In 2012, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams launched Medium. It was originally intended to extend Twitter’s 140-character limit.
Now, it’s major hub for social journalism.
Although it began more like a blogging platform, the site has expanded to feature various types of content. Medium soon began to acquire publications of its own.
In fact, many well-known publications, such as the Billfold and Pacific Standard, have made the move to Medium. Rather than being paid by Medium directly, writers are compensated through prospective publications.
Here are nine paying markets that live on Medium.
Matter is one of Medium’s first in-house publications, focused on long-form journalism. SELFIE, a seven-chapter installment by writer Rachel Syme, is a great example.
When Matter launched on Medium, the site charged users $0.99 per story for an ad-free reading experience. Its content is now free to the public.
Rates are not public, but pitching guidelines are available.
Backchannel is focused on tech journalism. The publication seeks original, engaging, conversation-starting pitches about technology. To learn more, check out its pitching guidelines. Rates are not public.
3. The Hairpin
With the tagline “Ladies first,” the Hairpin publishes essays and reported pieces with a feminist angle.
Humor is encouraged. For example, writer Rose Lyster contributed a story called The Best Time I Pretended I Hadn’t Heard of Slavoj Žižek that tempted readers with the snippet, “One weird trick to frustrate the hell out of a Marxist bro.”
Payment starts at $125. To pitch, check out this post.
4. The Billfold
The Billfold focuses on personal finance and hopes to spark honest, thoughtful and difficult conversations about money. One of its most popular pieces is A Story of a F*** Off Fund, in which writer Paulette Perhach discusses how she saved half her paychecks to escape toxic men in her life. The ode to women’s financial freedom went viral hours after it was published.
5. The Development Set
The Development Set focuses on global health, development, and social impact. Writer Beejoli Shah contributed a touching piece on a non-profit school for blind women in India. Most stories have an international lens.
Payment isn’t mentioned, but the publication is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Femsplain is an inclusive community for trans/cis women and gender nonconforming individuals. The site exclusively publishes personal essays.
Every two weeks, Femsplain publishes an essay prompt based on a theme. Writers are invited to respond to themes with full drafts. For instance, one of its July 2016 prompts focused on Black Lives Matter. In one response, writer Jocelyn Walker contributed an essay about sexual assault in the black community.
To learn more, visit Femsplain’s writer guidelines. Payment is $25 per essay.
Bright is a publication focused on innovation in education. It regularly publishes “engaging, relatable” content on teaching, educational technology, parenting, education reform, and more. In May of 2015, writer Jessica Sutherland contributed a personal essay on student homelessness.
Bright is looking for topical, attention-grabbing, novel, and participatory pitches on education. It seeks photo essays, comics, opinion pieces, reported stories, and other forms of content.
Like the Development Set, payment isn’t mentioned, but this publication is also funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. To learn more, check out its pitch guidelines.
8. Serious Eats on Medium
Serious Eats focuses on “impressive, audacious, inventive, well-made, or just seriously delicious” food.
While the publication still publishes through its original domain, it also offers a paid subscription model through Medium. According to the site’s announcement, Serious Eats at Medium (or SE@M for short) offers weekly, exclusive content to subscribers not available on SeriousEats.com.
SE@M is looking for 800 to 2,000-word essays related to food, cooking, and eating with a rhetorical position.
For more information, view its submission guidelines. Payment is $100 per essay.
9. Pacific Standard
Pacific Standard concentrates on tackling society’s biggest problems. Its sections include elections, economics, education, the environment, and social justice. Like Serious Eats, this publication still has its own website in addition to its Medium presence. It also publishes a bimonthly print magazine.
Pacific Standard is looking for feature stories, photo essays, and more. For more pitching information, check out its contact page. (It even has a list of what it’s not looking for.) Pay per word is negotiable.
If you’re not on Medium yet, consider signing up before pitching a publication. It helps to build a presence on the site as a writer, even if you’re re-publishing content from your blog.
Even if you’re not writing, creating a Medium account engages you as a reader. If you aren’t registered, can’t recommend or comment on stories.
Have you ever pitched a publication that uses the Medium platform? What was your experience?