83 Small Lessons From Writing 380 Articles in 9 Months

I wish I had this list before I started

Photo by Hannah Olinger on Unsplash

You won’t get any fluff or fillers here, so let’s jump right into the lessons.

  1. Just write and publish. Anything. Congratulations. You’re now a writer.
  2. Don’t overthink how your readers might react. You don’t have any. Yet.
  3. You’re not perfect. You never will be. Get over it.
  4. Practice headline writing. You can thank me later. 14 headline-writing tips.
  5. If you come across some great tips, don’t just read them. Implement them. You won’t improve by just reading them.
  6. Don’t worry about a niche until you’ve written at least 100 articles. It took me longer. No need to rush it.
  7. Experiment with different niches.
  8. Follow the top writers. You can learn a ton from them.
  9. Don’t expect them to follow you back. You’re still a nobody.
  10. Read widely to see what works for other writers and what doesn’t.
  11. Leave meaningful comments. Some top writers will follow you if they enjoy your comments.
  12. Don’t stress if most of your articles get close to zero reads. You’re new here.
  13. Remember the 80-20 rule. 20% of your articles will get 80% of the views.
  14. Also, remember that 80% of your articles will get 20% of the views.
  15. You’ll start to realize that you’ve learned a lot about writing. That means you’re 5% along the journey.
  16. You’ll also realize that the more you learn, the more there is left to learn. It will take you a lifetime. And you still won’t get to the end of the journey.
  17. You’ll make mistakes. Lots of them. Learn and move on. Don’t stress about them. We all make them. We’re human. Apart from the bots.
  18. Don’t get upset if most of your views are external. You need to get known widely, not just on one platform.
  19. But stick to writing on one platform until you’ve mastered it.
  20. Share your work on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, or wherever else you think it fits. The more widely shared, the better.
  21. Don’t rush the process. Take one step at a time. Trying to take 5 steps in one go means you’ll fall over. It will slow you down.
  22. Congratulate yourself on each milestone you reach. 10 stories is a milestone. 100 followers is a milestone. Earning $1 is a milestone. Reaching milestones means you’re making progress.
  23. Commit to writing consistently for a year to begin with. You can then take stock and make plans for the next year.
  24. Know that the top writers took years to perfect their craft. It will likely take you a similar length of time.
  25. Don’t expect instant success. You’ll end up disappointed.
  26. Don’t give up too soon.
  27. Publish in smaller publications, to begin with.
  28. Read and follow the submission guidelines for each publication. Editors are busy. They don’t have time to hold your hand.
  29. Treat editors with the utmost respect. Don’t expect them to drop everything just because you submitted an article.
  30. Have some patience. You may not get a reply from editors for days or sometimes weeks. It’s not personal.
  31. Some readers will love your stories. Others will hate them. You can’t please everyone. Don’t even try to.
  32. Help other writers. Build a tribe of readers and writers. Helping each other benefits everyone.
  33. The more you give, the more you receive.
  34. Don’t expect anything in return. Give because you want to give. Don’t give because you’re expecting something in return.
  35. If readers or writers help you, thank them. You will stand out.
  36. Write for your readers not for yourself. No one wants to read your boring journal.
  37. Ask yourself how readers will benefit from your article. If there’s no benefit to anyone, rewrite the story.
  38. Don’t be afraid to be controversial. Controversy pays.
  39. Don’t be controversial just for the sake of it. That’s just annoying.
  40. Take time off from writing. You also need to take care of yourself.
  41. Once you start getting popular, you’ll have haters. That means your articles are provoking a response in your readers. That’s a good thing.
  42. Thank haters for their feedback. Don’t let them draw you into an argument.
  43. Learn the rules of the platform. They’re important.
  44. Don’t engage in follow-for-follow tactics. It’s pointless. Follow other writers whose work you enjoy. Others will follow you if they enjoy your writing.
  45. Don’t be frightened to submit an article to big publications once you’re settled into your writing habit.
  46. Don’t expect automatic views and reads from big publications.
  47. Medium isn’t dead. Despite what some writers claim.
  48. Use tags/topics properly.
  49. Engage with other writers. Clap and comment where appropriate.
  50. Building a writing career is like building a house. It takes planning and time.
  51. Read the curation rules if you want your articles to be curated.
  52. It takes work to earn a living writing. It’s not a get-rich-quick program.
  53. Writing platforms are always changing. Don’t complain. Adapt.
  54. Adapt or die.
  55. It’s possible to make $19,000 from one story. It probably won’t happen for you or me though. It’s also possible to win the lottery jackpot.
  56. Get outside and live your life. You won’t be able to write amazing stories if you don’t have life experience.
  57. Don’t neglect family and friends. Family and friends > writing.
  58. When the going gets tough, double down. Don’t give up.
  59. Check your stats to see what’s working and what’s not. Adjust your strategy based on what you find.
  60. Have a strategy. Don’t just blindly write whatever pops into your head. I plead guilty. I have vowed to change my ways.
  61. Quality matters. Aim for quality in your work.
  62. Sometimes quality doesn’t matter.
  63. Writing is full of contradictions.
  64. It’s a numbers game. The more you publish, the greater your chance of success.
  65. Don’t misinterpret what other writers say. I didn’t say you should write low-quality nonsense.
  66. Don’t make excuses. If you want to become a successful writer, you need to make it a priority in your life.
  67. Don’t get jealous of other writers that are succeeding. Get inspired. Learn from them.
  68. Take a writing course or two. Or three. Or four. I just paid $597 for my second course. Apply yourself and they should pay for themselves.
  69. Get a writing mentor if you can.
  70. Don’t stress if your stories aren’t getting curated. Non-curated stories also earn money.
  71. Eat well. Sleep well. Exercise. Taking care of your body helps you write better.
  72. Keep a notepad handy to write down story ideas. I can guarantee you’ll forget them if you don’t write them down.
  73. Don’t be a perfectionist. There is no such thing as a perfect story.
  74. Write a mixture of short, medium, and long articles. See which works best for both you and your readers.
  75. Don’t write about topics you hate. You will end up hating writing.
  76. Don’t let other writers tell you what to write about. Many will try.
  77. You can earn a great income as a writer if you take the time to learn your craft.
  78. Writing is fun.
  79. It’s easy to become a Top Writer on Medium.
  80. Choose great images for your stories.
  81. The more your write, the better you’ll get.
  82. How do you become a great writer? Practice, practice, practice.
  83. An average writer can earn money writing. You don’t need to be an expert.

Let me know the favorite lessons you’ve learned so far.

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