Ryan, I don’t want to discount the importance of luck, but reading articles like this makes me sad because they always feel somewhat discouraging.
Like, sure, most of the articles I write plummet uselessly into the void, but a fraction of them don’t. If you turn out two hundred articles a year, the fraction that don’t can, over the years, turn into a meaningful audience. I know sentimental artists don’t like to look at it this way, but on any algorithm powered platform, there is a degree to which it is very much a numbers game — as long as your initial bases are covered (tags, photo, decent formatting, etc), quantity over time=audience growth. That gives me hope because it means while the success of any individual article of mine is down to luck, my success is not. All I have to do is stay the course.
And hey, sure, maybe a meteor hits Medium or I lose my hands in a tractor accident, but nothing is guaranteed. All I mean to say is, it’s reasonable to think that I’ll succeed if I stay the course. It’s not like buying a lottery ticket, which is what the headline “I make money on medium by getting lucky” implies to me.