by Philip Dhingra
So today I finished excerpting my entire book Dear Hannah on Medium. After 3 months and 82 posts — 8 of which did well on social media — I can say I’m very happy with the results.
Below I describe what I liked about using Medium, how I got the most out of it, and some thoughts on how it can fit into your book’s strategy.
First, a little bit about Dear Hannah. It’s comprised of 82 letters to Hannah, each one describing every self-help book, pop psych article, and personal invention I used — or abused — to change who I am. Having my content broken into such small chunks made excerpting perfect for Medium.
My goal was to give first-time readers the best possible experience. You often only have one chance to snag someone’s interest in your book, and so I didn’t want to lose anybody for something trivial, such as poor readability on a mobile device. I’m a professional web designer, but patching my Movable Type (my hosted blogging software) or trying to hack a template in Tumblr are tedious tasks, and so I went with Medium.
I didn’t want to lose anybody for something trivial, such as poor readability on a mobile device.
I know a thing or two about text editors, considering that’s how I make a living, and a common request is to make my editor more like WriteRoom. WriteRoom is a spartan full-screen text editor with actually not much that you can do. But here, less is more, as options distract the creative process.
Medium feels like WriteRoom, which doesn’t just help with creativity, but also with publishing. Less options keep you from screwing up the beautiful layout of your text by messing with justification, bullets and other doodads. After all, the best of the Internet is content, plain and simple.