice to declare our long national nightmare to be over.