It’s only an assumption but I think it’s a calculation of different things. I’ve been writing every day on Medium for a year. I’m a top writer in eleven different categories and that’s gained attention.

What I really hope it is: If you’ve read my stories then you know I’m personable. I don’t write listicles, or how to articles, or this is what you need to do to be a better writer or be a better anything for that matter. I write as if I’m an open book. I say the things I believe we all feel at times but often don’t express it. What most people consider vulnerable, I consider confidence.

My Crazy Cat Lady Photoblog has helped, for sure. Who doesn’t like cats? I do or I wouldn’t have eight of them.

In May I started the Hopes and Dreams for Our Future publication on Medium because I want to develop a stronger relationship with other writers. I believe everyone can learn something from each other. There’s no such thing as competition when it comes to writing. We all have our own stories to tell. I want to read those stories. In three months we’re up to almost 4000 followers. That’s a huge accomplishment for all of our writers.

Most importantly, I love engaging with my readers. I value each interaction. I’m responsive. I want to have dialog. I appreciate those that take their time to read my stories. It means a great deal to me and so does my relationship with them.

Unfortunately writing for free on Medium doesn’t pay my bills, as with every other writer that writes on Medium. I get paid to publish stories in magazines and newspapers but I don’t enjoy it and genuinely don’t want to do it. It sounds selfish but I want to write the stories I want to write for all the above reasons. I don’t want to be told what to write in order to eat. I started a Patreon with the hope my readers will support me in continuing to do what I love.

Also, I don’t view my writing as solely mine. My stories are a part of my readers as much as they’re a part of me. I want to take things to the next level and Medium doesn’t offer that opportunity. Yes, I will continue to write on Medium every day but I also want to expand my community of readers with podcasts, open discussions, possibly a book club, share videos and photos so they can be a part of my life. I’m a writer but even more so I’m a person.

I’m currently trying out publishing Medium Members only stories but the truth is, that’ll probably only be enough money every month to fill my gas tank. I’m not really comfortable with it either. All of my readers don’t have a Medium membership so I’m also posting stories on my Patreon open to the public. Patrons will have access to everything else even for just $5 a month. The money isn’t because I’m greedy. It’s because my writing needs to sustain itself. I take what I do seriously and want to have the ability to keep doing it.

I do have a large following, but that doesn’t mean they’re all reading my work. If I were to have even just 15% of my following contribute $5 a month I would reach beyond my goal, but until the happens, I’ll have to be everywhere.

Newspaper reporter in Eastern Iowa. The views expressed are mine alone.

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