Well hello there. Welcome to Medium. We don’t know how you got here, but let’s be frank, it really doesn’t matter does it?
We’re just glad you’re here. Here’s your chance to do and be something great.
If we were to venture a guess, we’d say you’re probably wondering how to make this platform fulfill all your dreams.
Sure you are. We all did when we started on Medium.
You may be like a lot of us when we began the journey; a little tentative at first. No problem Newcomer, we didn’t really understand how Medium worked either. In fact, there are still quite a number of us who are tentative about posting, but don’t fret too much about it. You’ll come around.
Just like they will.
Learning to post is an important aspect of your success here on Medium. We recommend you ask for help a lot in the beginning.
Medium has probably one of the best “how to” guides in the industry. Help is only a click away. And don’t feel stupid when you have to ask. There’s a lot more of us hitting that damned “more help” button than you’d think.
You are not alone.
Which brings us to our next point.
It’s important you understand this Newcomer. Whether this is the first time you’re writing, or you’ve been writing since you were old enough to hold a pencil (a pen for the more fortunate among you) the Medium community is filled with writers just like you.
Trust us when we say community, because it is. It’s a huuuuuuge family of people who love to write. And yes, we said family.
Although none of us are related by blood (well some of us may be), our union has been forged in the fires of the written word.
We’ll support you on your journey so don’t fret. We’re a pretty tolerant group here. But even we have our limits. Remember that.
Let’s put this in terms you may be able to better understand.
Don’t screw it up.
We love having you here, and we want you to succeed so we feel it’s important you understand some of the basic ground rules. They’re really simple if you think about it, and we hope you study this guide before you formulate your plans to rule the Medium writing world.
Here they are. Five simple guidelines.
Checking The Stat Page
When you check out your stat section for the first time, you may get a little disappointed. Don’t sweat it. Perfectly natural. Those little green bars hovering near the bottom of the graph can really be a monster buzz kill.
We’ve been there, done that.
Don’t worry, you’ll start getting some traction if you do one thing. One simple thing. We’ll let you know what you need to do at the end of this guide. However, there are several areas we need to cover first.
So, let’s get back to the stat page for a minute. As informative as it is, it has to all of us here at one point, served as one of the most depressing, life sucking, ego bruising, despair invoking thing we on Medium can ever cast our eyes upon.
The stat page will draw you in; give you an exhilarating taste of being accepted by your fellow writers in the community.
Obsessive Stat Checking (we call it OSC) is the beginning of an endless spiraling journey into the pits of hellish frustration.
The stat page can hook your ass so bad you’ll soon discover you can’t exist a single, solitary, minute of the day without checking your stats.
We recommend once a day. Maybe twice. Once in the morning and once before you break down in tears of frustration and exhaustion at the end of the day.
But no more than that.
Oh, it won’t happen to you Newcomer? You’re much smarter than that you say?
Okay, don’t say we didn’t warn you.
Commenting On Every Single Article You Read
We understand, we really do. You’ve read the Medium hype (not hype) about engagement. You’ve convinced yourself you need to offer lengthy diatribes on every article or opinion piece you read.
We get it. How do we say this so it will make the biggest impact? Oh yes. We’ve got it.
DON’T DO THAT SHIT!
A lot of us on Medium sectionalize our precious time between reading and writing. We spend our days reading thought-provoking articles and writing from our souls and hearts.
Let’s face it. Expecting us to stop and read long winded comments from you is unreasonable. In fact, it’s often a monumental waste of our time.
Trust us, it is.
It’s okay to offer a short opinion on how much you liked the story or even a contrasting thought as long as it’s tastefully and tactfully provided.
We do it all the time.
Here’s a suggestion.
Why not turn that eight minute diatribe you’re about to inflict on another author via the comment section into a piece of your own? Get it out there. Some of us may read it, some of us won’t.
That’s just the way this stuff works.
Hate speech, Misogynistic Attitudes, Racially Motivated Vitriol, Sex, Age And Gender Bias.
Remember this Newcomer.
There is no place for misogynistic, racist, hate filled vitriol on this platform. Medium is NOT a pulpit for you to spur masses into revolt against the LGBTQ community, people of whatever race you despise, women or the elderly. If you want to spew venom and promote a fucking master race then by all means put on your wife beater tee shirt and open up a Twitter or Facebook account. The haters and trolls on both of those platforms will probably welcome you with open arms.
Here, not so much. We’ll get your ass kicked off this platform if you try that shit here.
Social Medium And Getting And Giving Claps
It’s probably one of the most interesting social diseases being spread around the Medium platform.
Yeah, we know. We made a funny. Deal with it.
We’re going to climb out on a limb and make an assumption you’re no infant to social media. It’s highly unusual for a writer here not to know about Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
Well, we have two trains of thought on the clap subject.
Newcomers such as yourself (and some of the old timers here as well) are so used to social media “liking” with a single click or giving something a “like” they often do the same thing on this platform. One clap means they read the piece and they “like or liked” it.
So, at least it’s a clap right?
We know what you’re thinking.
You’re thinking if you have a thousand followers (we’re going to talk about that next) and each follower gives you a single clap on every story you write, then hell, you’re going to do great.
Uh, not so much. It rarely, if ever, happens that way.
Do not, we repeat, do not, fool yourself into thinking every single article you write is going to be read, or you’ll get claps from every person following you.
Must we remind you we’re a community of writers? Have you forgotten we’re all posting articles and pieces? Have you forgotten the Medium community consists of thousands of writers, each of us writing articles each day?
Yes, that’s right. A lot of us do it daily.
So the chance of you Newcomer, getting a thousand claps on your article right out of the gate, even if each of us clap for you only once, is about oh, let’s say, a million to one.
So it’s safe to say most times when (or if) you get a single clap it’s probably because the reader is used to the one clap “like” platform and has forgotten they can give up to fifty claps if they read and enjoy the piece.
It’s also safe to say some of those one clappers know their way around the Medium platform and know they can give more than one clap, but they’re just a bunch of well, middle finger flippers.
We’ll let you decide which angle you wish to take on the one and only one clappers.
Following To Be Followed Or Following
The fifth and final guideline for success on Medium is following. A lot of us here on Medium made mistakes in this arena, and some of us still do. We know old habits are sometimes really hard to break.
Because of this very fact, we’d like to offer you a suggestion for developing a good habit from the onset.
Do not follow an author with the expectation an author will follow you if you’ve never taken time to engage.
We see this shit every day and frankly it bores the living hell out of us. We encourage you to consider how needy and disingenuous you appear when you do this.
How do we know that’s what your doing?
Think about this. During your short stint here on Medium, you’ve never highlighted anything on any article. You’ve not responded, nor have you ever clapped for a single article of ours (which means you’re worse than the one clappers). By your complete lack of engagement, you’ve let us know you’ve never read a thing we’ve written.
And yet, you’re suddenly following us?
Really? Come on.
We know the only reason you’re following is because you’re hoping the thousands of people following us are going to start following you and read your shit.
It could happen, but don’t hold your fucking breath.
Writers usually, yes we said usually, follow each other on this platform because they’ve read the other author’s work and liked what they’ve read. When we discover like-minded writing styles or tone and voice of another author’s work which resonates with us, we follow them.
We seldom, if fucking ever, follow them because they have more followers than us.
Try this why don’t you Newcomer? Read an author’s work and engage with them before you decide to follow or not follow them. Do them and yourself both a favor.
Okay, remember at the beginning we said we’d let you know the one thing you need to do in addition to the guidelines to be successful on Medium?
Oh come on, wake the hell up.
Here it is, and trust us if you do it every day on Medium, or any other platform (we actually prefer Medium) you will achieve solid, organic success which will eventually blossom into a wonderful writing career.
You have to write.
We told you it was simple. All you have to do is write. You can do it daily, weekly or even monthly if you so choose, but to be successful on Medium…
That’s what you’re here for, remember that.
So get at it. We’re waiting to see whatcha got.
Let’s keep in touch: email@example.com