career

Views, Reads & Fans

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Just a brief introduction so you know where I am coming from.

1. I am a self-published author of a small book based on little known characters from the Bible. This was published through Amazon Createspace a little over a year ago. While it has gotten some traction, it is not anywhere near where I would like it to be. Of course, like any author, it would be nice to see it on a Best Seller List. One day, maybe that will come for something I write.

2. I was told about Medium in the Spring of 2018. I looked at it a few times, decided it might be a little too difficult or time-consuming to deal with, and kept shoving it to a back burner of my writing stove.

3. I have owned and designed my own websites in the past, and have been blogging for over 12 years. At one point, one of the sites I owned was regularly seeing about 3–4,000 unique visitors a day which some days seeing surges in excess of 8–10,000 unique visitors.

4. However, like many writers, it is easy to get discouraged. I got tired of trying to find more contributors and editors who would be willing to share the same passion that I did for the blogs. There are still a couple of people who have written recently on at least one of my blogs and I am very thankful for their contributions. So, the blog posts grew less and so did the readership.

That brings me to July 2018 where all four of these points come together.

I took a chance that somebody would be interested in reading my blogs, my stories, my poems, my Haiku, or my whatever I wanted to share. Much of what I wrote at the beginning was simply a response to Writing Prompts with a Facebook group called Warrior Writers (sadly, no longer in existence).

Then, I was reminded about something that I had forgotten about.

MEDIUM!

$5.00 a month? Are you kidding me? That is nothing. I spend more than that on each trip to the local coffee shop to get a raspberry white chocolate frappe. Why not?

Not one to start off with freebies, I decided to take the plunge and buy into the Medium Partnership Program. My ONLY goal was twofold. 1) To see if somebody liked my writing. 2) To eventually make enough money to pay for my monthly subscription of $5.00.

Here is what has happened.

July — 1 story

123 views

71 reads

24 fans

Earned: (Drum roll, please — — $0.00)

Not one to quit easily, I thought, well, I will give it another month or two.

August — 6 stories

432 views

265 reads

105 fans

Earned for August: (Another drum roll, please — — $0.19)

Part of the problem was that I had not figured out how to put stories behind the paywall. I was frustrated to say the least. However, I figured it out the first of September and things began to change.

September — 4 stories

488 views

347 reads

58 fans

Earned for September: $4.66

I will admit that I did a little jig. Told a couple of friends. Bragged about it to my family and signed my wife, Violet, up to write and make money. Barely enough to pay off my subscription, but I had done it.

I was on Cloud 9 and thought to myself, “Wow, only 4 stories and made over my goal!” However, another side of my brain said, “Don’t count chickens before they hatch!”

So, I set a lofty goal of making at least $10.00 in one month.

October — 12 stories

601 views

419 reads

118 fans

Earned for October: $12.39

Amazing! I have no doubt that Mark CAN make money off of what he writes. On to the next month.

November — 15 stories

1195 views

791 reads

232 fans

Earned for November: $9.88

When I received the total, I was disappointed, but still pleased that I was over the $5 subscription amount. So, on to writing in December and thinking that maybe I could take this a little more seriously.

December — 17 stories

4071 views

3103 reads

451 fans

Earned for December: $52.51

What??!! I made enough to take out the family for a celebratory meal. Ok, maybe it was just Denny’s, but this was huge to me. My 12-year-old girls ask my wife and I, as well as my son, Trenton, who has also started writing, how much we make EVERY Wednesday. They are excited and help to keep us encouraged.

For January 2019, I decided that I needed to step up my game and see what difference it makes. My goal is to write at least one story or article for every single day. I am ahead of my goals as I have seen four stories published as of today, January 4th, and I have three stories ready to go for the next few days.

Each month I read the newsletter that comes out and read that only about 9.1% of all writers make more than $100. I determined in November (and told my family) that my goal is to be one of those in the 9.1%. That means that approximately only 1 in 10 will earn enough to pay for a nice meal. This will be me soon, maybe even in January.

All of this to say that if I can write and make money, then you can do so as well! Write about what you love and what excites you. Pay for the Medium Partner Program. Ask to join and write for publications you like.

Celebrate your successes! I look forward to seeing where I am at in 6 months and then as we close out 2019.

Join me!

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My First Interview

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I had the privilege of being interviewed by Parker J Cole of “Write Stuff.”  This was my first interview about my book “Heroes of Courage.”  I also had the honor of being able to speak about Liberia which is still very close to my heart.