So I’ve done my research. I’ve fleshed out my draft. I’ve spent the time finalizing my piece elevating it from its draft stage.
I kind of want to go ahead and publish it.
I think it’s pretty good.
Yes, I definitely like it… my cursor is sliding towards the publish button.
Wait! cries the knot in my stomach that remembers the rejections and all those Not Distributed messages at the top of my stats pages.
Medium readers like mid-length, 6–12 minutes articles I believe is the going average, but there’s also a huge audience for short pieces and long pieces.
When my piece passes the seven minute mark I ask myself:
Is this just one article?
Op-Ed special interest pieces make sense as longer reads, but a lot of my writing is great for four to nine minute works of easy readability and digestible takeaways.
I follow the lead of top writers and let information-driven pieces be short and simple. I invite vivid thorough stories and my special interest pieces to bulk out and I bask in the editing of those for a lot longer.
I’m always curious — who am I writing to? What’s my angle? Where does this come from in me? Why do I care? Where do I want this to go? Who do I want to be kind of like with this piece? Would I want them to read it?
If I’d start my writing career from scratch now, the first thing I’d do would be to carefully pick three to five idols and analyze their work in-depth.
— Sinem Günel, Medium Top Writer
Below is a roughly chronological list of refining points I compiled after studying with numerous writers and reading tons of How to succeed on Medium posts.
Here is my editing checklist for anything I write these days.
First of All
Are you breaking any Medium rules?
Cut that out.
Medium says, No:
Stories that promote intolerance or…