Why are writers constantly writing the same articles over and over again?

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This morning I read a piece about how a writer finally made $100 bucks in a month after a year of trying. One hundred bucks. This is worth writing an article about? It’s not, and this stuff pollutes the reader experience. There are a million things to write about and we still get a constant stream of this ultra lightweight stuff.

I’m not a fan of Western philosophy, aka ‘navel-gazing’, the attempt to explain life intellectually and logically. Life is either supremely logical or completely illogical. Zen would say it is both, simultaneously. But whatever view you espouse, we can’t…

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He was one of those Renaissance men, in spite of his flaws

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Remarkable humans almost always have serious flaws, and Winston Churchill was a truly remarkable person with a remarkable life. Despite the stories of anti-semitism and his love of colonialism, both normal among the British aristocracy at the time, he had many positive accomplishments beyond saving Britain from the Nazis.

Born the number two son (his older brother got the dukedom and the enormous palace), he had to constantly strive to be admired by his distant parents. …

I’m not obsessed. Really.

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I just happen to be interested in data and what it tells me so far. But until I had published over three hundred articles, I didn’t have enough to draw any conclusions. But even these observations are just speculation and rumor.

One: writers think too much about money

This one is simple. I wrote a piece complaining about the constant stream of get rich quick articles and the responses were universally in agreement with me. Readers want something interesting, provocative, or educational. And most are not writers.

Two: sharing on social media does not generate dollars

Why? Because readers on Facebook, Twitter, and others are unlikely to be paying Medium subscribers and they are the ones…

Early successes are just dumb luck

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I am on a crusade against the idea that there is a ‘secret sauce’ that successful people know about. Anyone who has had long term success will tell you that any early gains were pure luck, being in the right place at the right time, but by accident. But before I get into it, what exactly is success?

The concept changes drastically as you get more experienced

The most successful people I know embrace the idea of being an eternal beginner. This state of mind does not assume any superior knowledge or experience. …

Welcome to the real world

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Anyone who has launched a blog knows it is a lot harder than it looks, especially when compared to Twitter. It actually requires work and patience. So the failure of a prominent disgraced former President’s little blog comes as no surprise.

Instant gratification is the territory of spoiled children, not adults. Grownups know that you have to build things from scratch to create something that endures and grows. You have to do the work. …

I’m talking about 80,000+ words

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I recently read a piece about how you can string together a bunch of articles and create a book. Their definition was that 20,000 words was a ‘book’. It is not and there is a good reason why this bothered me.

Structuring a book-length story, memoir, or advice book is a completely different writing experience, one I think every would-be writer should take on. It requires changing the arc of your story, varying pacing, and, contrarily, being minimalist in your sentences while going into enough detail to create a world.

A world a reader can immerse themselves in.

Yes, you…

Do I cease to exist?

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Readers. As a writer and a reader I have to periodically ask myself why I do what I do. Why this drive to tell a story, relate an experience, find an audience? What am I, and all the others, trying to accomplish?

When I ask myself these questions I immediately know the answer. But before I get into that I have to note that an enormous amount of writing is not intended to be read. Things like personal journals, places where writing is a way of working things out, things that are not intended for consumption by others.

I do…

You’re dealing with a massively insecure human

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When anyone starts talking about their accomplishments, a red flag goes up for me. It’s fine to discuss your work and the challenges you face, but bragging or trying to impress others is almost always a sign of a very insecure person. Someone who is not comfortable in their own skin.

The Alpha Male reference in the title really threw me. He was dating a woman and actually described himself that way. And it killed the date, just like that.

I’ve started dating a little after the year of nothing that was Covid. The people I meet seem really open…

If you’re a writer, any writer, you’ll learn something every time

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“Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter– tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther…and one fine morning–

So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Those words end one of the finest books written in English and are themselves iconic, perfectly mirroring the American desire to find an idyllic past that never existed. …

You can’t learn the secrets in an article, or even a book, because they are secrets

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There is a myth that is shared among writers here, many of whom are young and inexperienced. They’re in a great hurry to make the money, build the following, and move up the writer food chain. And they share the ‘secrets’ to these things, except…they don’t actually know them.

LeGuin made the comment above after a long career as a groundbreaking science fiction and fantasy writer that saw her revered by her peers and readers. …


Former software marketer. Former musician. Writer, nine non-fiction books, two novels, Buddhist, train lover. Amateur cook, lover of life most of the time!

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