Writing Challenge: What Happens When You Read, Respond, Repeat for 30 Days
What my Medium metrics for the past 30 days show
Last month, I set myself this Medium writing challenge:
Respond / comment on 10 Medium articles every day for the next 30 days, on average.
Here are my takeaways and reflections.
How my stats changed
Here are my views, reads, followers, fans, and % of stories curated over the 30 days preceding this challenge:
Created by author on Canva
And here are my stats for the past 30 days:
Created by author on Canva
The only real conclusion I can reach about my stats is this:
My numbers are moving in the right direction!
And this is encouraging enough for me because I’m thoroughly learning from and enjoying my Medium journey.
I wish I could deliver an earth-shattering insight.
I could lie to myself (and you)and say that all my stories are getting lots more views and reads, as evidenced by my reads and views going up even though I published fewer stories this month than last (12 vs 17). The real reason for this, though, is just this one article that went minimally viral:
What Does It Even Mean to Be a Person of Color?
It depends, in some measure, on where you come from
What I like and what’s most popular are weakly correlated.
I sort of knew this before and this challenge confirmed it. There are many writers I love on Medium who aren’t too popular. There are stories I find immensely inspiring and beautifully written with two-digit clap counts.
It’ll be interesting to see how popular these writers become; that is, what the algorithm says about them.
The operative word for me is slow.
I’m a slow reader. It takes me nearly forever to read and comment on 10 articles. First, I can only respond if I have something to say, so responding to 10 articles involved reading more than 10. Second, I can read-skim if I’m not responding, but responding required real reading.
My growth on Medium is slow too — and steady. This third month of analysis confirms it. I’ll never be an overnight Medium star.
Which is fine with me, and which, I hope, makes me more relatable to the vast majority of writers here.
I’m still the rule, not the exception.
If I ever make $100 here, like only 5% of Medium writers do, I’ll let you know. One penny beyond that, I won’t. Not that I fear making anyone feel bad they’re the rule — I don’t. It’s just that how much money I make is not a topic I like to write about.
Also, should a miracle happen, like gaining 3,639 followers a day 10 days in a row, I won’t write about it. There are plenty of others who do and I thank them because they’re helpful.
But I’m here for the slow-and-steady-wins-the race type of people.
Don’t get me wrong though. I’d love 149K views, 148K reads and 36K followers in 10 days’ time! I just won’t write about it.
My next challenge
The length of my next writing challenge has been inspired by Trista Ainsworth. It will be a 100-day challenge, and it goes like this:
To journal every single day for 100 consecutive days.
I’m excited because I’ve never journaled longer than two days in a row.
Also, the end of this challenge will coincide with the end of my first year on Medium. (I don’t count my first 9 months because over those months I published just 6 articles, and didn’t really pay attention to the platform.)
So, until then, happy reading, writing and pondering.