What We Look For in Our Writers

Mind Cafe is a collection of simple, useful and honest essays about personal development.

Adrian Drew
Aug 13, 2018 · 7 min read

Contents

  1. What we’re looking for
  2. Writing guidelines: topics, style, word-count etc.
  3. Members-only articles
  4. Becoming a contributor

1. Our Message

But why?

Because at the beginning of 2018, my fiancé was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. Before then, I’d never have imagined myself being able to cope with such awful news — yet here I am. Coping.

And that’s because I learned how to cope — by reading philosophy books, memoirs about happiness and anything and everything I could find about personal development.

I guess I just tried to teach myself how to be happy; to find peace in the face of adversity. But I wanted to do more than that.

I wanted to create a space that would teach other people how to live as happily as possible, even in the most testing of circumstances.

So I launched Mind Cafe — a publication with one goal: to give people the tools they need to live better lives, regardless of what’s happening on the outside; a publication with the potential to grow and expand into something that could change the lives of many.

I guess it’s just my way of making a difference — sculpting something positive out of an otherwise pretty terrible situation.


2. What We’re Looking For

  1. Firstly, one single goal should underpin every article at Mind Cafe: it should teach our readers how to live a better, happier life.
  2. Next, your article should provide value to the average reader, not just a niche group of people. Before submitting, ask yourself: Would most of the people I know benefit from reading this article? If so, great. That’s another tick.
  3. Finally, your article should have a clear and actionable takeaway. This could take the shape of a step-by-step process or simple tips for the reader. Either way, they should be left with something that they can actually use.

3. Writing Guidelines

Editing

Because of this, we highly recommend that all of our writers run their work through Grammarly. When we receive a draft, we don’t want to see more than a couple of critical errors, and Grammarly will help you fix these easily (and for free).


Style

We believe in good writing, but good writing as something that’s accessible and easy to understand. We don’t want long, complicated sentences that people have to read several times to fully understand.

While these have their place in academic texts, we believe that readers looking to improve their lives want to access useful information quickly and easily — without having to decipher archaic words that only seven people on the planet can actually define.

As well as simplicity, we’d like you to keep your article engaging. Mix things up. Balance short, snappy sentences and longer, more informative ones to keep your reader interested. Make it flow. Keep it exciting.


Format

  • Use an eye-catching cover photo that you have the rights to. You can find such photos, license-free, on Unsplash, Pexels or Pixabay. Feel free to use your own photography, too. Just make sure to tell us where you got your photos from when you submit your article. To align with our colour scheme and brand, we may decide to change your photo.
  • Don’t promote. If you’re looking to sell/market products, Medium is the wrong place for it. As is Mind Cafe. Your articles are also far less likely to be selected for distribution by Medium’s curators if you advertise. We may also add a link to our newsletter at the bottom of your article, too. This won’t affect your rates of curation.

Topics

  • Self-improvement
  • Psychology
  • Mental health
  • Neuroscience
  • Productivity
  • Confidence
  • Positivity
  • Mindfulness

You’re not restricted to these. So long as it’s something that the average reader can benefit from and it follows our guidelines, we’re happy.


External Support

These references will make your article much more compelling, giving readers confidence in applying the information you’re providing.

Granted, not all topics will require equal amounts of supporting evidence. If you’re planning on writing about your personal experiences, do so, but aim to draw upon other sources to reinforce your points if you can. These may be studies, philosophies or even just quotes from relevant scholars.

In the article below, I outlined philosopher Epicurus’s theories of happiness. I didn’t include any of my personal experiences in that piece. I focused solely on external philosophies.

Yet in the following article, I spoke almost entirely about my own experiences. I offered an insight into some of the most troubling aspects of my life and how I’ve learned to cope with them along the way.

There’s no right or wrong, but we’ve certainly found that our best-performing articles, and those likely to be selects for curation, are the ones that are supported by at least some theory/evidence. If you’re going to hold anything up as absolute truth, just be sure to support your arguments.


4. We Only Accept Members-Only Articles

For large publications with hundreds of thousands of followers, distribution doesn’t matter so much. They have a lot of organic traffic to keep them going. For smaller ones like us, it’s our only chance of growing and reaching a wider audience.

While, ideally, we’d keep everything free, there are two key advantages to us doing switching things over.

1. You get paid

2. You get more exposure

Friend Links

Anybody can access our content and Mind Cafe via our social media channels, where we share friend links to selected pieces.

5. Submitting an Article

Then, fill in this form. (Only once per article please!)

If we like your article and wish to publish it, we’ll add you as a writer to Mind Cafe, after which you’ll be required to do two things.

  1. First, we’ll need you to submit your article to our publication. Simply click on the three dots in the top-right corner of your article and select ‘Add to Publication’.

Note: we only accept unpublished drafts.

2. Make sure your article is eligible to earn money via the Medium Partner Program. When you click ‘Publish’, you’ll see a tick box like the one below.

3. Once it’s been added, we’ll edit your work, run it past you and then add it to our publishing schedule.

Rejected Pieces



If you encounter any issues or have questions about our guidelines, you can email me directly via adrian@mindcafe.co or my co-editor reed@mindcafe.co

We’ll look forward to reading your content,

The Team at Mind Cafe

Mind Cafe

Relaxed, inspiring essays about happiness.

Adrian Drew

Written by

Inspiring others to live happier, one article at a time. Get in touch via adrian@mindcafe.co

Mind Cafe

Mind Cafe

Relaxed, inspiring essays about happiness.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade