Medium. 24 Days. A Newbie Report

My Expert* Findings And Analysis

*I am using “expert” in the future tense. As in someday in the future, I might be an expert. Yeah, right.

First of all, I have no illusions of being the next Ernest Hemingway (although I wouldn’t mind living on Key West.) But I love to write. When I discovered Medium at the beginning of February (via an UnSplash email), I thought it would be a good opportunity to share my writing, hopefully get some feedback, and connect with other writers. I also wanted to try my hand at writing things I normally don’t write. So I figured, why not try it? Here are my observations and what I’ve learned:

(Warning: Includes Weak Attempts At Humor And Teasing. Sensitive writers may want to bail out now.)

General Observations About Medium

I don’t understand why Fiction (or Creative Writing) is not a category on the Medium home page. I am not particularly interested in reading about self-help (I prefer others-help) or business or coding or politics. So a huge chunk of Medium content is wasted on me. But those topics are mainly what shows up on the home page. I often have to use tags to find stories that interest me. It would be helpful if Medium would allows us to customize the home page topics.

What is the deal with the image that appears when the Medium mobile app launches? All the floating heads and the creepy statue with no eyes. Why? Who thought this collage of severed heads was appealing in any way? Or would make anyone want to read. And I am pretty sure the back-of-the-head-view guy with glasses on is actually me.

What I Learned About Writing By Reading On Medium

Apparently, it’s perfectly acceptable to write a short story without an actual ending. I guess I am supposed to use my imagination as to what happens next. I would rather the author used theirs.

Apparently, Flash Fiction is supposed to tell of a horrible situation and then end with an F-bomb.

I may be confused about the definition of “humor.”

I honestly didn’t realize poetry was so popular. I am not sure why I was so surprised. Probably because my writing style is more “Poetry words good.” than poetic.

Not surprisingly, there are countless articles on Medium about writing. Some are even good. Apparently, writers who can’t think of anything else to write about turn to “old faithful.” Writing about writing. I once did a dance about dancing. I didn’t get any claps.

What I Learned About Other Writers On Medium

Lots of fiction writers on Medium write about killing other people. Lots. So I am probably not going to any Medium author conventions.

What I Learned About Making Money On Medium

I earned $3.25 on Medium in my first three weeks (My first post was February 08.) Enough to buy that cup of coffee writers are always asking readers to buy them. Except I don’t drink coffee. I’ll probably buy some Bitcoins instead.

The Wrap-Up Where I Quit Making Fun Of Things And Say Nice Things Instead

Seriously, I have gotten to interact with other writers. I have received a little feedback on my writing — and some instructional silence. I tried out some new writing categories [poetry and serious fiction.] I have found some new writers I enjoy. I have laughed out loud. I have responded. I’ve even gotten a few “claps.”

I will probably stick around for a while. Especially since I paid for a year membership up front.

Old bones. Young heart. Focusing on a wide variety of creativity. @markstarlin

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