Why I Started a New Publication

The story behind Epilogue

Penny Zang
Jan 27 · 4 min read
Photo by Adam Jang on Unsplash

I was a writer on Medium for a little over a month when I started Epilogue, but I had been thinking about it since Day 1. I distinctly remember saying to my husband that I thought there were opportunities on Medium. Not untapped opportunities necessarily because Medium is very popular, but uncharted possibilities for many writers that I know. And the more I learned about Medium, the more convinced I was that a new publication centered on engagement and community could take off.

I waited. I asked around. I Googled. And then I just did it. Epilogue became a reality faster than I originally intended, but now that it is up and running, I am excited to see what’s next.

If you don’t know me, the editor for Epilogue, let’s fix that. I certainly want to know you. In a community-centered space, I think it’s essential that we at least recognize each other’s names as a way to get started.

I am an English professor, a writer, and a parent. I live in the south now, but I’m from Baltimore, Maryland where I used to wait tables and write stories about waiting tables. I have an M.F.A. in Creative Writing and I’ve been published in literary magazines like The Louisville Review and Superstition Review, among others.

But you don’t need to know my bio to know me. Our bios are rarely that interesting. Here are the things I love and talk about most: chocolate, coffee, cats, mimosas, and, of course, books. Add in some Tori Amos, My So-Called Life, and murder podcasts and we’re getting closer to a full picture. I like to talk about community and friendship as much as I like to discuss the fact that Velveeta responded to one of my tweets. At work, my coworkers congregate in my office not because I’m popular, but because I am a good listener and I get along with everyone. If we’re friends, you’ve got me for life.

(Also, I grew up in a bar and I once won a car in a mall trivia contest. Those are stories for another time).

This is the year I keep trying new things (like starting publications on Medium) before I fully know what I’m getting into. It’s like that quote by Ray Bradbury (or the number of others who are credited with the idea): “You’ve got to jump off the cliff all the time and build your wings on the way down.” I’m reminded of that quote almost daily.

Epilogue’s mission is to share personal stories about what writers are doing behind the scenes. This includes writing process and the writing life, in general, but is open to include topics such as parenting as a writer, publishing, making time, building a website, and interacting on social media. These are the stories I like to hear and I think other writers will be interested, as well. A straight-forward guide on world building, for example, might be helpful, especially for new writers, but there are so many of those articles already out there. What makes any writer’s story compelling is their background and their perspective. Only they can tell that particular story.

Those are the stories Epilogue wants. There’s a fine line between personal diary/blog and helpful stories designed with audience in mind, though. I’m excited to see how writers rise to the challenge.

If you’re a writer for Epilogue, I want to know you. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook — you name it. I’ve even set up a Twitter account for Epilogue and a closed Facebook group for the Epilogue crew. I am serious about building a community. Writing can be isolating. We need more spaces to share and meet others.

If you aren’t a writer for Epilogue, I want to know you, too. Community is not just for writers. And if you’re part of Medium’s partner program, you know how important it is to have a supportive group of followers. It often starts by learning about the site and writing good content, but forming connections with others on Medium seems like a natural step, as well.

I look forward to seeing you in the comments section.


Behind-the-scenes stories about writing process…

Penny Zang

Written by

English professor + book nerd + drinking buddy. Visit me at Pennyzang.com and Twitter: @penny_zang



Behind-the-scenes stories about writing process, publishing, and the writing life.

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