I Made $5363.17 My First Year on Medium — Happy Anniversary To Me!
I’m interviewing my own damn self for my one-year Medium anniversary because no one else wants to
As I start this humble-brag article elucidating my claim to fame on Medium, my Lucy-dog sits on the floor beside me, glaring in my general direction with baleful eyes.
Look, Luce, I know you want to go on your walkies, but I’ve got to get this article written to document the wild ride of my first year on Medium. These are the sacrifices I am willing to make in order for others to follow in my glorious footsteps.
In all truthfulness, my footsteps aren’t that glorious. However, with that said, I’m proud of the work I’ve done so far on Medium.
So in an attempt to make myself feel more important than I am, I have decided to craft a personal interview — asking all of the essential questions one learns after writing for Medium for an entire twelve-month period.
Of course, I would have preferred some extraordinary, young journalist to have caught wind of my unique abilities and sought me out for an interview, but we take what we can get.
The month of April marks my first anniversary with writing for Medium. There’s been ups, downs and a lot of crippling rejection.
How many times have publications rejected me?
I probably get rejected by publications once out of every four submissions. Let me tell you, A LOT of editors do not find me or my writing style charming.
In all seriousness, I don’t think that it’s whether or not they like my style. Usually, it’s just that the piece doesn’t fit in their publication. I’ve been working harder at following submission guidelines and researching what certain pubs are looking for.
However, a few publications will not publish me, no matter how much I relentlessly pursue them. You know who you are.
Does the rejection get easier after time?
Especially when it’s from publications I love to write for. Whenever I get a “sorry, we’re going to pass on this one” from pubs like Slackjaw, a little piece of my funny bone dies inside.
But the good thing about the funny bone is that it grows back pretty fast. I realize that I just need to tighten my work, heighten my humour, brainstorm more evergreen topics and stop feeling sorry for my goddamn self.
Have I ever been too afraid to publish a story?
I currently have a very personal story about mine and my dad’s relationship sitting in my drafts that I don’t think I will ever publish. I had nearly pulled the trigger about eight months ago but snatched it from the publication before they published.
I also have a satire piece about those women who “don’t believe in feminism” collecting dust right now as I can’t tell if I’ve hit my points with enough accuracy. It feels like it might come off as me not believing in feminism, and that’s not at all what I want to convey.
This is why every writer should have some writer friends to give them feedback and constructive criticism on their drafts. It makes a world of difference to get another pair of eyes on your work.
How many articles did I create?
Now, my question for you is this: is there an easier way to figure out the number of articles you’ve written altogether other than scrolling through your stats page and counting them one by one?
Has anyone made an app for that?
What was my first article, and did it do well?
We Forgot About The Kids, and no, it did not do well. It’s a personal narrative about the first few months of quarantine, and although I still love the piece to this day, nobody else seems to particularly enjoy it: bummer, man.
Amount Earned: $0.17
Total Views: 32
What article has earned the most money?
Although I stand by this article, I am slightly saddened by it too. First, because I’ve gained back all the weight due to a stint of depression during the holidays and two, I keep asking myself why the weight loss articles always do so well?
I’ve created so many more important pieces, but oh no, people just want to know how I lost a few pounds. As you can see, the majority of my yearly income came from this baby.
So if you’re looking to make cash, I’d recommend health and fitness articles. I don’t even have a background in this niche, so think how much money you could make if you have some education to back up your weight loss article.
Amount Earned to date: $3146.76
Total Views: 76K
What is the story I’m most proud of?
This is a tricky question I’m asking myself; even when self-interviewing, one must be brave enough to ask oneself the hard questions.
As a writer, I’m always most proud of the piece I’ve just finished. Then as time wears on and I read other author’s work that far exceeds my abilities, I begin to second guess everything I’ve ever put down to paper or screen.
So when taking into account the brutal taskmaster of time, I would have to say, the piece I’m most proud of is a widely ignored little gem I wrote for Dishonourable Unmentionables called I Swear On This Bible, Fried Chicken Is An Aphrodisiac.
The story is fun, and I had a lot of feedback and help in crafting this one from the publication’s editor Peter Crowe(who helped me learn what is funny when writing comedy).
It’s a shame that his publication didn’t take off faster because there are some great pieces in it from very talented writers.
Amount earned to date: $0.82
Total Views: 121
What story produced the best comments and responses?
Only because some people thought I was serious about building a sex room in my garage. They were livid that I would be so brazen as to ask for money to do such a thing. It provided me with weeks of reading material to scour through those comments watching all the people get infuriated over my supposed GoFundMe campaign.
It makes me wonder if I needed to tighten my satire skills because if people can’t tell I’m joking, am I doing this thing right? Oh well. Too late to worry about that now.
Amount Earned to date: $639.91
What was my biggest win on Medium?
My biggest win on Medium was when one of the editors of Slackjaw reached out to me to ask if I’d like to write a follow-up piece for my sex room article. This was six months after the first one had been published and entirely out of the blue. I was so excited that I got right on the task and came up with, An Open Letter To My Neighbors About The Sex Room In MY Garage.
The piece was met with much excitement from the Slackjaw community. Although, again, several commenters couldn’t seem to see through my veil of sarcasm.
I wrote a third and final story in the series, but as it happens with so many trilogies, the third part seemed to be overkill and did not rate nearly as well as its first two counterparts.
Amount Earned: $909.57
Amount earned: $161.44
What have I learned?
The biggest thing I’ve learned from writing on Medium for a year is that it is possible to make a few bucks with my writing. I’ve been writing humour online for ten years, and only in this past year have I earned money from my hobby.
I’m not a professional writer, as anyone can clearly see from my poor grammar and terrible jokes, but somehow I was able to gain a little traction and make a few people laugh.
That’s the end goal here.
If I can send out a relatable (or vastly unrelatable but funny) story to the masses, I think I’ve won. But in the spirit of transparency, I’m pretty stoked to be making some money with my words too.
So there it is a look into the hard truths of being a Medium writer for a year-long run. I’ve got a few new tricks up my sleeve for future humour pieces as well as focusing on my publication; it’s just foam.
it’s just foam
A collection of first-person accounts, highlighting the utter bliss and humiliation that comes from being human.
Well, who knew that constructing a highly self-indulgent article such as this would be so time-consuming. No wonder Medium frowns upon this sort of thing — this time could have been spent writing more adventures about the very real sex room in my garage.
Thanks for reading, folks!