My Biggest Mistake On Medium

There are times when you make mistakes in your professional life.

I unfortunately make them quite often.

My penchant for typos reflects this rather well.

Sometimes, though, your mistakes hit you in the pocketbook, and that’s a much different type of misery.

When I first started writing on Medium, I put everything up there. I put up fiction, articles, reviews, anything. I had lots of unused stuff or things that were meant for one website or another that for whatever reason ended up not being published.

One such article was this:

It’s not a particularly good article. But, as sometimes on the internet, it got popular and did rather well.

It’s at just over 48 thousand views right now, still bringing a hundred or so a day.

So, what was the mistake?




Forgot to lock it behind the paywall back in the day when I first posted it. You see, back the day publishing a story behind the paywall wasn’t the default option. You had to manually pick that option.

I was super excited as I had only been posting for about a week when I saw a huge spike in views. I went from 100 views to over 5,000. I was floored. But this was before you were told how much money a story was earning per day.

In fact, I didn’t notice for weeks when I happened to check the partner payouts and I couldn’t find this article.

I eventually put it behind the paywall, but it was far too late. It’s only gathering external traffic now, so no members are seeing it.

I have no idea how much it might have made, but I like to think the some may have been a little higher.

Oh well, you live and learn.

But after that happened I made sure to double check that the story I was posting would earn money.

Written by

Matthew Donnellon is a writer, artist, and sit down comedian. He is the author of The Curious Case of Emma Lee and Other Stories.

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