The World Doesn’t Stop When You’re in Curation Azkaban

“Wanted Wizard” (Designed by author via PhotoFunia)

I didn’t know curation jail was a thing until I started seeing stories about it all over my Medium newsfeed. I’ve read such posts from Brian Rowe, Ryan Justin, T.S. Johnson, and Jason Deane.

Next thing I know, I’ve discovered I was in curation Azkaban too. The whole “hasn’t been curated due to high volume” notice has been going on in my posts since summer 2019.

The notice of doom (sort of) (image by author)

Sometimes I wished Medium was more specific in terms of why curation stopped. An e-mail like this would’ve helped:

“Wassup, Writer!

Your article, “_______,” made a little curation guideline whoopsie. Name of the crime: ______. Please edit the article, and we’ll review it again for curation!

Love ya,

Your Curation Homies 😊

As funny as it would be, I’m glad the curators are nowhere like this. The curation rules are available for everyone to read. It’s my responsibility (and yours) to follow them.

I’ve read the guidelines dozens of times. Where did I slip?

Did I source something wrong? Were my headlines whack?

Did my paranormal articles do the trick? Too many Bigfoot posts? I can’t help it; I love the hairy guy!

Who knows what went wrong. I can’t walk around in circles, thinking about it forever.

I have big plans for writing on Medium. I admit my heart dropped a bit when I learned I was in curation Azkaban. However, I have no time to linger in writer’s sorrow.

According to other curation prisoners, there are solutions to get eyeballs on your posts:

  • Be published on Medium-owned publications (e.g. The Ascent, Better Marketing, and P.S. I Love You)
  • Market your pieces in different social media platforms
  • Build an e-mail list
  • Start a new profile (as a last resort)

Honestly, I never thought about the curators when it came to posting. I came to Medium to practice consistent writing, build a strong writing portfolio, and meet like-minded people.

Of course, I do like making money here too. I do have a financial goal associated with this platform. Overall, my joy of writing and practice comes first.

The world doesn’t end when you’re in curation Azkaban. Medium’s new rules don’t spell doom. They are a reminder for me to step out of my writing fishbowl (once again).

First, it’s time to stop being intimidated by editors. It’s one reason why I haven’t ventured deep into Medium publications. I submitted to a few in the past, and it didn’t work out. I posted my potential articles in my own blog instead.

Editors exist to shape you into a better writer. They’re here to help you, not hinder your success or tear you apart. They can be your writing pals.

Don’t fear if you’re trapped in curation jail. Believe me, your entire writing success doesn’t end on Medium. Writers keep writing.

Don’t depend on Medium as your only source of writing income. There are hundreds of writing gigs outside of Medium you can do. You can create your own blogs (with your own rules) and monetize them.

I love Medium way too much to stop writing due to a curation cut. I’m grateful some of my followers still see my posts. I’m happy I can always find my posts in the ocean of tags.

I could get mad at Medium, but what good would it do?

My current position on Medium is an excellent opportunity to get more creative. I’ll submit to more publications, continue blogging, and engage with other writers.

Heck, I’ll start an email list to stay in touch with my followers. So far, I’m currently stuck between choosing Substack and Convertkit.

The only way out of curation Azkaban is to move forward, right? I like that direction.

Photo by Kiwihug on Unsplash

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