I’ve been seeing advertisements about Vocal, a media platform that takes submissions from authors writing about topics that range from politics, to music, to poetry. It’s fairly small, but Jerrick Media is a well known and seemingly respected outlet.
Vocal is interesting because it pays writers based on their content views. Vocal doesn’t advertise the algorithm they use to determine payment, but here’s a picture from Matt Cates on Why are You Still Working?
As you can see, the rate is set on per thousand views. So, if you have a killer social media presence or a massive blog following, you could be making some decent cash online, writing about the topics you love.
Yesterday I decided to try Vocal out with a new poem, “Flesh to Feed”. You can read it here.
I wanted a place to write and publish contemporary poetry and social commentary poems, where a dynamic audience was growing. Again, Vocal seems to be new. They only have about 1,500 followers on Twitter, which I am positive will change very soon.
My thinking on this matter is related to the fact that no one outside of the poetry community actually reads literary magazines. Of course, if you make it into Ploughshares or The Paris Review, you’ll get more exposure. But still, that exposure will come from other poets and writers.
Here is my question: how can a writer become published in a way that connects to the general masses? In other words, bridging The Island to The Mainland. In addition, where are the poetry websites that pay? Does that kind of support for the literary arts exist? Okay, so I have a lot of questions.
My hope is that a platform like Vocal can be that bridge and support, that it can create accessibility and popularize poetry once more. In the age of 140 characters and short-form, why couldn’t it?
Anyways, this is how my dashboard looks thirty minutes after my poem was approved and published. Nothing intensively impressive, but if magic happens and money appears, I’ll make sure to share.
If you or anyone you know has written for Vocal and would like to share tips and experiences, comment below! It would be much appreciated!