With this, it’s been 2 months of Medium for me

I have been writing for 2 months now. It requires as much of discipline as it takes to work out regularly.

I was feeling lazy today. Add to that the fact that I had a lot of work to take care of — both on a personal as well as a professional level — I really did not think I would be able to write today. And then I looked at the date on my phone, and it hit me — 2 months.

I started writing — religiously — on April 9. So as soon as I hit publish on this story, I would have been writing for 2 months now. Whew! We are halfway there.

CONTEXTI started writing to imbibe some discipline in my life. 1 Quora answer and a story on medium. Every single day. Before the clock reads 9:30am. It started as an experiment, with a timeframe of 16 weeks. Since today marks completion of 2 months → let’s call it 8 weeks.

So what all has happened in this time:

  • I don’t think I have taken a break. There have been days when I have just winged it, but yeah — haven’t taken breaks.
  • Have written more than the set target a couple of times.
  • Have written some crazy shit (read worthless) once or twice (including this one).
  • There have been a few pieces that I felt happy about. One on chatbot, another one on advice on sending me a LinkedIn message, then the most recent — diversity in (tech) companies.
  • Sometimes the content doesn’t get published when I would like it to. Publications do have their own massive inflow to deal with.
  • Have been waking up at 6:00am every day. Like clockwork.

I count this one as a huge win. For someone who used to wake up between 10:00am — 11:00am, I would have never thought I would be able to stick with this routine. There have actually been more than a couple of days when I have woken up between 5:00 — 5:30am (without the aid of an alarm clock). A couple of times I have missed it and woke up around 7:00am as well. Today, I woke up at 4:00am. Now that’s just disturbing!

  • I am able to get a lot of work done by the time its 11am. Feels both strange/weird and good at the same time.
  • I started with around 50 followers on Medium. Today, I have close to 950. And this is purely organic.

I did not start writing to amass a follower base. As I have mentioned earlier, this was an exercise purely selfish in nature, and being done just for myself. The reason I highlight this is to show how powerful Medium’s own discovery engine is. I haven’t been promoting my content — not even on social media. So every single view or follower that I have been getting has been primarily because of two things — (1) Medium’s tag based discovery engine, (2) My stories on various publications. Most noteworthy being Hackernoon by David Smooke (I think I have been submitting at least 1 story on Hackernoon every week). Few points to clarify:

  1. I have posted two full articles on LinkedIn — with links to those stories on Medium (citing originally published on….).
  2. I can’t be sure, but I think I may have posted the link for the first couple of stories on my twitter handle. If I did, I stopped in the first week itself
  3. I did use to retweet any tweets about my stories. Stopped that as well. Now I just send a personal response thanking them for the share.
  • I have been a top writer for 7 different tags, and in the process identified a limitation that Medium imposes on its writers. I’ll explain below. (Someone else may have discovered it ages back, it was new to me)

TOP-WRITER RESTRICTION ON MEDIUM

Just the way you can add up to 5 different tags for your story, your profile will show up to 5 different tags ONLY, for which you are in the top-writer list.

At one point or the other, I have been a top writer for 7 different tags — Finance, Ideas, Venture Capital, Business, Advice, Startup, Entrepreneurship. Right now, my profile shows 5 of them, and that is how I came across the restriction of Medium’s system.

When ‘Entrepreneurship’ got taken off my profile, I could understand that. I wasn’t high up enough in that list. So, all good! But when I ‘Startup’ got taken off, that was a surprise. I was quite high up in that list. Granted, I may not have written quite a lot on that topic recently, but from there to out of the top-50? That seemed a stretch. So I decided to look up the top-writers list for Startup. And there I was. Bumped down by quite a few layers, but still very much in the list.

And once I saw that, I decided to check up on Entrepreneurship as well. And there I was, looking all pretty.

Ev Williams — You have cheated me!

To be honest, I do think it is probably a good thing. Your profile remains clean — just like the way Medium has always kept it everywhere else on their interface. But it was new, and I am lazy today, so sharing this tidbit helps me pad up this story.

TIME FOR SOME STATS

*Actual count for responses on other stories has been 38, but 9 of them got converted to a larger format — making them a full fledged story on their own.
9 of these 105 were published before April 9.

TRAFFIC STATS

Bottom line? Content rules!

So, go ahead. Create some content!

Relevant. Contextual. Engaging. Entertaining. Informative.

One of the best responses I have ever received. Thanks Lori Parker. Although the response overall was confusing. (source)
NEXT TWO WEEKSThe next two weeks are going to be tough. I have some family affairs and functions to tend to, and I can't be sure of how my schedule is going to look like. There are promises of having enough on my plate to keep me on my feet the whole time. I don't know if that is just a scare tactic or an indication of how it is going to be.As much as possible, I will try adhering to the schedule. If not, I do have a cache of 8 cheat days that I can encash. (When starting this endeavour, I had allowed myself 1 cheat day each week. Wasn't really sure if I will be able to stick to the routine or not, so had decided to give myself some wiggle room.)So far I haven't used any cheat days, so I am sitting on a cache full of them. But. As much as possible, I would like to see it remain unused. We'll see. :-)

That’s it for today. See you tomorrow.

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Abhishek Anand

Abhishek Anand

Helping businesses grow 10x faster, and scale efficiently. Top Writer — Quora, Medium. Drop in a line if you’d like help with yours. mail@abyshake.com