Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, contests and more!
Start Your Free Trial

How one humor writer went from 0 to 30+ published bylines in just one year

...And how you can, too.

Add to Favorites

“The dubious privilege of a freelance writer is he’s given the freedom to starve anywhere.”

—S.J. Perelman

After agonizing for weeks and nit-picking words in my first short assignments, my class instructor finally said, “Send it in, already!” (She was actually really nice about it.) Those first two pieces – one written on a whim while waiting for my car to be serviced at the dealership – were soon published in Points In Case.

While I’m conditioned to anticipate rejection (hence tequila), you should really be prepared for acceptance. Because once you finish doing the Snoopy Happy Dance, you’re going to need to have something else to submit. And that’s a good thing!

In a little over a year, I published 32 short, satirical essays in several online outlets. A video I submitted to John Krasinski’s Some Good News was featured on his internet show with play-by-play from Fox sportscaster Joe Buck. More than 6 million people viewed it. In addition to penning comedy, I’m now considering writing a novel.

While I’ve been incredibly lucky, it’s the hard-working and tenacious writer who will make a living. Through the Medium partner program, I’ve made $18.42. Hey, I can buy two Venti Caramel Macchiatos, one ham and cheese savory foldover, and a blueberry scone from Starbucks and still have change for the parking meter.


But I’m having fun and discovering new opportunities. And if this story gets published, maybe I’ll be able to buy some new sweatpants.

—Nancy Franklin writes about life’s absurdities wherever and whenever she finds them. She has been published in the Los Angeles Times, Slackjaw, Points In Case, and The Belladonna. Visit her website at or follow her on Twitter @mirthquakes.