While I still pursue a number of these ventures, I have always loved writing! So I decided to begin exploring what it would take to replace my full-time income through online content creation.
As with many bloggers, entrepreneur, or passion economy content creators, I prioritize my general freedom and control of my scope of work, over maximizing my total earnings. Scaling this income is far more rewarding than money I earned working at a tech startup, in finance, or at an established lobbying firm.
I first started blogging on platforms like Medium in my spare time. I took a number of freelance writing jobs. I created a Substack newsletter.
However, I quickly found there were very few platform-specific resources for content creators using different platforms. I created a publication called Medium Blogging Guide to demystify the writing process on Medium. When I first started writing on Medium, there were almost no useful tutorials or articles explaining how to succeed on the platform or how to format my articles. As a new writer, this was both confusing and discouraging. So I gradually learned platform tips and formatting tricks, I began writing articles explaining these concepts to help new writers. That collection of articles was eventually organized into a single publication, Medium Blogging Guide.
Today, Medium Blogging Guide is the premier publication dedicated to helping writers achieve success on Medium. Our publication consists of over 250 articles, lists, tutorials, and resources for writers.
Because I was simultaneously exploring a number of digital publishing platforms (Substack, Amazon KDP, Ghost, HubPages, News Break), I started creating similar guides and tutorials, to help answer the hundreds of questions I was receiving via email from other content creators, per week! That led to the creation of the self-hosted website that you are reading (BloggingGuide.com).
I was hired to do consulting for many of these platforms (as I was spending more time than many of the employees working at these companies) to develop solutions to product issues and help build relationships with the writer community.
I was awarded the Substack Writer Grant, had the chance to work with platforms such as Medium to offer input, and I was hired by a number of companies looking to better understand the digital publishing landscape, as the passion economy’s growth was accelerated by the pandemic.
However, even though I’ve had a number of successes, it is worth noting that it took me several years of deliberate work to even get to this point. And I have been experimenting with making money online for well over a decade. Also, I certainly made a lot of trade offs in my search for more meaningful work (as a top graduate from an Ivy League University, my first job out of college paid ~$100K annually). And much of what I learned in college was not directly transferable to real world or practical skills when it came to making money online, content creation, or entrepreneurship.
I mention this in the hopes that anyone who has put their creative dreams on hold because the perceived opportunity cost is too high, will reconsider going after that creative venture. I know how hard it is to walk away from the steady, higher paying option. But I can also confirm that the journey, although extraordinarily challenging, is well worth it.