There’s a plague running rampant across Medium. The plague was created by the King and is run by the Lords of his land. The Lords of this land eat from the dirtied palms of those kept in a perpetual state of serfdom; forever submitting their hard work to their Lord sat atop a carefully trimmed steed, who callously rejects the fruits of their labor.
How could they accept? They are drowned in the efforts of their slaves. Their choice is not between ‘this and that’, but between ‘this and that’ a thousand times over. You’d have to be a special kind of stupid to believe that the editors of P.S. I Love You, Better Marketing, or even The Partnered Pen read each and every submission. Especially yours.
These editors, so fattened by the wealth of submissions on this site have no opportunity to read your piece. No matter how good-intentioned they may try to be, the best they could offer your piece is a quick skim. A ‘fuck and chuck’, as the frat bros from my college days used to call it.
Editors do not want to receive your piece. They want to receive articles from Gary Vaynerchuk, Tim O'Reilly, Jason Fried, or fucking Hillary Clinton for God’s sake. They do not want to read your piece.
If you are lucky enough to get published, CONGRATS! You are nothing more than filler. Your article, no matter how much time you spent writing it, is meant to fill a gap in production from the writers on this site whose influence will forever outweigh yours.
You are filler. Fluff. The void between articles submitted by the kings and queens of this site.
Do I want you to quit writing? Hell no. I am willing to bet that you are a far better writer than M.G. Siegler or Biz Stone. What you lack is a funny thing called ‘reach’, or ‘influence’. You’re like me. You’re a little guy, gal, or anything in between or outside.
You probably have more than a few run-on sentences, and I am willing to bet you have not won a writing competition not run by your high school’s English teacher.
And that is okay.
Publications on this site are nothing more than popularity contests run by the cool kids. We aren’t the cool kids. I don’t know what you remember about grade school, but popularity had very little to do with the overall quality of being.
Let me leave you with my shitty advice:
- Never quit writing.
- Never censor yourself.
- Don’t judge your writing through the eyes of others.
- Be honest to yourself and your readers.
- There are no rules. Just write.
As always, there are plenty of exceptions. Dr Mehmet Yildiz is a primary example, as are the editors over at Writer’s Blokke. The large publications do not give a single fuck about you or your well-being. They exist to eat their own profits. If you feel inclined to submit to a publication, then submit to small, hungry publications. They are more than willing to carefully read through your piece and help you grow as a writer.
“Hopefully, we can work and peer-review rather than criticize like we are trying to get published in the Wall Street Journal.”
Thank you for the inspiration, Kemp.