Tag Archives: writer


Hawk Logo_JAJ0561by Mark T. Wayne

“Quit talking business! This is important!” A shocking pronouncement coming from one’s employer! I go mum. We sit behind thick glass, watching the Chicago Blackhawks clobber the Anaheim Ducks in the final game of the series. The Hawks will win this game and go on to the coveted Stanley Cup. That is correct, sir—an opportunity for a third championship in just a few years! Continue reading HAWKS

Don’t Be a Writer

You’ll be naked. Not in the literal sense, where a body can be perfected and angles can be utilized and lighting can negate imperfections. It won’t be your legs or ass or chest or stomach on display for strangers to judge and criticize, want or hate. No, it’ll be the thoughts that tremble in buried synapses and cower behind popular opinions. Your soul will be penned behind syllables, dotted with insecurities and crossed with a faltering personality. You’ll be spread open on paper and inspected on computer screens and judged by those who sit comfortably on thrones of anonymity.

You’ll be labeled. You’ll have subjected a population to the woven fibers of your existence and they will inevitably need to know exactly what it is you are. You must be easily definable and properly marked and quickly recognizable, fitting perfectly in their filing cabinet of understanding. If you write about rape, you’ll be a feminist. If you write about shades of lipstick, you’ll be a weak traditionalist. If you write about a woman’s flaws, you’ll be a misogynist. If you write about a horrible experience on a city bus, you’ll be a privileged bitch.
You’ll be poor. You’ll be published with no pay and write poetry on empty pockets and seek comments instead of checks. You’ll wash your hair with hand soap when you can’t afford shampoo, work three jobs to continue living in a matchbox apartment and live on more sodium-infused microwavables than believed humanly possible.
You’ll sell clothes for bills and presents for rent and pride for a seemingly unreachable dream.
You’ll be terrifying. Not in a way that sends children under beds or brings covers up to petrified faces. No, it’s your grasp of the English language that will be threatening. Ex-boyfriends will tremble at the thought of what you may or may not type and ex-best friends will cringe when their reflection is found in the final sentences of your recollection. Romantic interests will be hesitant and family members will be uneasy; and strangers will be weary.
When you’ve built a platform from pages of a tattered past, the ones who glued it all together will fear their own exposure.
You’ll be trapped. Fleeting sentences and rhythmic lines will swirl around a never-ending cognition so fluid; you’ll spend the majority of your existence chasing after it. You’ll live your life one firing thought after the other, racing to the nearest computer or digging for the closest pen in the feeble hope it will all be captured perfectly.
You’ll be a slave to the metaphors and similes and alliterations that breathe life into the creative fingertips that formed them.

However, if you insist. If you believe yourself capable of surviving public nudity and blind judgment. If petrified loved ones and a disordered mind do not deter you. Write. Write endlessly and limitlessly and without fear. Write on a stained table napkin or a sealed love letter or a tattered picture. Just write. Do not bind your thoughts to your veins or trap descriptions behind your ribs. There are countless reasons to forgo the delicate pain of being a writer, yet infinitely more reasons to ignore them.

Written by

Marketing Director. Columnist for @nqontheb. Freelance Writer for Hush Magazine Thought Catalog & The Seattle Times. Sports Enthusiast. Whiskey-Drinking Pro.

Published November 12, 2013


Supporting great writing on Medium

TV Series in Media Center
TV Series in Media Center (Photo credit: Bart Naus)



The most frequently asked question I get when I talk to professional writers about contributing to Medium is, “What is Medium?”

Next up: “Do you pay?” and “How much?”

Ev has some great answers to question number one here, here, and here.

Sharp-eyed readers may have already noticed an answer to question number two in a November post from Ev. (A: Sometimes.)

In recent weeks, we’ve started to put this plan into action, so it’s a good time to explain more fully what we’ve been doing and why.

What we’ve been doing is paying some contributors at competitive freelance rates. As for why: Our goal is to make Medium the best platform possible for everyone to share great ideas or stories. This should certainly include those whose profession is doing so.

In other words, we need to build a sustainable business that provides writers a variety of rewards — from intellectual growth to influence to, at times, money. We’re not there yet, but we figure we should start experimenting sooner rather than later. This effort encompasses a tiny percentage of Medium content today, but, depending on what we discover, it may grow or change over time.

Until then, here’s where things stand:

Q: Why is Medium paying writers?

A: One of our long-term goals is to bring in readers to enjoy content of all kinds, whether commissioned or not; great commissioned writing will help attract those readers. One of our other long-term goals is to create sustainable models to support writers. Right now, as we are learning more about what works on Medium and what doesn’t, we are funding some content ourselves.

Q: Who is getting paid?

A: Our editorial team is contracting with a few people to contribute one-off articles and ongoing columns.

Q: How do I get paid?

A: We are accepting pitches from experienced professional magazine writers for reported features and investigative articles. To be considered, email us at pitches@medium.com.

Q: How much are you paying?

A: Competitive, negotiable freelance rates.






Why writing for a living is a terrible idea

This is not the romance you are looking for


Writing for a living fucking sucks.

Seriously, writing is among the most overly-romanticised things you can do with your life. Right up there with being an astronaut, or charity work.

Everyone is a writer. And everyone a critic. You’re the bottom of the food chain.

The pay is lousy – if there is pay – and unless you’re very lucky, you don’t get any respect until you’re dead.

You can’t stand your own work. Most of your ideas have either been done before or are just awful.

You spend your life inside your own head, questioning everything, even your own questions. Your days are filled with doubt, self-loathing and anger. You probably hate yourself, and most of humanity.

“Boo-fucking-hoo” people say when you’re blocked.

“They’re just words, how hard can it be.”


No-one understands you, except other writers. And they all hate you anyway because you’re a fucking asshole.

It takes years to hone your craft. Years of ritual self-abuse, mental flagellation and misery.

By this time if you’re not an alcoholic, then your heart just isn’t in it. And if you’re an alcoholic then your writing won’t be worth shit.

Catch-22, bitches.

On TV and in movies writers live the life. They have lake house retreats and warehouse apartments in Manhattan and good teeth.

Or, in the case of Hank Moody from Californication, they have endless sex with a revolving roster of perky-breasted young women eager to fuck an alcoholic writer who never actually seems to write anything.

(Love you, Hank!)

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...
Image via CrunchBase

No, writing is not romantic.

Writing isn’t living in a lake house six months a year. Writing isn’t fucking groupies. It isn’t paying the rent on time.

Writing is cry-wanking to screen-grabs of perky-breasted young actresses in the dim light of your rat-infested one-bedroom apartment.

Writing is refusing to leaving the house for weeks and saying no to any misguided invites to socialise.

Writing is sitting at the same fucking desk every day to be taunted by a blinking cursor and your own crippling inadequacy.

Writing is tearing your soul out and arranging it on paper for others to consume and judge.

Writing is asking for more every time someone pulls your heart out through your asshole in the name of “constructive” criticism.

If you want romance, have an affair. It’s cheaper and less soul destroying.

If you can afford the lake house, you’re not a writer; you’re a lawyer with a hobby.

Writing is hard. It is painful. And it is thankless.

Is it really worth it?

Yes. It’s the best job in the world.

Find me on Twitter.


Further Reading

Why writing is the best job in the world


An elevator pitch to the unconverted

Cut the bullshit and make time to write


At the top of the list of bullshit that writers tell themselves (along with ‘my main character is nothing like me’, and ‘I’m in this for…



Written by

Not drunk enough to write well. This is the best I can do sober.



Read, Write too…

Bamurange in Writers on Writing


I love reading, in a moderate kind of way, I’m not a total bookworm, but there are some books and articles online worth a read. Some will have you searching for more of their work or similar styles. Somehow, you’re engulfed and captivated because there are words that describe some of your feelings and thoughts.

Nothing Feels Good
Nothing Feels Good (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Every time I read, it feels like meeting someone for the first time, the further you read, the more you get curious. In this way, whether you are aware of it or not, there’s a particular impact the content is having on you.You find certain quotes imprinted on your mind that you can’t wait to share] with your friends. Some sentences relieve because all of a sudden it feels like you’ve found an answer to a question you’ve been asking yourself for a very long time.

I believe that reading drives one to sit down and try to write their own stories,helping keep memories, discovering more about who they really are and what they are capable of. Setting goals and accomplishing them.Remember to share. Written material is priceless, especially now that we have the luxury of the internet platform, only being a link away.Read and write, you’ll find answers to most things you always wonder about.

Share too!

Read more  – > https://medium.com/writers-on-writing/f530a4dcc91f



Tighten Up Your Writing

Start reading your travel pieces with an editor’s eye

Last week, soon after word spread about the death of the novelist and screenwriter Elmore Leonard, his clever, useful 10 Rules for Writing went viral, gaining a whole new group of fans and followers.

It made me think more deeply about the things I’ve learned from editing portions of hundreds of guidebooks, and commissioning and editing lots of other articles — both good and bad.

I can’t tell you how to get to the good that easily, but I can help you ferret out some of the bad.

Eliminate Empty Words

If you find yourself using the same few adjectives and phrases to describe places, see if you can figure out why that is. Do you not have enough information about them? Do they seem a little over-worthy and dull? Try to figure out the issue and address it —don’t just wallpaper over gaps by using generic words.

To get a broader sense of the sorts of words I’m talking about, I asked some friends and travel editors and writers what sorts of over-used words and phrases bug them — the terms they’d take the most pleasure in editing out. See the notes to the right for a sample, and feel free to add your own.

Read more – > https://medium.com/estimated-time-of-arrival/e13eea44d457


Write better together

How community notes can make you a better writer

Forget the idea that great writers don’t need help. Learn how to listen to your readers and make changes before your text is too cooked to reshape.

Take a gander at this mark-up of Raymond Carver’s What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.

Does the influence of Gordon Lish (Carver’s editor and friend) make Carver a lesser writer? No. Nope. Not at all. Sure, their story is complicated, but Carver is far better, not worse, for getting help.

The lesser writer refuses help.

Something marvelous happens when you ask for notes—you get to meet the people on the other end of your text while you still have a chance to make it better.

Ask early, while your post is still a draft, rather than hoping the notes will somehow start flowing after you publish. Bring your reader along as a co-conspirator and a companion, not as a consumer of your ideas, but as the only chance those ideas have to live on in the minds of others.

Remember the final pages of Franny and Zooey? About caring for the audience? It is quite something when the audience cares back and you discover that through their intellectual (and emotional) comity your text has a shot at an extended life. Without a reader, there is no writer.

read more -> https://medium.com/design-story/5e0046e86acb


Am I Write?

Writing oneself into awakening



Coming to terms with being a writer has been surprisingly difficult. I should introduce myself: The most important thing to know about me is that I have “a massive inferiority complex.” I have extinguished many an idea before the flame ignited the wick.


That and I have fancied myself since childhood a writer of fiction. I have created umpteen plots in both in our less than perfect present and various dystopic futures no better than our current reality but none have I allowed myself the freedom to fully explore. Yet.


I’ve stood in my own way fearing that my characters are too specific. But how can that be? Is each individual person not unique? I believe I may have feared that my audience may read my characters as I intended and perhaps I was uncomfortable with the vulnerability of speaking plainly if semi-disguised in the voice of another.


Writer Wordart
Writer Wordart (Photo credit: MarkGregory007)


I have thought myself a failure to become this thing I have imagined of myself since Kindergarten when I wrote my first story about a squirrel and a tree (which I also illustrated!). But—I recently had a revelation that was somewhat embarassing for a professed lover of words: I have been down on myself for not being a ‘writer’ when in actuality it’s a novelist that I am not; AND, I am okay with that.


My thoughts I have been chronicling for over ten years in a dozen plus Moleskines, various online blogs, emails and letters.


I write! I’m a writer!




Is that sufficient in the modern age of instant access, instant sharing? Is that enough for me? I’m afraid it isn’t. Least of all for my ego. For someone who fears inadequacy I have the most painful desire for validation that can come only via public comparison.


read more -> https://medium.com/what-i-learned-today/bcee2db163fe



Pay For The Writing You Read

As I try to become a writer I pause to think about how I consume and pay for the writing I enjoy


Man thinking on a train journey.
Man thinking on a train journey. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I pay for the media I consume, especially what I don’t pay, and while I have thought about all media in general, I’m especially thinking about the writing I read, and I think about it even more often, and more deeply, as I learn about how writers get paid today and when I wonder how I too, might get paid as a writer.


I remember in college one time at a party having a discussion about the ethics of pirating music online. One woman said it was the same as stealing and in response I conjured my techie and hacker ethos, something which used to be very central to me: I pointed out that copying or downloading music files from someone wasn’t the same as stealing something physical like a car, because if I copy files, the person I copied them from still has their copy but if I steal someone’s car, they no longer have a car. My roommate who had previously expressed an interest in becoming a lawyer appreciated this point. It was a not so subtle distinction that the woman’s moral self-righteousness didn’t allow for and it compelled me at the time and still compels me to this day.


But today as I look around at how the digital world has seemingly muddied the waters in discerning the value of creative output – with physical copies no longer required for the transfer of written words, or music, or video – I wonder how I ever let the idea that I wasn’t stealing something provide comfort to me in enjoying something without reciprocating monetarily, or in any way whatsoever. I provided no money, I provided no thanks, I just consumed and moved on.


read more -> https://medium.com/i-m-h-o/d4184f91ab0c



Why writing is the best job in the world

An elevator pitch to the unconverted

Elevator Pitch: Per Schorling (Geveko ITS)
Elevator Pitch: Per Schorling (Geveko ITS) (Photo credit: Citymart.com)


Writing is the fucking best.

Seriously, if you’re underworked, overpaid, and generally satisfied with the direction your life has taken, then you’re doing it wrong.

It’s time to wake up, snort the coffee grounds, go back to sleep, get up around 3pm and eat baked cheese snacks for breakfast, achiever.

As a writer, abstract concepts such as work and happiness will no longer be a concern. You’ll be able to wallow in the fetid pool of your own neuroses as long as you like, all from the comfort of your own bed.

Burdened under the weight of your ample self-confidence? Not any more, fuck face! With writing, aggravating conditions such as confidence and esteem are a thing of the past.

Fed up with showering twice a day? Or more than once a week? More importantly — are you fed up of wearing pants? As long as the question isn’t ‘money’, writing is the answer, person.

Read more -> https://medium.com/writers-on-writing/c8b43d3e7cdb