We know it’s not easy to engage our writing, that’s why this guide exists to help.
Writer friends, please go sit down and drink some vodka. I know, I know we promised tequila but do you remember that bad bout of writer’s block? There’s a reason you don’t. Those bottles of Jose Cuervo didn’t drink themselves, well until they did. But enough about that magical evening, let me talk with your family and explain a few things to them.
Family, we appreciate your encouragement. The lack of enthusiasm whenever we mention a new project is your way of tampering expectations, we know this. Screaming when we get published is a great way to let people know, and say ‘suck it’ to your friends but that’s only part of the story. Writers everywhere want you to understand how we get paid and the different levels of engagement.
When we have an article or another piece published, we get excited and share a link with you. Maybe it’s on Facebook or Twitter. One time, we wrote it across your forehead and kept tapping it wondering why it wouldn’t open. But that wasn’t our fault, that was the Jose Cuervo and tacos.
Every time you click the link, it shows up as a view. So grandpa, be a little more patient and let the computer think for a second before getting frustrated and hitting the link a thousand more times while muttering you never had this problem with a newspaper. Frankly, we’re distraught that you keep talking about the make-believe form of journalism.
As you can see, the example article had 40 views. This is a good start. Views simply mean someone has clicked on the link. They were intrigued enough to click the link but now we need them to do something else.
So now you’ve clicked on the link once, and one time only, what more do we need from you? We need you to do something that you haven’t since we harangued you into reading us the Harry Potter series. We knew what we were doing. Mostly. You don’t know us!
Think of your writing relatives like you do Target. You go in there with one thing in mind but leave by signing over your mortgage. Clicking the link takes you to the webpage with our article, maybe it even had our by-line! Now at Bingo, you get to talk about your wonderful child or grandchild. Before you’re reminded we’re still single. There’s a reason for that. We can’t get married until we find the magical worm from a very special event to fight writer’s block. The first rule of the writer’s club, we don’t talk about the writer’s club. The second rule of writer’s club? Oh look we’re out of tequila time to go
So, after you click the link, we need you to actually read the article. In the example above the second column reads “reads.” That means how many people stayed on the link for long enough to actually read the thing. We know you haven’t actually read it and just want to say something nice. Anyway, some evil individual thought it would be funny if that were the way we start getting paid. Not a large sum, as you remind us when doling out our allowance, but a little something.
Right next to the reads number is something called a ratio. This number represents the percentage of view clicks divided by the read rate. For this article, the conversion rate is 52%. Failing in school but passing as a writer!
What It Means To Fan
No matter what site your precious alcoholic, writer, sorry forgot. No matter what platform they write on, there is some variation of fans. On Medium, you fan someone by leaving a comment, clapping (the most common), or highlighting the article. The platforms see this and they think, well this is something special.
The reason why is simple. If you take the time to clap or highlight, that keeps you on the platform longer. Most make money via advertising and advertisers want to keep us hostage. That should read: The fine business people who bring us adverts are only trying to look out for our best interests. Are they gone? They threatened to not sell any more tequila to us.
Alright back to this. As you can see, in this example there were 2 fans. There were also 2 reads. That means 100% of the people who read the piece loved it enough to interact with it. Yea!
Let’s just hope those two people were chasing the worm down the bottle. One last thing, my fellow writers have asked me to tell you we’re not drunks, we just like it when our characters talk to us.