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A "Real" Writer

Are you?

By KJ AartilaPublished 17 days ago Updated 17 days ago 3 min read
A "Real" Writer
Photo by Nick Morrison on Unsplash

A "Real" Writer?

I’ve been writing on the Vocal platform for two years now and have published over 175 stories.

Here’s a link to my profile if you're interested in seeing who I am or what I have written:

What does that mean? Have I established myself as a “real writer?”

I don’t quite know what the term “real writer” is referring to, but I think the amount of time and consistency I have put toward publishing stories here qualifies me as someone to be considered a “serious” writer. Am I the best writer? Goodness, no. The Vocal platform has allowed me to build and grow, though. I will share with you some of the reasons I have found the Vocal writing platform to be beneficial toward acheiving my aspirations for success.


The profile page is an easy portfolio in which to keep, share and organize my work where I can point any potentially interested viewer to my work, or where readers and professionals can find me. The profile of my writing has helped me attract a publisher and readers. It’s a simple way to connect with my fanbase and any professional opportunities to expand my writing endeavors. This is a free option with membership, but seems invaluable to me.


Writing is not a get-rich-quick opportunity. It likely takes years to build it into a sustainable career. I enjoy the opportunities Vocal has opened up for me to build a network, friendships with like-minded peers, and the chance to push myself, learn to improve my writing and gain confidence in my abilities as a writer. It does take commitment and effort to reach those goals, but small gains achieved and visualized through financial gains, likes and pleasant feedback, remains a driving force of motivation for those determined to be successful writers. This is where the Stats are my friend.

Subscriptions & Notifications

The subscription and notification features allow me to connect with, and grow, my audience. It allows me to see what of my writing is connecting with readers, and what is inspiring them to subscribe. The notifications feature allows me to look into the profiles of the people liking and subscribing to me. It offers me a way to find new authors and works I enjoy, which I most likely would never have come across without it. This allows me to maintain and grow an audience while keeping a personal touch.

Challenges & Prompts

Even though I have not placed in a challenge to date, I enjoy the opportunities provided to stretch and develop my creativity. The potential financial rewards are nice to imagine, but the competition is high. The likelihood of winning is limited, but the money and the chance to compete is strong motivation. Even when I don’t place, every time I write, I am improving my skill as a writer, therefore, it’s never a loss.

As stated by Nelson Mandela:

“I never lose, I either win or I learn.”

I have every intention of continuing my education as a creator, and will stick with Vocal as long as I feel the platform is contributing to that end.

Thank you for reading! What is your favorite way that Vocal has impacted your writing?

KJ Aartila grew up in a small, rural community surrounded by animals and family. She, along with her husband and daughter, horses and other pets, now live on 40 acres in Northern Wisconsin, surrounded by forest and wildlife. She has spent her life reading about, writing about and working with animals, her goal always to be as reliable, trustworthy and honest as a horse, but her innate humaness keeps getting in the way. She remains determined to keep trying, though.


About the Creator

KJ Aartila

Wife of a very tolerant husband and Mother of one teenage daughter in far northern Wisconsin with too many pets.

You can also find my Author page here

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Comments (7)

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  • HandsomelouiiThePoet (Lonzo ward)2 days ago


  • Yes, I agree with you. Writing is more of a journey rather than something to make us rich quickly. As for challenges, I'm not a Vocal+ member and thus can't enter them. But I enjoy using them as writing prompts at my own leisure. Great article!

  • JBaz17 days ago

    I like that you wrote this. I read your work and know this will make me want to read even more. I, like you, am always learning.

  • Dana Stewart17 days ago

    Good article with solid reminders and sage advice. I enjoy the platform and think it is a worthy indulgence for sure. I've made friends and get to read so many good works. The competition on the challenges is fierce, but that drives me to do my best. I like the deadlines, but have relented that I don't have to do every challenge like I did last year. I've thought many times how much I love Vocal, but Vocal doesn't love me 😍I am a real writer, I feel, because I write. I am not an author - yet - with a published work, but that's my endgame. :) Thanks for articulating the pros and cons. I also predict this will / should be a Top Story.

  • Some excellent points on there, I still don't feel I am a real writer, but maybe that is how I need to feel in order to write, to try and prove myself. You are definitely a real writer.. This will probably be a Top Story

  • Thavien Yliaster17 days ago

    I will write this, Vocal and Medium are good to develop a fanbase, but there are more writing opportunities out there. I know that my parents especially think that if I'm not winning any of the challenge competitions that I should think about finding an official publication place. If one were to be published in the newspaper, in a magazine, or even for a very well known publisher it would change things dramatically. It's all about ROI. Sure, making friends and establishing a community is great, but a lot of people join Vocal to get comfortable with publishing their writings. Then, they might lose sight and get caught in the nonstop challenges. I know that I started using Vocal to get comfortable with publishing and to continue writing, but I originally wanted to publish a book. Being how prolific a writer I am, I practically should have a book by now, even if it were just a small book consisting of poems. Vocal is a good thing to use, but too easy to get absorbed into. I know that the money incentives especially got a lot of people interested. When I first found them on Facebook one of the ads had somebody stating that they paid their rent via writing for Vocal Media.

  • Donna Renee17 days ago

    This was really good, Keila! I think my favorite things about writing here are the challenge prompts that give me parameters and deadlines and also that having a place for my writing to go motivates me to actually put my writing out rather than sitting on it for months or years haha.

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