Less than 24 hours after publishing my Medium article about how I lost one of my best friends, I got a DM on my Instagram account.
An editor from Tango magazine reached out to me, complimenting my article and asking if I’d be interested in republishing it on the magazine’s website, YourTango.com.
I was elated. I had never gotten such an invitation before, much less one from an editor contacting me on behalf of a magazine.
Of course, I accepted their offer.
They picked a date to publish the article, and less than 3 weeks later, it’s officially up on their website as promised.
This is perhaps one of my biggest publishing accomplishments to date, if not my biggest one, and I’m still over the moon happy about it.
But I’d like to come back down to Earth and provide some tips on how I pulled it off so you can do the same.
Tip #1: Accept that it’s probably not going to happen overnight.
As aptly placed in the subtitle of this article, this tip is perhaps the most important one I want you to grasp.
I’ve been creating content online on and off for 6+ years and this was the first time I’ve been hit up with this kind of offer.
I’ve been on Quora, Twitch.TV, Medium, Instagram, Twitter, and more.
But in spite of my reach, spread, and diversification of platforms, nothing I produced quite hit the mark, at least not the mark that gets you published in a magazine.
Set realistic expectations and don’t expect your first article to become a big hit. In all likelihood, it very well won’t be.
That’s not a diss at your writing ability; most people’s first try at anything isn’t going to be stellar, and it doesn’t just apply to your first article.
Your first attempt at baking a cake probably won’t come out perfect. Neither will your very first golf swing.
It will take time, but if getting published in a magazine is the kind of result you wanna have, you need to be willing to put in the effort over a sufficient amount of time.
Tip #2: Work on improving your craft, not just doing more of it.
Increasing content production quantity can be a good thing, but if you churn out three mediocre articles a week for eternity, you can’t expect to do as well as someone who writes the same amount of articles weekly but also works on turning that mediocre quality into higher and better quality over time.
I’ve looked at some of my old work, and the difference in quality between what I write today and what I wrote 5 years ago is utterly palpable.
In hindsight, it’s no surprise to me that I didn’t get hit up back then to have my articles republished.
Read articles from writers who are at the level you want to be at. Pay attention to how they write and craft their work. Heed the advice they give on how to be a better writer.
One of my writing role models is Tim Denning. He’s got some great advice for you, and I recommend checking him out.
And once you hit your own milestones like I did and you see some results, it’s always a good idea to pass your knowledge and wisdom on to budding writers and writers to come.
Pass on the torch to light the way.
Tip #3: Leave a trail for people to follow and reach you.
My Linktree that I post in my bio did not have a direct way to reach me, and the editor who DM’d me only did so after jumping through the hoop of going to my Instagram and then DM’ing me from there.
I have since fixed that and put an email button in the Linktree so I can be emailed directly from there for business inquiries.
I would be kicking myself if I found out that an editor wanted to reach out to me, but then moved on to a different writer since they couldn’t find a way to contact me.
You’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t provide your audience with a way to reach out to you.
Yes, providing a path might open the doors to spam and scam invitations, but you’re also opening the way for business and networking opportunities. You can’t expect that everyone who’s interested in collaborating with you will go the extra mile the way the editor for YourTango did for me.
I personally use a Linktree that allows you to place multiple links essentially in just one link. It’s a great place to advertise your diverse social media platforms as well as ways to reach you. (not a paid advertisement)
Just remember to provide at least one avenue for someone to directly reach you, such as an email address, in your Linktree so that you don’t miss out on great offers and opportunities that want to find you.