Advice for Discouraged Photographers and Writers

September 23, 2022

On the human nature of creating

Photo by Paola Chaaya on Unsplash

I recently saw an article from another writer about how they wanted to leave Medium. Their work was not getting the engagement they wanted, and they felt very discouraged.

Many comments followed, including from the OP, on how my advice helped rekindle inspiration.

It got me thinking about how in photography, I have stopped and started so many times also due to my own self-implosions.

I think they happen to the best of us, and as photographers/writers, it is easy to second guess or feel discouraged.

Here is my advice that I shared in a comment to another writer. I made some slight modifications, as this applies to ALL creators, including photographers.

If you want to write, write. And if you want to photograph, photograph. All you need is a pen and a piece of paper or a camera.

If you want to share with others, you have to constantly find new ways to engage others. On Medium, you write. And in photography, you photograph. Then you promote if you want people to find you.

Most make the mistake of posting thinking that their creation is enough. Sadly it is not to accomplish the goal of engagement. To accomplish that, treat your creation more like a business funnel.

Yet, do engage everyone authentically.

If you leave, you leave. Medium continues. Your writing and photography continues if you choose to do so.

However, if you want an honest opinion, I am guessing you are taking more issue with the fact that Medium did not hand you engagement and a pat on the back on a silver platter.

This goes into self worth, doubt, and a downward spiral. None of which have to do with creating exactly.

Maybe take some time and create for yourself. Be selfish and engage your own work to make discoveries.

When you know who you are, the engagement of your creation will not matter as much.

Numbers are numbers.

And to get eyeballs in 2022 where everyone is utterly distracted it takes a lot of hard work.

So it is your decision, but there is a fork in the road.

One way is to stay and put in the hard work, or the other is to leave.

Good luck no matter which you choose!

Hi, I am Charlie Naebeck
I am a husband, professional photographer, teacher, life coach, ex-pat, and digital nomad. 
Voted in the top 10 photography teachers in NYC. Top photography writer on Medium. I also have written for The Phoblographer, Adorama, Dpture, and more.
I travel the world with my family and camera giving others the gift of photography. I also consult with businesses to help develop content creation strategies for business engagement.
Contact me here to book a session.
Download my digital classes and Ebooks here where I provide many valuable insights and tips. 
If you like what you read, please consider giving me a follow on Medium.
Thank you!
P.S. If you are interested in how I got to this point in my life, read my story here.

Advice for Discouraged Photographers and Writers was originally published in ILLUMINATION on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.