Hitting the 100 Followers Mark

All of a sudden, I got curious

MaryRose Cobarde Candare
ILLUMINATION’S MIRROR

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Photo by Hannah Olinger on Unsplash

About eight months ago, I showed up at Medium, knowing little about how it works for certain purposes (I knew I’d figure them out along the way) but certain about the fact that this is potentially a happy place for the reader and writer in me.

I was initially preoccupied with letting my own circles know about the stories I put out. I did that while inviting them to come to the platform and follow me. Not surprisingly, they cheered me on and recited pleasantries about my writing. But surprisingly, not many of them understood what they needed to do or perhaps what they needed to be in order to make it worth their while to be on the platform and seek me out.

So, I learned that you can’t make readers of people overnight. You can’t force them to develop an interest in certain things at the whim of a request. Most of all, you can’t expect them to “get” what you are saying. They have their own cares, mindsets, thinking patterns, reading preferences, yes even vocabulary and comprehension levels. Your story is not for everyone, no matter how you fuse your writing with what you deem to be recognizable and relatable experiences and insights.

Thankfully, the platform itself is rich in friendly advice on the woes of a newbie Medium dweller. I read on. It was my original intention, anyway. I stopped caring about my following. What I needed for myself, I gave to others — readership, appreciative claps, and thoughtful comments. I wrote sparingly, mainly personal thoughts (AI can’t make those up, or can it?) and threads that tie to my upcoming children’s book, What if the Future Comes?

Because I was present now and then, some people did see me. Perhaps they saw my comments on others’ stories. Maybe they chanced upon my stories through Illumination. However, the way it happened before I knew it, it was yesterday.

Yesterday was when I received a notification about my 100th follower. I must be honest; it felt like a surprise — a quiet win, a thoughtful validation. And I felt that only because it was organic how the number rose. It came to pass as a matter of course, of Medium engagement because I knew I had quit any sort of self-promotion after my third story.

I don’t know how this would come across, but now I feel like it might be worthwhile looking at my audience stats, not for any personal gain but to glean some insights. I want to get to know my “follow clickers” to learn our points of connection, common values, or even our core vanities.

So, I write this to you, my followers. What made you click the button? I’m as curious as I am grateful.

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MaryRose Cobarde Candare
ILLUMINATION’S MIRROR

wonderer, author, content creator, editor, teacher and lifelong learner