Hi, I'm Jan König 👋. I'm one of the founders of Jovo, 28 years old, and live in Berlin. < Go back to learn more.

Snapchat vs. Medium: Mental Models of Writing

It's been almost two months since I revived my old daily newsletter and turned it into a weekly letters. I haven't broken the streak yet, but I noticed that writing a weekly newsletter (compared to daily ones) changed something about how I approach writing: it's way more difficult.

Now that I have one newsletter a week, it feels like I have to invest more time and write longer letters. While the daily ones felt like writing down thoughts, weekly ones now feel like writing articles.

This is not necessarily a bad thing.
 

Short-form vs long-form

I have two unfinished podcast episodes sitting around, waiting to be edited. There are also at least 10 drafts for blog posts I've been writing on for more than a year. And yet, it's no problem to publish a weekly episode of #TestingTuesday to YouTube.

The videos are also time-consuming to record and edit, however, they require less more thinking before hitting the publish button because they feel "live". And this is also what I liked about my previous daily newsletters: they felt like an unpolished thought, like a Snapchat story into my work life.

This feeling of "reporting" as compared to "writing" makes it easier for creators to consistently push out content. As Gary Vaynerchuk says: "Document, don't create."
 

Snapchat vs. Medium

Medium has a different mental model, at least it had in its first years. It started with an invite-only system for writers, which led to having very few, but extremely high-quality articles. This increased the barrier of entry, making everyone else who joined the platform work hard to only publish their best pieces.

One of my most successful blog posts on Medium (Alexa, please send this to my screen) took several long days to write, but was ultimately one of the reasons that got us into voicecamp last year. So, long-form can have its advantages, too.
 

Summary

There are very successful writers on both ends of the spectrum. In the end, I believe it really depends on what both readers and writer enjoy. I will try to not "overthink" the writing process too much over the next few weeks.

What do you think, what's the ideal format for this newsletter?

- Jan

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