I help beginners make money writing.

I've edited over 100+ articles in one month. Here's what I've learned

Published 6 months ago • 2 min read

Hi Reader,

I've been the editor of Better Marketing for a few months now. A few days ago, I submitted (and had accepted!) my first Boost nomination. Between those two milestones, I've reviewed, edited, decided whether to accept, reject, or ask feedback for 100+ articles.

Here are my takeaways for you, about Boosting, quality, and how to get accepted.

  1. Nobody reads the submission and style guidelines. The number of articles I get that are off-topic (abotu self-improvement, talking about writing but with no marketing link, or about one of the things we explicitly say we don't publish), formatted weirdly, self-promotional, or have about ten calls to action is unbelievable. Please read these if you want to get accepted!
  2. The amount of AI-written content is staggering. I've discovered three specific tells that give it away for me, but honestly even if I didn't suspect a piece was AI-written, the content reads so dry and boring that I'd reject it in a heartbeat regardless.
  3. There's more competition among Nominators for articles to Boost than there are Boostworthy articles. Out of those 100+ articles, I've only submitted a handful for the Boost -- not because I don't want to, but because I just haven't seen enough that meet my standards.
  4. I have less time for, well, everything else. I had a healthy amount of respect for publication owners and editors before. Now that respect is sky-high. The work is split among three of us, but the running of a publication is extremely time-consuming work. And you know what? We're doing it for free.
  5. It's slow going, but it's rewarding. Since taking over Better Marketing, we've published just 20 articles. We've fielded over 80+ new writer submissions (only 15% of which were accepted unconditionally!) and looked at 100+ other articles. Our views are slowly starting to climb, we're getting better and better quality submissions, and we're feeling more comfortable with our work. I can't wait to see what comes next.

What should you do?

If you'd like to submit to Better Marketing, or any publication, I recommend you do the following:

  • Read these submission guidelines. They're for Fanfare, a pop culture publication, but Eric does a great job explaining both the nuances of good writing as well as a couple other issues (image attribution, why reading the guidelines matters, and best writing practices). He also does it with a lot of humor and understanding.
  • Don't use AI to generate content. Use it for titles, tables, ideation, or any other assistive task. don't use it to write content. We (publication editors and regular readers) can tell and we hate it.
  • Before you publish anything, really ask yourself: If my boss/mom/ideal client read this, would I feel proud? Or...embarrassed? So often there's this rush to get pieces out the door, or tick boxes like "get into publication X" or "write 5x this week" that the content that comes out is a little crappy.
  • Remember: There's less competition than you think. If you're a good writer, you have a story to tell, and you can read a submission guidelines page, you're already ahead of about 80% of our submissions pile.

Happy writing,


I help beginners make money writing.

by Zulie Rane

I went from 0-100k+ with freelance writing in two years. My job is to help you do the same. I offer digital templates, printable starter kits, and ad-free content. Check out my posts below.

Read more from I help beginners make money writing.

Good afternoon Reader, It's been a hot minute since I've written you a newsletter, and if you're a new subscriber, you might not even remember why you signed up! Let's just do a quickfire intro: 👋 I'm Zulie. I'm a writer on Medium, my favorite blogging platform, and on my website, I make content (videos, articles, and newsletters) about how to grow your blogging empire and make a living writing about what you love Got that? Great. Happy to still have you! Writing Goals for...

30 days ago • 1 min read
woman in black long sleeve shirt using macbook

Good afternoon Reader, Medium has recently introduced a new and kind of wild option: instead of paying $5/month for membership, you can choose -- voluntarily! -- to pay $15/month. Quick reminder: Medium is a free blogging platform. Anyone can join and start writing immediately, for free. To join the Partner Program and get paid for your writing, you have to be a paying Medium member. As a Member, you also get to read unlimited paywalled Medium stories. You can read the full blog post here: ✨...

3 months ago • 5 min read
black and brown long coated dog on white sand during daytime

Good afternoon Reader, If you’re like me, you hate looking at your old blog posts. It’s like hearing stories about what you did when you were drunk — I really said those things? I really wrote those words? That’s the odd thing about writing. Unlike other practiced skills like weightlifting, it’s hard to see obvious improvement day-to-day--or even month-to-month. If you want to see how you’ve improved, you have to look at your previous work. Once you can bring yourself to look at your past...

4 months ago • 3 min read
Share this post